As 2017 draws closer, we have our eyes on gardening trends that will dominate the New Year. Even though winter weather still has a firm grip on us, here in Northern Utah, this is the perfect time to start planning for spring.

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If you’d like to upgrade your landscaping with a fresh new look, or if you aspire to create a more environmentally friendly yard, 2017’s gardening trends will provide just the inspiration you need.

Drought-Tolerant Plants for Sustainable Garden Design

With many areas of the country experiencing abnormally dry or drought conditions, water-wise plants are becoming a dominant gardening trend. More homeowners are choosing drought-tolerant plants and less turf grass, to save water and benefit the environment.

Sustainable garden design is both cost-effective and practical, but that doesn’t mean it has to be sparse or boring. A variety of shrubs, vines and coniferous and deciduous trees are water-wise choices. Likewise, many different ornamental grasses, groundcovers and beautiful perennial flowers are drought-tolerant.

If you aren’t familiar with the plants that require less water to thrive, the friendly staff at Millcreek Gardens can show you many options that are appropriate for Northern Utah’s climate and conditions.

Blended Gardening Trends Are Beautiful and Bountiful

Traditionally, gardeners plant flowers separately from fruits and vegetables. This year, however, blended gardening trends are influencing the way we see – and use – our outdoor plants.

Blended landscaping combines edibles and ornamentals together in the same garden beds, to provide both beauty and a bounty of food. The plants are woven together – there’s no strict separation between the flowers and the edible plants.

Fruit-bearing or ornamental trees, shrubs and tall plants can provide structure, height and privacy. Mingle those with herbs, vegetables and colorful perennials or annuals for an appealing landscape aesthetic that also offers an abundant source of food.

Grow Food, Not Lawns” movement, that urges gardeners to use natural resources and planting space for a purpose that transcends purely ornamental goals. Because many homeowners’ associations discourage utilitarian planting beds visible from the street, creating growers are finding ways to blend their growing spaces.

Understated Garden Design Trends Offer a Modern and Clean Look

Less is definitely more in 2017. Over-the-top, flamboyant landscape design is fading away. Instead, more homeowners are looking for a subtle beauty with underlying complexity.

Gardening trends with a minimalist approach offer a modern look that is clean and neat, and that accentuates the home’s architecture without detracting. Plants and decorative elements are chosen carefully, using a consistent color scheme throughout the garden space. This creates uniformity and simplicity and a distinctly modern vibe.

The right plants are key to a minimalist landscape, as they are central to the design itself. Homeowners typically select architectural or structural plants that create a striking result. Many different plants -- including ferns, palms, succulents, ornamental grasses and shrubs -- have strong shapes and textures that can be featured in this type of garden design.

Hard landscaping details like stones, bricks, fences and paved areas frame the plants and add form and function to the garden, giving it clean lines and a contemporary look.

Of course, these gardening trends won’t appeal to everyone. But at Millcreek Gardens, Salt Lake City’s favorite garden center since 1955, our knowledgeable associates can help you select the outdoor plants, shrubs, shade trees and garden supplies that are perfect for you and your landscape. Visit us today to learn more about the gardening trends we expect to see more of in 2017.