Log Home Landscaping Wisdom

Dawn SmithLog Homeowner EducationLeave a Comment

log rot under the windows near landscaping

Landscaping is always a challenging aspect of the log home restoration process and often the most significant obstacle we face when restoring cabins. It is usually because of a sentimental attachment to a bush or tree planted too close to the log structure. But it can also be due to improper drainage near the cabin that leads to all kinds of problems like log rot and cracked foundations. Foundation issues that cause settling on your cabin should always be addressed before restoration repairs.

When planning your landscaping, it’s uncommon for people to consider solutions for their log home settling problems and service providers. Please consider the obstacles you create for your log home service providers when planning your landscaping around the cabin and the potentially expensive maintenance and repairs you make for your cabin.

Foundations, Covered Porches, & Adequate Air Flow

Although there is yet to be a unanimous agreement among log home builders, many recommend maintaining at least a 24-inch clearance between the ground and the first row of logs to prevent rain splash-back. Additionally, installing covered porches or extending roof eaves can significantly protect the lower logs from rot. For example, eaves that extend five feet beyond the cabin walls can dramatically reduce the risk of log rot. Keeping large shrubs and trees away from home will allow adequate air flow to help with drying after the rain, prevent the foundation from settling & root infiltration, and offer maintenance space.

Landscaping limits

We replaced the rotted logs behind these rose bushes before staining. Windows are always susceptible to rot like any home. Additionally, plants and trees close to your log cabin can prevent natural drying of your logs, leading to premature log rot.

When you’re planning your surrounding landscape or planting a tree around your log home, please be aware of three to four people moving heavy logs and machines, 5-gallon buckets, tarps, sprayers, blasters, and more about ten to twenty feet from your home during a log repair or preservation. How would you be able to protect that landscaping? Or should you get creative and create a plan for the future restoration?

Think about How you could protect your landscaping

We try very hard to protect landscaping; however, some circumstances can be impossible to avoid, such as wet soil after the rain. We do not create these obstacles and work hard to respond reasonably to them because we want you to be happy and leave an excellent review for us. It is a wise idea, as a log homeowner, to keep the restoration process in mind when planning your landscaping.

Slope equations from Wikipedia Website on 11/27/2023

Plan for Log Home Maintenance & Restoration before building or Landscaping

Figuring out your landscape slope and how it will affect your log home and the care of it is often part of the building phase. However, this differs from the issues you’ll be concerned with when we arrive. With maintenance required in 3 years, you should prepare. Your log home builder/engineer/architect should remember maintenance and restoration when designing how your cabin will sit on your property and how heavy equipment will damage the landscape. In 5 to 10 years, you may need another restoration. Stains can last longer or less depending on location: relative humidity in the area, positioning of your log structure, landscaping, and following recommended maintenance schedules. What should you consider in the planning?

Considerations to Landscape Planning for a Log Home

Things to consider when landscaping with a restoration future, take into account:

  • The varying heights of your cabin can determine the need for scaffolding or a heavy lift to reach high places like:
    • the peaks,
    • decks,
    • roof chimneys surrounded by log siding,
    • gables,
    • windows,
    • soffit,
    • etc.
  • Windows in areas with low airflow or sunlight are always at risk for log rot,
  • Landscaping (lawn & house ornaments, trees & bushes, sheds & garages, etc.) that cast shadows on your logs, blocking sunlight for natural drying after wet weather, especially on the north facing logs,
  • South walls with the most average sunlight will likely sunburn first, causing stain failures like peeling or cracking,
  • How will the equipment be transported to those locations without damaging my yard or landscaping,
  • Am I creating obstacles for my future log home services that will get damaged and need replacing in the future.

Log Structure Landscape Planning Ideas and Suggestions

Log Structure Landscape Planning Ideas to help you plan for your log cabin appearance, maintenance, and restoration. This image may be complex to read from your mobile device. Please consider viewing it from your computer for more details in the image. You can also email [email protected] to ask for the original picture to help plan or download this image by clicking the icon below.

Customer Preparation for Log Home Services

For some of you, you’re probably glad you found this article before you built. However, for those who bought a log home with established landscaping, consider the above. Before we arrive, we should send you Log Masters Restorations Log Home Restoration and Maintenance Customer Prep for Services sheet. Do not overlook this document. It was made after many bad experiences for us and customers to avoid known service issues in the future. Created for awareness, it should help our customers prepare for our arrival and services. On it, you will find a detailed list for you to review and complete before we arrive to ensure the best services with minimal disruptions and damage.

We want to hear from you

If you need help planning how to do log home landscaping, please email us, and we will offer our best comprehensive solution. Please let us know what you think in the comments. Your question may spark the following article for discussion.

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