Spring is the time of years that folks think about landscaping their homes. While you are making your planting plan, think about the energy impact of what and where you plant.
You can reduce the cost of home heating and cooling by planting the right types of trees and bushes in the right places. The idea is to block the cold winter winds and provide shade in summer while letting the solar heat in during the winter. This is written for folks in the north half of the globe. If you live south of the equator, switch north for south. East is still where the sun comes up.
A windbreak of evergreen trees to the north of your house will reduce winter heating cost. Blocking the wind reduces the wind chill factor that you house is exposed to.
Evergreen shrubs and bushes planted against the north facing house walls will help too. They work like a sweater by reducing the air movement next to the exterior walls. You will have to consult with your green thumb friends about what will grow on the shady side of your house.
The Energy Boomer likes to see the first light of dawn, so I wouldn’t want anything blocking the view out my east side windows. The morning sun light helps in the winter. The morning light is weak after a cool night and causes very little solar heating in the summer.
Your house gets the maximum solar heating when the sun is in the south and west. Trees that provide shade in the heat of summer and drop their leaves to let the sun shine in during winter are just right to save your energy money.
Shrubs and bushes planted close to the south and west walls of your house work the same way. They need to be full of sun blocking leaves in the summer. Dropping their leaves, in the autumn makes a clear path for solar heating the house walls in the winter.
Ivy covered walls are not just for appearance.
Add some green leaf sun block to save your air conditioning cash.
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