Contrary to popular belief, creating and maintaining a beautiful outdoor space or backyard doesn’t have to be hectic and time-consuming. In fact, you’ll be shocked to learn that your backyard can remain evergreen and beautiful without having to spend so much of your time and resources.
To transform your backyard into a low-maintenance outdoor space, we recommend observing the following proven tips:
1. Replace the Lawn with Hardscape
Unlike softscape, which requires a significant amount of effort to maintain, hardscape is easy to manage since you will be dealing with non-living things. Softscape includes everything in your lawn or backyard that grows like trees, shrubs, perennial flowers, and succulents. Hardscape, on the other hand, entails non-living elements like stone, bricks, and concrete. Maintaining a perfect balance between hardscape and softscape will enable you to transform your yard and make it low maintenance. Here are some of the proven ways you can use hardscape to your advantage:
Build a Strong Foundation
As you decide to hardscape your lawn, it is vital to establish a solid foundation. A 6- to 8-inch layer of tightly fitted stones like pea stones will toughen your surface. A stone-filled surface will prevent the growth of weeds while also keeping your patio evenly level.
Replace Grass with Other Materials
While grass contributes significantly to the overall beauty of your outdoor area, it also increases the effort required in maintaining your lawn. To make your lawn maintenance a breeze, we recommend replacing grass with materials like decomposed granite, low maintenance, and drought-resistant plants as well as adding paved areas.
Right Replacement Materials
Not every material makes a good replacement for lawn grass. As a result, you have to be extra careful to ensure that you use hardscape with the right substances. Some of the best materials to hardscape include brick, concrete, decomposed granite, and pavers.
2. Create an Outdoor Living Space
If you want to avoid the hectic tasks associated with lawn or yard maintenance, then you might consider adding living space in your outdoor area. Here are some of the options worth considering:
A cabana can either be temporary or permanent—either way, it adds a festive spot to kick back with friends. Cabanas are not hard to set up, especially temporary ones. However, it’s worth it to take the time to set up a permanent cabana if you’re sure you no longer want a lawn.
To avoid mowing the lawn, weeding, or watering plants, a canopy can be another great option. A well set-up canopy can act as an outdoor recreational area or a shady spot to relax in your downtime.
Replacing your lawn with neatly assembled coloured concrete patios can significantly reduce your workload when it comes to lawn maintenance. Add some decorative low-maintenance plants between them, and you have a stunning no-mow space to enjoy.
Rustic Fire Pit
Setting up a rustic fire pit will not only reduce your workload but also make your outdoor area more aesthetically pleasing. You can set up a fire pit of your preference, depending on the size of your yard. Large-sized lawns might require relatively large fire pits with seating.
Floating Island Outdoor Deck
A floating island outdoor deck more often than not occupies a large amount of space due to the base and sitting areas. If you love hosting friends and family out in the yard, then you should consider setting up an outdoor deck to occupy your unused lawn space.
Acquiring a hammock stand will almost certainly give a new look to your backyard. Even better, the space occupied by the hammock stand will lower your labour in maintaining the lawn.
Sandbox for kids
Instead of setting up huge structures in your lawn, you can choose the easier option of setting up a sandbox right in the middle or edge of your lawn. The space occupied by the sandbox will save you the effort and time required to manage an entire backyard.
3. Xeriscape or Incorporate Rock Gardens
Xeriscaping and building rock gardens can help make your yard extremely low maintenance. Here are some of the main activities you will need to prioritize:
Pick a Good Spot
To make xeriscaping or rock gardening work, you must select an area that you find difficult to maintain.
Select Interesting Rocks
Filling the identified space with several crushed stones will prevent the growth of weed and plants. Crushed stones will also help fill up the yard space presentably as opposed to piling up a bunch of junk.
Mix with flowers
When selecting plants for your landscape, it is advisable to go for drought-resistant species as it will nullify the need for frequent watering and monitoring.
Build Backyard Pond with Waterfall
Although the suggestion might appear difficult at first, it’s easy to maintain once you have it set up. The backyard pond and waterfall will occupy a large chunk of your backyard, thus leaving the maintaining solely for the pond.
Water Less, Mulch More
You should consider mulching plants more as opposed to watering. Mulching helps increase water conservation and retention, thus saving you the time and effort of constant watering.
