Gardening evokes either a deep-seated passion or an aversion. Enthusiasts revel in its charms, while those who hate gardening yearn for outdoor allure. Balancing such aspirations with the demands of a bustling life—complete with children and a full-time career—often becomes an insurmountable challenge. The desire to cultivate a green haven remains, yet time remains an elusive luxury.
For me, I have little spare time and I really don’t want to spend it gardening, so a low maintenance garden is the perfect solution whilst I have a young family, am career focused and would rather spend my spare time at the gym or travelling.
I do love nature and the outdoors, don’t get me wrong, but I just don’t have the time to dedicate to making the perfect garden right now. So whether you are short on time or you really hate gardening, here are some ideas for a low-maintenance garden that won’t take up all of your precious time:
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A luscious lawn is definitely appealing, but it never stops growing, particularly in the summer months! If you don’t fancy lugging a lawnmower up and down every week in the warmer months, then consider less grass in your garden. Add patios and decking for different textures and sections in the garden.
An alternative approach is to eliminate grass entirely. Although I appreciate the lush green aspect of a garden, opting for a grass-free area can greatly simplify maintenance. You have the opportunity to introduce vibrant colours back into your outdoor space through the use of planters, pots, and various types of shrubbery. Incorporating a mix of different surfaces not only adds a delightful textural dimension to the area but also opens up creative possibilities for dividing your garden into distinct zones to optimise its utility.
Embracing options like decking, verandas, outdoor kitchens, ponds, raised platforms, and planters with integrated seating can utterly transform the space. The best part is that these elements are remarkably easy to upkeep, granting you a visually appealing and well-organized garden without the demands of constant maintenance.
One of the most frustrating aspects of gardening is the challenge of the cord when mowing the lawn; plugging in extension leads, the lawnmower turning off when you go too far and pull it out the socket, making sure you don’t run over the cord, etc!
Of course you can always choose a petrol lawnmower, but that’s not very environmentally friendly. Instead, there are now electric cordless options which means you can forget the hassle of the cord and run it off 100% renewable energy.
Now, if you want real grass but you don’t want to mow it, then I even have an option for you! There are now automatic robotic lawnmowers which will mow your lawn without you having to lift a finger! How clever! If you’re shopping online for a lawn mower then don’t forget to check out a website such as Latest Deals to find the best prices and offers from top retailers.
Plant slow growing plants and succulents
Consider incorporating slow-growing plants and a selection of resilient succulents into your garden design. This choice is particularly beneficial if you prefer to avoid frequent pruning and upkeep. Succulents, in particular, demand minimal attention, often thriving without frequent watering. If the thought of managing continuous maintenance for bushes and flowers feels overwhelming, you might find a cactus and succulent garden to be the ideal low-maintenance remedy.
Here are a few ideas for the types of plants and succulents you can consider:
- Japanese Maple (Acer palmatum): With its elegant foliage and compact size, it adds a touch of sophistication to your garden.
- Dwarf Conifers: These come in various shapes and colors, offering year-round interest without rapid growth.
- Hebe (Hebe spp.): These evergreen shrubs produce attractive flowers and require minimal care.
- Lavender (Lavandula spp.): Not only do they smell delightful, but their slow growth and drought tolerance make them a great addition.
- Sempervivum (Hens and Chicks): These hardy succulents form rosettes and can thrive in various conditions.
- Echeveria: Known for their rosette-shaped leaves in a range of colors, they make excellent container plants.
- Agave: These sculptural succulents add a bold architectural element to your garden and require little maintenance.
- Aloe: Besides their unique appearance, aloe plants have medicinal uses and are relatively undemanding.
- Sedum: These versatile succulents come in various sizes and shapes, often flowering during the summer.
With a mix of slow-growing plants and succulents, you can achieve a visually pleasing and low-maintenance garden that provides year-round enjoyment with minimal effort.
Creating a visually appealing and low-maintenance garden that maintains its beauty throughout the entire year can be achieved by incorporating a diverse selection of evergreen plants. Evergreens are an excellent choice as they retain their foliage and color all year long, providing a consistent backdrop for your outdoor space. Here are some suggestions and additional details to help you enhance your garden using evergreens:
Types of Evergreens:
- Conifers: Incorporate a mix of coniferous evergreens such as pine, spruce, and fir trees. Their unique textures and shades of green can add depth and character to your garden.
