Six Steps to a Low-Maintenance Landscape

When you decide to upgrade property's landscape design, you should consider not only the final appearance and the total project cost of the project, but also how demanding the maintenance will be. And this is not something that you should put second! You are no doubt a busy homeowner, and time and money are always of the essence. Therefore you need a landscape design that does not demand you to spend more of either than you have. You need a low-maintenance landscape design plan!

Following are six tips to help you plan a low-maintenance landscape design.

Six Tips to a Low-Maintenance Landscape

1. Buy High-Quality, Long-Lasting Landscape Materials

If you are trying to limit your budget, you may end up purchasing cheap landscape materials. Inexpensive is okay as long as they are of high-quality and long lasting. But in most cases, you get what you pay for. And if you purchase cheap landscape material, you may end up spending more in the long run. Buy high-quality and long-lasting landscape materials right from the beginning – those that do not require frequent replacement. Fences, sidewalks, seating structures, furniture, steps, decks, patios, trellises, and gazebos should be sturdy and durable.

2. Keep Your Lawn Area to a Minimum

Landscaped yards with lawns are beautiful. But lawns can be expensive and high-maintenance. Raking and edging consumes an incredible amount of money and time, not to mention the regular liming, fertilizing, mowing, watering, rolling, thatching, and application of pesticides just to keep a lawn well maintained. Use plants, ground covers, shrubs, and easy-to-care-for trees to substitute for the excessive open lawn space.

A good low-maintenance alternative to lawn is moss. Moss can adapt to areas where grass refuses to grow. Another low-maintenance grass alternative is clover. Clovers are a cost-effective, insect-resistant, and drought-tolerant ground cover and an excellent alternative for grass.

3. Avoid High-Maintenance or Problem Plants

Live oak, red maple, butterfly bush Virginia willow, dwarf bamboo, sedum, gardenias, rain lilies — these are some of the hard-to-maintain trees, shrubs, perennials, and ground covers you'll want avoid. Instead, look for landscape plants that can adapt to extreme temperature; are more tolerant to dry or wet periods; more resistant to fungal problems, disease, and insects; and more adaptive to poor soil conditions.

4. Consider a Rock Garden

Instead of using greens, why not use grays? A rock garden is an ideal substitute for high-maintenance plants, shrubs, lawns, and even trees. Rock gardens do not require regular trimming, mowing, watering, etc.

5. Place Plants in Masses

Planting in masses not only assures that the plants grow densely and consistently but also makes mowing and trimming edges easier. These plant groupings can also obscure less-than-lovely fences, views of neighbors, or bins.

6. Place the Right Size Plants in the Right Places

Tall trees or large plants placed underneath electrical and utility lines, sheds, home windows, and doorway entries often need constant pruning to prevent them from exceeding the desired height and thickness. The problem is, during the planning, this is not thought about because any tree or plant is yet to be seen as a problem. Nonetheless, it is important to know the characteristics of the plants that you are planning to use in your landscape design. Ask the nursery owner for plants that grow within your desired height.

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