The architectural guidelines are rules set in place about the design of your front yard. The landscaping in a neighborhood can enhance the feel of the community, or it can make a neighborhood look disjointed by having a number of different styles and elements. The guidelines are put in place to try to bring a visually good impression to a neighborhood and reinforce the style of the homes in that neighborhood. As a minimum, the guidelines usually require a certain number of trees and shrubs be planted in your front yard, and well as stating a minimum size for those trees. Deciduous trees are sized by caliper, meaning the diameter of their trunk 1 ft. off the ground. Coniferous trees are measured by height.
Some guidelines also include a limit on placement of rock, types of rock allowed and even combinations of plant material that can be used together. It is wise to check your Architectural guidelines prior to beginning your landscaping.