Warm weather means outdoor barbeques, playing with friends in backyard pools, and nights by a bonfire. As many people spend more time outside in the summer months than at any other time, the following low-maintenance landscaping tips will help you have more fun and do less work.
1. Water Properly
Watering your lawn does not mean watering more — it means you need to change the way you water. The grass is more resilient than most people give it credit for, so keep these tips in mind:
- Water your plants deeply.
- Water in the early morning or evening so it does not evaporate. Grass needs about one inch of water per week.
- Consider a drip irrigation system over a sprinkler or hose. Drip irrigation will water your grass slowly so that water does not evaporate as much during the day.
2. Keep your grass healthy
- Aerate your lawn every year to improve oxygen flow and check the pH balance of your soil to ensure it stays healthy
- Fertilize regularly
- Remove weeds as they steal nutrients from your grass.
3. Re-learn Your Mowing Technique
Proper mowing techniques will keep your lawn healthy. Edge your lawn first, then use a trimmer, then mow. By edging the lawn first, you create less work for yourself and make it easier to maneuver the mower in the yard, ensuring a uniform cut. Many people keep their grass mowed short to decrease the frequency with which they have to mow, but this is not the case. Cutting off more than one-third of the blade of grass can damage the rest of the plant and too-short grass lets more moisture rise from the soil.
4. Create Great Outdoor Living Spaces
The more outdoor living space you create, the less yard maintenance you have in the long run — and the more space you will have to entertain in warmer weather. Creating more outdoor living spaces in your yard lends itself to low-maintenance landscaping. This is because you can extend your space while having fewer grassy areas to care for. Think about installing a stone patio or a deck to relax on.
5. Invest In Mulch For Your Flowerbeds
Around outdoor living spaces and flowerbeds, think about adding mulch instead of grass or leaving dirt. Mulch not only breaks down, fertilizes your plants, and prevents weeds, but it is low-maintenance because you don’t have to mow or water it. It’s inexpensive, and you only have to replace it in the spring. Mulch also prevents weeds from popping up in your flower beds throughout the summer, especially if you lay protective matting underneath.
6. Fill Your Yard With Perennials Instead Of Annuals
When planning out your flower beds this summer, think about longevity. It will save you time in the long run and will certainly save you money. When thinking low-maintenance, definitely opt for perennials over annuals because they will come back year after year. For instance, hens-and-chicks are one plant that will come back and can grow in almost any terrain. Annuals are pretty (they have the best blooms in a greenhouse), but you will have to re-buy them every year if you don’t collect their seeds, and you will have to spend time preparing your beds and planting your flowers. When you go for perennials, however, you just plant and do occupational pruning.
7. Make Use Of Potted Plants
If you really want to simplify your gardening, think about making use of potted plants in your landscaping. It not only makes a yard more low-maintenance but also more versatile. The benefits speak for themself. Pots allow you to move and arrange your plants around your yard however you want. If, for instance, you’re having a party on your patio, you can move them to that area to really spruce it up and take your aesthetics up a notch. For an added pop of colour, coordinate the flowers to the season — it will drive your guests wild! Definitely try whites and pinks in the spring and summer, and switch to yellows and reds in the fall.
8. Pick Native Plants
If you are not quite ready to take the potted plant plunge, think about planting native plants in your yard like the beautiful bee balm pictured above. Just like you should plant grass that is specific to your region, pick native plants for less upkeep and to help protect the natural biodiversity of your business. If you pick plants that are native or grow well in a specific zone or area, it will keep watering and pruning down and save you time and money during the hot months.
9. Work With What You Have
If you have an area where turf is thin or just won’t grow, swap it for some easy-care ornamental grasses and sedge. These plants bring texture and year-long interest to any yard, and their care routine is beyond simple. An annual trim keeps most grasses in check, while sedges need very little annual grooming. A quick brush in early to mid-spring with gloved hands is usually enough to pull out dead stems and trigger new growth.