4. Choose Low-Maintenance Plants
If you want to have a low maintenance backyard but still have it evergreen and beautiful, then you should consider selecting low maintenance plants such as the following:
Always prioritize native plants as they are perfectly suited to your area of residence. This means they won't require regular watering or monitoring. Perennials and other low maintenance options like Montauk Daisies, Evergreen, Succulents, Black-eyed Susans, and Ornamental grass can significantly lower your maintenance efforts.
Making Use of a Container Garden or Potted Plants
A container garden will help you avoid activities such as weeding since foreign plants rarely grow on potted plants or garden containers. Even better, you will not need to check on issues such as soil moisture or mulching to maintain soil humidity.
5. Consider the Idea of Artificial Grass
A backyard wouldn’t be complete without grass. However, if you’re busy with work and don’t have the time for proper maintenance, synthetic grass can be used. You can use artificial grass for retaining walls such as the photo shown above.
Using synthetic grass can help you avoid a lot of struggle with regard to maintenance. Here are some of the ways artificial grass can come in handy:
Usage Between Concrete Pavers and Natural stones
Synthetic grass can be used on pavers, and unlike natural grass, it will not need regular maintenance or cutting.
Contemporary Checker Design
Synthetic grass comes in various designs that help you avoid the struggles associated with mowing the lawn.
6. Add Features to Your Backyard
If you want to beautify your backyard but lack time to give it your undivided attention, then you should consider the following:
Installing and Automatic Irrigation System
An automatic irrigation system will help you
avoid the highly demanding task of watering plants regularly. You can install an irrigation system that meets the demands of your plants and set it to water your backyard frequently throughout the day.
If the cost of watering your plants and lawn grass is proving too costly, you might want to consider harvesting rainwater. All you will need is a rain barrel to collect water and hose pipe to water your plants. Harvesting rainwater will help you to avoid additional costs associated with watering or irrigating plants.
Add a Low Maintenance Outdoor Appliance
Durable outdoor appliances such as a barbecue will help in filling up yard space and consequently reduce the need to maintain the entire yard. You can even set up a trampoline to entertain your family.
Install Garden Edging
Garden edging helps in separating different parts of a lawn. Once installed, it is low maintenance and occupies a significant amount of lawn space that would otherwise require attention.
7. Create a Lawnless Backyard
A lawnless backyard can come in handy in lowering overall maintenance. Some of the ideas you can use instead of lawn include:
Meadow planting can help provide a cheap and low-maintenance alternative to garden plants that would thrive in a backyard. This option requires you to plant similar plants and allow them to thrive off each other provided the growth conditions are conducive.
Use Moss or Clover Instead of Grass
Grass is expensive and time-consuming to maintain. Moss and clover are cheaper and easy to maintain alternatives that will leave your backyard looking evergreen and well cared for.
Mistakes to Avoid
Avoid having a lawn. If possible, we recommend paving instead.
Maintaining pavement is a walk in the park since all you will need to do is sweep away the dirt as opposed to regularly mowing grass.
Maintaining non-native plants in your garden is another way to overwork yourself, especially if all you want is a low maintenance yard. It is advisable to focus on native plants whose needs can be satisfied without having to mulch, add fertilizers, or water regularly.
Using flowers to add colour is a huge mistake if you want to have a low maintenance garden. Instead of using flowers, we recommend using objects to add a bit of life to your outdoor space. Flowers are difficult to maintain and will need you to monitor, water, and mulch regularly in a bid to maintain them.
Benefits of No-Fuss Low Maintenance Backyard
A low-maintenance backyard is appropriate since it extends living space to the outdoors. By setting up structures outside, you will be putting your
backyard to good use as family members can use the outdoor structures for entertainment and relaxation.
Additionally, a low-maintenance backyard is also vital in reducing the overall costs of running a garden. For instance, using drought-resistant plants helps in cutting down costs associated with watering or irrigation.
Even better, the creation of structures such as pavements, garden edging, and a rustic fire pit, among others, can help increase the value of your property. Such developments can come in handy when looking to sell your property.
You don’t have to be a gardening or landscape enthusiast to enjoy a beautiful, well-managed backyard. Observing the above tips will ensure that your backyard is easy to maintain throughout the year regardless of the season.