Another Benefit to Landscaping

By Brooke Drake, February 22, 2010, News

There are a number of ways to save on your electricity bill. Weatherproofing, double pane windows, not running the air/heat when away from the home, etc.  But I found another way to save that comes from the outside. In particular, landscaping can actually help out with energy savings. According to the U.S. Department of Energy (http://www.energy.gov/landscaping.htm), “[o]n average landscaping for energy efficiency provides enough energy savings to return an initial investment in less than 8 years.” If you’re looking to make changes to your landscape or looking for additional ways to cut energy costs, here are some tips, from the U.S. Department of Energy, to help beautify your home while helping save on your energy bill.

Tip #1 – Landscaping your home for energy efficiency can reduce your heating and cooling, which is the largest component of your total home energy use. One thing to note is that your landscaping strategy should depend on where you live and your climate.

Tip #2 – Plant trees to shade your home. This can reduce cooling costs in the summertime. Trees can start shading the first year they are planted but typically take about five to ten years for them to reach your roof.

Tip #3 – Plant shrubs, bushes and/or vines next to your home. Doing this creates dead air spaces that will insulate your home in both the winter and summer. Be sure to plant them at least one foot away from your home’s wall and from any full grown plants.

Tip #4 – Dense, low-lying trees and shrubbery. During the winter, these that grow on the north and northeast sides of your home can protect it from wind chill, which can help your heating costs.

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