The Best Landscaping Ideas for a Low-Maintenance Garden
Gardens are a desirable feature in most homes, but they often require a lot of maintenance, especially in the summer months. If you love gardening, this won’t be a problem, but if you work full-time and have family responsibilities, chances are a low-maintenance garden is on your wish list.
How easy is it to create a low-maintenance garden? Read on for some handy tips.
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Get Rid of the Lawn
Lawns are not low maintenance. In the summer, you will need to cut the grass at least once a week, and perhaps even twice weekly if the growing conditions are optimal. Lawns also need weeding and feeding, edging, and possibly repairing if the dog pees on it or your kids love a game of football.
Getting rid of the lawn will make your life a lot easier. For obvious reasons, replacing it with concrete is not a great idea, but there are plenty of attractive alternatives.
Fake turf has never looked so good. Better varieties look almost identical to the real thing, and the best bit? You don’t need to cut the lawn! Artificial turf is hard-wearing and easy to clean. Hose it down and remove dead leaves; that’s pretty much it.
Another alternative is to replace areas of turf with paving, decking, gravel, and other materials. You can mix and match hard landscaping with raised beds and pockets of planting to create an aesthetically pleasing design. If a low-maintenance garden is what you want, hard-scaping is the way forward. The fewer plant beds and areas of lawn you have, the less work is involved.
Large Containers and Raised Beds
Borders look lovely when well planted, but they can be a lot of work. If you can’t bear to be without a selection of plants and flowers, fear not because raised beds and larger containers are a great low-maintenance solution. Containers and pots are easier to maintain than traditional borders. They will need to be watered more often, but there are ways to automate this by using sprinkler systems. You can also use mulch to ensure containers don’t dry out too much in warm weather.
Use Weed Membrane
Keep weeds down by using weed membrane in any areas of the garden when you plant directly into beds. Any weeds that do take root will be easy to remove. Cover the weed membrane with a thick layer of bark so it’s invisible.
Choose Low Maintenance Plants
Choosing the right plants makes all the difference. Look for native species that don’t need much pruning or care. Shrubs are a lot easier to care for than perennials, plus they will grow larger and prevent weeds from colonising the area. They are also easier to plant when you use weed membrane.
Plant bulbs for spring colour. Sow wildflower seeds if you can’t stand the idea of deadheading and tidying. Hardy plants like Bergenia and ornamental grasses are also low maintenance. Ask at your local garden centre for planting suggestions or speak to us if you need help.
Low Maintenance Hedges
Hedges are an attractive feature of many gardens, but some types of hedges require more maintenance than others. Conifer hedges, for example, tend to grow quickly and need trimming every few months, which is not great if you are time poor.
Instead of planting a conifer hedge, try an evergreen such as holly instead. It will look good all year round, and you can snip bits off at Christmas.
Remember, the golden rules if you want a low-maintenance garden are to eliminate the lawn and only choose plants that don’t need special treatment and extra support. If you do both of these things, you won’t need to spend hours every week working in the garden.