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Lawn & Garden

6 Ideas to Spice Up Your Outdoor Area on a Budget

Whether it's your front door or your backyard, we have some ideas how you can change things up without breaking the bank. Use these tips to spice up your outdoor area for the summer when you have family and friends over.

Patio ideas on a budget

Whether you’re looking to boost your home’s curb appeal or simply create a more inviting backyard space, you can do a lot to improve your outdoor area without spending a lot of money. Planting trees and shrubs, adding custom accents, installing new lighting or just laying some new mulch in your garden beds can refresh and rejuvenate the exterior feel of your home, making your yard a more attractive place to relax with friends and play with the kids. Let’s take a look at some budget-friendly yard and patio ideas to spruce up your outdoor space:

Add Pops of Color in Planters

Planters are one of the easiest ways to add color to your porch, patio or backyard. You can buy planters of all kinds at your local home and garden store and fill them with the annuals or perennials of your choice. If you’re looking to sell, add curb appeal by arranging planters around your front door or on your front porch. Mix and match a variety of foliage and flowers in each planter to add interest.

Looking for a simple DIY project, or just not satisfied with the planter options on offer at your local home improvement store? Making your own unique planters is one of the easiest and most fun crafts to do at home, with or without the kids. Stack terracotta pots on a metal pole for a cool, topsy-turvy planter, or hollow out a log to add texture and dimension to a flower bed. You’re limited only by your imagination.

Refresh Your Beds with New Mulch

You’d be surprised how much a fresh layer of mulch can improve the look of your garden beds. Weed first and install any new plants you want to put in your beds. A one- to two-inch layer of fine mulch, or a three- to four-inch layer of coarse mulch will keep weeds from growing in your garden beds and give them a cleaner appearance. They’ll also help keep the soil moist for your plants.

Shed Some Light on the Situation

Don’t simply rely on your back porch light to provide the lighting you need, especially if you have a large backyard. Most trendy backyard designs these days include some additional lighting sources to make after-dusk hangouts more convenient. It’s easy to add more lighting to your yard and you don’t necessarily have to call an electrician.

Backyard fire pits, for example, make great DIY projects and add light and warmth to your patio or backyard design. Other backyard lighting options include solar lights, battery-powered lanterns, string lights, and candles or tiki torches. For the latter, choose a citronella option to keep insects away.

Install a Trellis

A garden trellis, perhaps combined with some climbing plants, can be an affordable way to add some striking personality to your front or backyard. Add one as a focal point in the back of your garden or to delineate the entrance to a vegetable patch or sitting area. Trellises can offer great support for rambling rose bushes and flowering vines or provide a place for a hanging planters, bird houses or other decorative elements.

Plant Perennials

Annuals are nice for adding quick color to a flowerbed, but perennials come back year after year. What’s more, a carefully cultivated perennial bed requires diminishing maintenance each year, as the plants thrive and fill out the space. Because many perennials can be easily propagated using rooting hormone or need to be separated regularly, they’re a more affordable way to expand your garden beds.

Trees and shrubs are also a good way to add shade or texture to your outdoor space, but if you go this route, save money by buying young plants. Young trees and shrubs are easy for anyone to plant, while large and medium-sized specimens may require specialized equipment and training. Trees and shrubs will grow to fill the space they’re in, so make sure you leave them enough room.

Customize Your Accents

There are all kinds of ways to create your own unique garden accents, from building a fairytale village in your flower beds to creating concrete stepping stones or garden balls. Use colorful glass bottles or ceramic plates to create a one-of-a-kind garden border. Build your own garden statues from salvaged metal, construct a DIY water feature or train your own topiary. If it’s weatherproof, you can add it to your outdoor design scheme.

Changing your outdoor space doesn’t have to mean spending a lot of money. You can make over your yard with a little elbow grease, some creativity and a few inexpensive supplies. In the end, you’ll have a porch, patio or garden to be proud of – and one that calls your name at the end of a long day.

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