Landscaping for Beginners: Love for the Outdoors Not Required

Ready to landscape, but not sure where to start? Here are some ideas requiring little skill to get your yard looking its best and keeping it that way. 

landscaping ideas for beginners

You may not be an “outside person,” but that doesn’t mean you want everyone who drives by your house to know it. Fortunately, you don’t need a green thumb to have your home’s landscaping look like you’ve spent hours in the soil. Here are a few easy “landscaping for beginners” ideas that may even make your yard become one of the nicest on the block. Best of all? You don’t have to spend a fortune to make it happen.

First, Make a Plan

The best way to tackle your landscaping ideas — even if they’re easy landscaping ideas — is to start with a plan. Determine what areas of your yard you want to focus on, how much effort you want to put in and what your overall budget is. You don’t want to just show up at the nursery or home improvement store without a plan. That will do nothing but make your hatred for the “great outdoors” grow even stronger.

Rock and Roll

When it comes to easy landscaping projects, it doesn’t get much easier than rocks. They’re fairly simple to spread, they look fantastic and they basically last forever. Rocks and stepping stones can be used for both filling and borders in your flower beds. They can be used for easy-access pathways, or they can simply be used to take up space in areas where it’s difficult to grow and cultivate grass and other plants (like areas that stay shady all day). One important piece of advice? First put down some weed barrier cloth to make sure you don’t have to do any maintenance after the rocks are in place. Bonus Tip: Utilizing rock can be a little pricey, if you aren’t careful. For a frugal alternative to purchasing the stones, consider making your own out of concrete. You can even add personal touches to the DIY stones to make them stand out even more!

Choose Plants Wisely

Perhaps your biggest decision when it comes to landscaping is deciding what to plant. The wisest advice we can give you? Choose perennials, the plants that come back to life every year. Likewise, choose young plants, shrubs and trees, as well as plants that are native to your area. That way, you invest the least amount of money and have the best chance of keeping them alive and never having to replace them. In fact, if you suddenly get the itch to do more landscaping after you’ve tackled these easy landscaping projects (and we hope you do), you can often take pieces of your existing perennials in future years and plant them elsewhere. Talk about stretching your investments!

Soak Plants With Hoses

Have you been putting off landscaping projects simply because you’re dreading having to water the plants every day? Have no fear. If standing over your plants for hours on end just to keep them alive isn’t your cup of tea, consider the minimal investment required with running soaker hoses. They’re a much cheaper alternative to in-ground sprinkler systems, and they’re much more effective at releasing water near the plant roots than a sprinkler, so the plants get the adequate amount of moisture and nutrients they need.

Get a Manicured Look With Mulch

When you drive by your neighbors’ houses, you're likely to notice immediately if they have mulched flower beds. That’s because no matter what color the mulch is, it always seems to make the beds looks pristine. If the smell of manure turns you off, consider this: It’s inexpensive, you don’t have to mow it or water it, it fertilizes your plants and it prevents weeds. You can’t go wrong with that.

Consider Ornamentals and Ground Covers

Don’t be fooled by the name. Ornamental grasses aren’t akin to garden gnomes or sundials. Rather, mixed with other ground covers, they’re the ultimate landscaping tool for people who don’t really want to landscape. The best part? They only need to be trimmed once a year. If you have a large area to cover, and you don’t plan on spending a lot of time keeping it maintained, consider letting the ornamental grasses and ground covers do the hard work.

Ready to get down to business? Who knows? Once you get into the groove, maybe you won’t end up hating the outdoors after all. 

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