If your home's landscape looks run-down and dismal, you'll often feel run-down and dismal. You won't be excited to host barbecues in your backyard, and you may not even want to have friends stop by for fear that they'll judge your home by its exterior. But as much as you're dismayed about your landscape, you may not have thousands to spend on a whole-yard makeover. Luckily, there are a few simple gardening services that can have a huge impact on the appearance of your yard — but that also won't break the bank.
It's amazing what a fresh layer of mulch can do for your garden beds. Not only will mulch make the garden beds look tidier and stand out against your lawn, but it will also keep weed growth at bay so your garden beds look nicer all year long. You can buy wood mulch for as little as $30 a cubic yard, and most yards can be mulched with just a yard or two of product. You'll pay a little extra if you want the garden center to also spread the mulch when they deliver it.
If you do not want to worry about remulching in the future, consider going with gravel or rubber mulch rather than wood. It will cost more up-front, but it won't deteriorate like wood. Gravel is also a smarter choice if termites are an issue in your area. Wood mulch can sometimes attract them.
2. Border Hedges
Some yards really need an outline in order to look pulled together and tidy. Yet, installing a fence can be quite expensive. A good alternative is to have a hedge installed along one or more sides of your yard.
Boxwoods are readily available and quite inexpensive. You can have a few planted, and within a year or two, they will grow together to form a dense hedge. Since boxwoods grow slowly, you really only need to have them pruned once or twice a year, which saves on maintenance costs. If you don't like the look of boxwoods, other good hedge shrubs include juniper and English holly.
Homeowners who rely primarily on annuals to keep their gardens full often end up with dismal-looking garden beds if they don't get to planting flowers on time in the spring. Planting annuals every year is also a pretty expensive way to garden since you have to buy new plants every spring. Adding some perennials to your garden beds will ensure they stay fuller and more vibrant, year after year.
Perennials, if you're not already aware, are plants that come back year after year. Hostas, yarrow, peonies, and Shasta daisies are popular choices. You can have them planted once, quite affordably, and they'll provide you with years of beauty.
4. Grass Overseeding
Maybe your lawn looks pretty sparse, and that's why your landscape is so embarrassing. Replanting all new turf or sod can cost thousands, but you probably don't have to go this far to get a nicer lawn.
Arrange to have a garden service overseed your lawn in the fall. This means they will scatter grass seed over the entire lawn, concentrating on the bare spots. They will probably also apply weed killer at the same time to ensure the weeds don't out-compete the new grasses. Your lawn should grow lusher over the coming months as the original seeds sprout and the new grass releases its own seeds, too.
If your yard looks a bit worse for wear, don't dismay. There are plenty of ways to enjoy a fresher, greener lawn and a more vibrant garden without spending a fortune.