Maintenance-free landscaping ideas

Written by tuesday fuller
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Maintenance-free landscaping ideas
Combination of a rock garden with wild grasses and flowers (alpine flowers image by Marian Maier from Fotolia.com)

Maintenance-free landscaping ideas offer the beauty of a professionally landscaped yard without the fuss needed to maintain that beauty. Let's face it, thanks to increasingly busy schedules and reduced gardening budgets, maintenance-free landscaping ideas make more sense than traditional gardens and landscaping. Maintenance-free landscapes also are safer to utilise in areas where there are steep slopes or soft soils that make mowing, weeding and watering a major inconvenience.

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Ground Cover

Grass and lawn maintenance take up a lot of time and money, two things that we would much rather spend on other things that we truly enjoy doing. Instead of wasting energy and effort on growing and maintaining grass, look to other ground-cover options that are low maintenance and look good as well. Low-growing ground-covering plants and ivies make ground cover and weed control an easy all-in-one process. Some ground covers bloom throughout the year, while others retain only their leaves throughout the cold seasons, providing an endless blanket of foliage, great for a natural landscaping design that blends with the surrounding environment. When picking ground-cover plants, ask your local garden supplier for species that grow naturally in your area. These types of plants do well without much watering or maintenance on your part.

Plants and Flowers

Part of the gardening process involves transplanting new flowers and plants into the garden. Eliminate much of this work by planting perennials that grow back yearly instead of annual flowers that die out every winter season. Ideally, you should consider native plants that require little or no maintenance, save for an annual trimming or raking to remove dead leaves. Minimise the amount of time that you spend taking care of your garden by limiting how many plants you have as well as grouping plants with similar needs together so that if you choose to water or fertilise, you can do so in one easy step.

Trees and Shrubs

Evergreens are perhaps the most common type of maintenance-free trees and shrubs. These species require little or no pruning and their shed leaves and needles become compost as a future food source for the plant. Purchase slow-growing trees and shrubs to reduce your pruning efforts. Conifers, viburnums and fuchsias are common species that are virtually maintenance free and provide colour and interest throughout the garden. Avoid planting trees and shrubs too closely to each other or to other plants within the landscaping since this will require extra effort to remove the tangled trees and repair the area.

Exotic Landscaping

Rock gardens are essentially the easiest way to incorporate maintenance-free landscaping into your design. Water features work well to soften landscapes that have many hard surfaces by introducing movement and sound. With the addition of underwater plants and fish, you can create a beautiful water retreat within your garden that operates smoothly without the fuss of pruning, planting and weeding that traditional gardens require. To reduce some of the care required for larger gardens, consider dedicating a part of your landscape for growing wild grasses. These grasses are beneficial to your native environment and, once established, they require little or no maintenance.

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