October 21, 2017
The wind is a part of life in Michigan, especially in the winter. When a big Arctic front moves down from Canada, you know the breezes are going to pick up and the feels-like temperature is going to plunge along with the temperature. Creating a blockage, also known as a windbreak, near your home can actually lower your heating costs and make your home more comfortable.
How to Block the Breezes
You want to create your windbreak where the breezes are most common. That is usually from the north and northwest. You also want to position it for maximum effectiveness.
Let’s first talk distance. A windbreak can block the wind for a distance up to 30 times its height. If you have a line of trees 20 feet tall, that means it could break the winds up to 600 feet. Now, you don’t want to put the windbreak too far from the house. Ideally, you should create it 2 to 5 times the height of the tallest elements. So, with 20-foot trees, you would go 40 to 100 feet away from the house.
What landscape elements should you use in a windbreak?
You can actually use a number of different elements to create your windbreak. You can mix and match them as it suits your needs and your intended aesthetic. Here is a partial list of what you can use in a windbreak:
- A natural or man-made berm. A berm is a mound of earth that helps to divert the breeze away from the house.
- Trees are another option. Choose dense evergreen trees for maximum effectiveness.
- Shrubs are great in between the trees. This helps block the breeze at the lower levels.
- Bushes work must the same as shrubs.now fences can help capture snow before it drifts near the house.
Are There Other Windbreak Options?
A wall is actually an effective windbreak. It provides a solid surface through which the breeze cannot penetrate. The problem with walls is that you need to build them tall enough to keep the breeze away from the house. They can be paired with tall evergreen shrubs and trees to provide a multi-layer windbreak option.Walls are great for enclosing outdoor living space. They provide privacy as well as blocking the breezes. It can help extend the time you use your outdoor space well into the fall.
What Else Do You Need to Know About Windbreaks?
Windbreaks can help to create a comfortable home year round. There is no one way to landscape a windbreak. You can create one that matches the look and style of your home. Combining plants in unique ways can give you a break from the breeze while adding landscaping pizzazz to your property. Get the help of professionals to make it happen.
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