Over the years I’ve written countless blogs about crafting the perfect interior for your home but not much about your home’s exterior. I’ll be quick to say that landscaping is often not at the top of everyone’s to-do list, and not everyone has a knack for it.
For those of you Do-It-Yourselfers, you can have a beautiful yard without the high cost of hiring professionals. Here are five tips from Bob Villa (https://www.bobvila.com/slideshow/the-invincible-yard-17-ideas-for-lazy-landscaping) that will have you enjoying your outdoor space with the minimum effort.
Go Native. Plants adapted to their environments long before people did. Native species are a wise choice for the laid-back landscaper. Native plants require less fertilizer, water, pesticides, and overall care than plants brought in by settlers.
Borders without Bother. For interesting edges without the effort, try clumping monkey grass (Liriope muscari) along flower beds, borders, and walkways. This Asian native is hardy; stands up to dogs, deer, bugs, and weeds; and does well in a variety of soils and climates. Monkey grass can grow to about 15 inches, so trim it if you wish or go long.
Less Is More. Rather than crowd a bed with lots of plants you’ll need to tend, put in just a few high-impact, high-performance varieties. One or two nice trees and some powerhouse perennials mean more time to sit back and relax.
Set in Succulents. Can’t be bothered watering your plants, then succulents such as echeveria and agave) are your garden friends. Tough, colorful, and captivating, they also play well with others, so mixing them up adds more excitement to your landscape. Drainage is key, however: Put these shallow-rooting, sun-loving plants in raised beds with porous, well-aerated soil.
Rocks Rock. Strew irregularly shaped rocks around for the no-sweat simplicity of paving with a softer, more organic vibe. Gravel may be man-made and is ideal for high-traffic areas or natural, which is smoother but less stable and should be used where traffic is light.
Landscaping Adds Value of Your Property
Landscaping can add tens of thousands of dollars to the value of your property. In fact, it is one of the few home improvements you can make that not only adds value immediately, but also increases in value as the years go by. While interior decor and design concepts regularly go out of style and mechanical systems wear down, plants grow fuller and more robust as the years go by.
Bottom Line: Regardless of what TV commercials and advertisements proclaim, the perfect mower, soil or mulch will not do all the work for you. While mowing the lawn can be a chore, adding other features that require less upkeep can give every homeowner more time to enjoy the yard and adds real dollar value to your home’s value.
Lay Groundwork for Better Home Value with Artful Landscaping: https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/mortgages/landscape-better-home-value
Landscaping Tips That Can Help Sell Your Home: https://www.hgtv.com/design/outdoor-design/landscaping-and-hardscaping/landscaping-tips-that-can-help-sell-your-home
Easy Lawns (Brooklyn Botanic Garden All-Region Guide) – December 31, 2001, by Brooklyn Botanic Garden