- Boxwood: These versatile shrubs can be pruned into various shapes, making them ideal for creating formal hedges, topiaries, or decorative accents.
- Juniper: With a range of sizes and colors, junipers offer excellent ground cover and can be used to provide structure and interest in different garden areas.
- Holly: Known for their glossy green leaves and bright red berries, hollies can provide a festive touch during the winter months.
- Arborvitae: These tall, narrow evergreens are excellent for creating privacy screens or windbreaks.
Make watering easy
If you do have some plants and flowers then they’ll need watering during hot and dry spells. To make this much easier, you’ll want to ensure you have access to water outdoors. Install an outside tap if you don’t already have one, as well as a water butt to save money and reuse rainwater. Ben reviewed the Verve auto rewind garden hose and this saves so much time as we no longer have to wind the hose back in ourselves – it retracts automatically!
Make the maintenance easy
To make sure you’re not feeling frustrated every time you need to do some work in the garden, you should ensure you have a shed or suitable storage for your garden tools. Make sure they are easy for you to access and grab in a flash without having to dig through piles of clutter! Keeping everything organised and tidy will ensure any garden tasks are tackled with a less stressed mind.
Looking for more inspiration? Try these ideas to simplify your gardening input.
- Mulch: Applying a layer of mulch around plants helps retain moisture, suppress weeds, and maintain a tidy appearance.
- Perennials: Opt for perennial plants that come back year after year, saving you from replanting each season.
- Native Plants: Choose native plants that are well adapted to your region’s climate and require less intervention.
- Drip Irrigation: Install a drip irrigation system to efficiently water your plants without wastage.
- Self-Watering Planters: Use self-watering planters that provide consistent moisture to plants, reducing the need for frequent watering.
- Raised Beds: Create raised beds, which can improve drainage and make weeding and planting more accessible.
- Low-Growing Ground Covers: Replace high-maintenance lawns with low-growing ground covers that require less mowing.
- Rock Gardens: Incorporate a rock garden with drought-resistant plants that thrive in low-water conditions.
- Paved Pathways: Introduce paved pathways to prevent weed growth and make navigating the garden easier.
- Minimalistic Design: Embrace a minimalist garden design with open spaces and clean lines, requiring fewer elements to maintain.
- Garden Fabric: Use garden fabric or landscape cloth to suppress weeds in specific areas.
- Self-Sustaining Ecosystems: Create self-sustaining ecosystems like rain gardens or butterfly gardens that require less intervention.
- Windbreaks: Plant windbreaks like tall shrubs or trees to shield your garden from harsh winds and reduce potential damage.
- Hydroponic or Aeroponic Gardens: Explore hydroponic or aeroponic gardening methods for efficient and controlled plant growth.
- Artificial Turf: If grass isn’t appealing, consider artificial turf that requires no mowing, watering, or maintenance.
- Outdoor Art and Features: Incorporate outdoor art, sculptures, or decorative features to divert attention from areas that might require more maintenance.
- Low-Maintenance Edible Garden: Plant low-maintenance herbs, fruits, and vegetables that require minimal care yet yield delicious results.
- Rain Barrels: Set up rain barrels to collect rainwater for watering your plants, reducing your reliance on tap water.
- No-Fuss Hardscaping: Integrate hardscaping elements like rocks, gravel, and stones that require virtually no upkeep.
- Garden Edging: Use garden edging to define plant beds and prevent grass from encroaching.
- Automatic Timers: Install automatic timers for watering systems, ensuring consistent watering without constant adjustments.
- No-Prune Plants: Choose plant varieties that naturally maintain a tidy shape and don’t require frequent pruning.
- Minimalist Container Gardens: Create small, well-planned container gardens that are easier to manage than larger landscapes.
- Garden Design Services: Consider seeking professional garden design services that cater to your preferences for a low-maintenance space.
If high maintenance gardening isn’t for you, then hopefully these tips will help you begin to plan a much more low maintenance outdoor space that you can begin to enjoy rather than dread!