Set a Time Budget and Stick to it Much like dollars count, your time counts, too, when it comes to do it yourself landscaping. "You have to think about when you'll get to things," says Miller. "You have to realistically look at when you can get things done and if you want to eat up every nice-weather weekend. Don't overcommit and wind up disappointed."
Prized for both its flavor and its aroma, mint can be an incredible herb to have growing in a garden container. What’s more, its bright green leaves can bring in a pop of color. Left uncontrolled, however, mint can have a tendency to overrun an outdoor space. With this in mind, you will want to keep more invasive herbs, like mints, contained in pots in your kitchen garden. Pick your mint based on the flavor you want and whether you’d prefer it for tea or for flavoring food—you’ll be thrilled by mint’s wondrous varieties.
"In a nutshell, what is the best way to go about beautifying my yard?" I am sometimes asked this rather broad question, and it's a tough one to answer. There are so many variables in do-it-yourself landscaping, such as budget, skills, the climate of your region, your personal design tastes, how you'll be using your yard, etc. But there are certain steps you can take that are so sound that they readily suggest themselves as answers to this question.
Flagstone skirting a simple columnar fountain gives the impression of a path winding through a canyon. Yellow- and blue-flowering plants, such as agastache, butterfly bush, and Spanish broom, provide plenty of color near the entry and along the driveway and attract desired winged guests. The fountain in the center provides butterflies with a necessary supply of water.
You’ve seen those tomato planters on TV that grow tomatoes upside down, but for a few dollars you can get into vertical gardening by making your own. Start with a new, clean 5-gallon bucket and, using a utility knife, cut a circle out of the bottom that’s just large enough to feed a small determinate tomato plant through. Add a few smaller holes for drainage, then fill the bucket with potting soil and hang it wherever there’s sun.
We saved thousands going this same route where we hired a landscape architect to create a design. Ours was more like $700 for a 1/4 acre with a lot if detail. We have installed the plan ourselves. The front yard alone would have cost at least $6000 but we were able to create beds, borders, and put in the plantings for only $800 and this took three days of work. So happy we went this route.
Ortho Grass B Gon Garden Grass Killer is Ortho Grass B Gon Garden Grass Killer is a ready-to-use selective systemic grass killer that can be used to kill existing weedy grasses in and around ground covers plant beds landscapes individual shrubs and trees. And it won't harm listed landscape plants when used as directed. No mixing is required ... More + Product Details Close
Consult an Expert Even if you're convinced that you have what it takes for do-it-yourself landscaping, it may be worthwhile to budget a small fee to have a landscape professional help evaluate your ideas and come up with a concrete plan. "People have a fear of getting ripped off," Miller says. "But a designer can sit down with you and help you think about activities and goals and pull together a realistic budget. It's a shame when folks do a small area and later think, 'Oops, I put that in the wrong place.' They really need to think through all the pieces they might want, even if they won't put it in for years." Get tips to work with landscape professionals.
With most soils, do not apply all the water in a short period of time. If applied too quickly, water often runs off of thatchy turf, from sloped areas, or from turf growing on heavy clay or compacted soils. In these cases, it is more effective to apply only a portion of the water and move the sprinkler or switch to another station to water another section of the lawn. This allows water to soak into the soil rather than run off. An hour or so later, apply the rest of the water. Core cultivation (aeration) can resolve some infiltration problems by reducing thatch and compaction. Wetting agents may enhance water movement into the soil, but they should not be considered a cure-all, especially when compaction or thatch are problems.
The fence and bench are made of redwood—the fence features a light stain while the bench is natural—and Podocarpus were planted for privacy and greenery. A no-mow fescue on the mounds of the berm invite the boys to roll, tumble, and enjoy their backyard. Bluegrass is planted on the flat areas and recycled brick is used for a small patio. Making smart use of the space, those redwood benches also store outdoor toys when not being played with.
Use unique containers like vintage wooden boxes and buckets is a great way to bring harmony and symmetry to any container gardens. Since these are not designed with planting in mind, to make them function well be sure to drill drainage holes in each before planting. For a new take on the living and eating local approach, this variety of planters is filled with a mix of simple to grow and harvest edibles, like lettuce, and decoratives, like marigolds and geraniums. How better to bring the useful and the beautiful together in one simple, enjoyable idea—container gardening?
Despite their name, window boxes needn’t be hung only below windows. This charming barn gets even more character from being accented by window box plantings. Using whites and silvers for neutrals, the homeowner then accents with bold and bright pops of color, including selections from each of the primaries: red, yellow, and blue. In fact, set against the white and silver is a great deal of yellow. As she explains it, 'When I was studying graphic design in college, on the first day of class, my professor asked us to write down our least favorite color,' she recalls. 'I wrote, ‘yellow.’ So he made me use only that color for the entire semester. Now I love yellow, because I found out all the incredible things it can do to jolt the eye and bring light to shadow. Yellow works well with just about any other color. It makes you happy.'
Even if you don’t necessarily have a green thumb, this is one of the best cheap easy gardening ideas out there! You can easily create bloom boxes out of old wood you have already laying around the house, or even if you have to go out and purchase some, spare wood really isn’t expensive at all. Creating bloom boxes to sit outside windows gives the area a quaint garden look without overpowering the setup, so no matter what size of landscape you’re dealing with, these boxes create just enough charm for any setting.
Flowers always make a home seem more welcoming. Adorn your entrance with assorted annuals and perennials to keep your home awash with color all year long. Petunia, Snapdragon, Lily-of-the-Nile, and 'Gertrude Jekyll' roses are great additions to your entry mise-en-scene. Also, if you have only a small space between your house and the street, try constructing a low fence out in front of the yard. This little trick gives the illusion that your house is farther from the street than it really is, and it also makes a great space for planting flowers and vines. Perhaps there’s something to that “white picket fence” idea after all.