Landscape Design for Increased Security

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Landscape design is an excellent way to increase your home's visual appeal, create a more pleasing atmosphere and raise your property's value.  A well designed landscape design plan can also do much to improve the security of your home.  When planning a landscape design project, or even in maintaining your current landscape, it is important to think about the security implications, so that you can balance the overall aesthetics of your home's look with a setting that also protects your family and your belongings.

Those who make a practice of burglary look for certain aspects of setting and accessibility when choosing their targets.  When designing your landscape, you should try to visualize your final product through that mentality, as well.  Though the affluence of your home may make it a more appealing target for theft, the ease of access and the potential for seclusion can mean the difference between getting hit and being passed over.

Decreasing Access

When putting in any new trees around your home, you want to think about how close the tree's branches will get to the home when it reaches maturity.  Though locating trees near windows is an excellent way to lower your energy bills, extended branches can also provide an access point for would-be intruders.  Try to give an arm's length of berth between the furthest reaching branches and the windows and eaves of your house.  Trim the branches of any existing trees so that the windows and roof of your home cannot be accessed from them.


While landscape design can offer you increased privacy on your property, keep in mind that anything that obstructs visibility from the street or from your neighbors offers concealment for a potential thief.  Using low lying shrubbery can still help to protect your property and provide you a measure of privacy without completely obstructing the view of neighborhood watches and patrolling police vehicles.  Using thorny plants around the ground level of the home can dissuade burglars from attempting to conceal themselves in your shrubbery.  Ornamental plants such as firethorn and holly are attractive, low maintenance and serve well as a protective barrier.  Roses, cacti and other prickly plants can also be good options near low windows.


Landscape design includes all aspects of your exterior design, not just your plants, water features and other decorations.  Lighting is a very important aspect of landscape design, and one which can make a dramatic difference in the safety of your home.  It is very wise to incorporate motion sensitive flood lights into your landscape.  Thieves rely on seclusion and the ability to remain hidden while they go about their objectives.  A home that affords no shadowy recesses to skulk in is a much less attractive target for a potential burglar than one that is dimly lit and secluded.

Though it is impossible to make any home 100% burglar-proof, there are many practical steps you can take to lower the appeal to would-be intruders.  You need not spend a fortune on your landscape project to make your home more secure.  Simply adapting your current setting by trimming trees and adding a few inexpensive lights and thorny plants around the perimeter can significantly decrease your chances of being intruded upon.