While gardening for many may be an enjoyable pastime, a hobby that gets them active and out into the fresh air, for many others, a garden may start to represent hard work and an overwhelming space that requires constant care and attention that they can no longer give.
It may be that they are getting older or suffering from ill health and no longer have the strength or energy to spend hours trimming, mowing, and weeding. They may simply want to spend more time on other pursuits, take up a new hobby, or travel some more.
However, they are not yet ready to give up their outside space because when it comes down to it, they enjoy the garden’s aesthetics and having access to outside space.
Whichever camp you fall into, we have highlighted a few ways in which you can reduce the workload of your outside space, freeing you up to take your life in whatever direction you like.
Create a ‘no dig’ garden
Who would have thought that weeding your garden actually encourages more weeds to grow? Digging itself releases seeds into the atmosphere that may otherwise have lain dormant underground. Feed your flower beds with mulch and allow them to bed down and find their own rhythm, resisting the temptation to dig it over. There may be a pain barrier to go through (a bit like growing out a particular hairstyle), but you’ll reap the benefits afterwards when you enjoy a thriving, fertile flower bed which requires minimal maintenance.
Install some fake lawn
Although it may have a bad reputation, sometimes fake grass is the perfect solution – particularly in hard-to-reach areas of your garden. Replacing patches of lawn with artificial grass midway between the awkward corner of your garden will completely eliminate any maintenance issues (for more details, check Artificial Lawn Company) and ensure a year-round, vibrant and practical finish.
Make mulch your best friend
Mulch is a really magical ingredient in your garden. Organic mulch is made from decomposing leaves, bark and grass clippings, manure, and compost. When spread around your garden, mulch is perfect for retaining the moisture content of the soil, suppressing the weeds, and re-invigorating the soil with nutrients. By mulching your garden, you will, in time, spend less time weeding, watering and fertilizing and more time sitting back and enjoying the benefits of its nutrient-dense effects on your plants.
Change your plants
While some plants and bushes require constant pruning and care, there are others that thrive by just being left to do their own thing – particularly if you give them a good dollop of mulch every now and again. Choosing some low-maintenance plants will save you time and work year after year. Low-maintenance plants include hardy geraniums that require no deadheading and will flower for months on end. And never underestimate the power of a bulb to keep popping its head up year after year. Crocus, daffodils, and snowdrops will bring colour and life to your garden spring after spring. Alliums and lilies will crop up summer after summer. And autumn crocus and nerines will give you that final boost of color into the winter.
Add a rock garden
While they’re not renowned for being the most beautiful, rocks are certainly low-maintenance outdoor decoration solutions. Alone, rocks can have the opposite effect of creating an aesthetic; however, a rock garden can be visually appealing when properly organized. Not only will this incorporate some texture into your garden, but you won’t be required to care for the rocks, and they’ll actually act as a barrier to weeds. As a result, not only do rocks require any maintenance themselves, but they also reduce the amount of maintenance you need to dedicate elsewhere.
Use raised beds
Raised beds allow you to have more control over your plant life, as they prevent the foliage from spreading uncontrollably. In addition to this, they add some height to your garden space, which allows for a more interesting aesthetic. Moreover, raised beds may actually make you more inclined to garden, as you won’t be required to kneel down. After all, it’s this bending and kneeling that can be the most taxing thing about gardening and removing this need can make a world of difference.
Install attractive fencing
Your fencing is what surrounds your garden, so if your fencing looks good, your garden looks good. With an attractive fence, you won’t have to spend as much time beautifying your garden via extensive plant life that’s tricky to maintain. While fencing will require maintenance, such as repairs and painting, this isn’t likely to be more than a yearly occurrence. This differs from other types of garden maintenance that will need to be completed up to a weekly basis. Transforming your fencing doesn’t even have to be an expensive process; all you may require is a lick of paint to provide you with a pop of color.
Hire some help
If you really love your garden and don’t want to stop working on it but simply physically can no longer manage to look after it, then you might want to consider getting someone in to help. Even if it is just for a few hours to help with the heavier, more physically demanding work, leaving you with the lighter duties, it could make a significant difference to your continuing enjoyment of your garden.
Maintaining a garden is by no means an easy task, so it’s understandable that you want to reduce what’s required of your garden as much as possible. Employing the above adjustments might be just what you need to significantly cut back on how much time you spend working on your garden. Whether you have a green thumb or you simply want to keep your garden under control, we could all do with our lives being made that little bit easier. This is especially true during the winter months when the weather can be less than forgiving, and the garden is the last place you want to be.