Inula Royleana
Midwest Gardening
Berm Ideas

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Basic design principles can guide you to a beautiful berm

One final note on creating a berm, finish it well by edging.  Whether you use landscape edging or a narrow crisp trench, edging will prevent the lawn from creeping into the bed and give it a professional finish.  Accent your edge with stones or plants.

Berm by Mara

This berm has only a slight elevation, but enough to add a little height interest on this large flat piece of property.  The very simple design is enough to create a lovely setting that joins the two large shade trees.  A few strategically placed flat boulders add interest and allow easy access to the perennials for maintenance.  Just a few splashes of color using only two plant varieties add unity and rhythm, drawing the eye across the bed.  The evergreens are young, and will need a lot of space to mature.  In time this will be a great privacy screen for the adjoining home.  The sweeping curves are neatly trenched.

Mountain Laurel Kalmia latifolia

A high berm created to resolve drainage issues does not necessarily have to be fully planted.  Here several different Mountain Laurel shrubs are used to create a hedge to screen the berm.  Still a lovely addition to the landscape, creating a colorful transition to the stand of trees behind.

Front Entry berm flows to the street by Michael Boumann

A front entry berm can aid in draining rain away from the homes foundation.  It is also ideal for casually designed foundation plantings with sweeping curves flowing out into the lawn.  A front entry berm can be more formally designed with neatly structured plants and edges.

Hill Berm by CL Kohan

This berm is either natural or was created when a developer graded to build.  A tier was created for a planting bed to create a lovely border along the driveway.  The bed would receive water runoff from the hill so thirsty plants would not need extra watering.  Blue is used throughout the simple plant design.  A few small boulders add to the natural feeling and a simple iron accent.  When adding a planting tier to a turf berm, do consider mowing difficulties.  A boulder or timber wall could create a mow-able edge on the top of the berm.

Corner berm by Peter Howe

This little berm in the corner of a property is highlighted by a lattice fence.  A corner berm can draw extra attention to a planting bed in unnoticed corners.  The bright triadic color scheme in primary colors is more easily viewed from a distance.  Simple green plants balance the brights.


Sometimes dense shade makes it difficult to grow grass, and hills are difficult to mow.  Both these difficulties are corrected with this decorative berm.  Colorful blooms and textured perennial foliage create interest all around the perimeter of the simple design.  An accent bench creates a shady place to relax.

Sound barrierberm

An existing hill can be built up higher to create a sound and privacy screen.  If further screening is desired, taller dense plantings will finish the job.  Again, simple design repeating just a few plants is usually enough for a large berm.  Just a few accents of color will keep it from getting too busy.  Bolders help hold the soil.

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