In a house with a large garden, taking care of the landscaping can be a major chore. The question for many homeowners is how to keep a garden that looks nice without requiring lots of constant work. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to do this.
A major part of garden maintenance is the lawn. There are, however, varieties of grass that you can use that don’t require as much mowing, watering and weeding. Depending on the structure of your garden, you may also want to look for a variety that can tolerate shade well, in order to prevent having to take care of patchiness.
There are several varieties of artificial grass to consider as well. In recent years, artificial lawns have improved in quality, and you can find a more attractive look and feel than might have been assumed. On the other hand, using meadow plantings can create the feel of a natural lawn, with limited need for maintenance.
For flowerbeds, using mulch or stones instead of leaving the soil open can reduce the need for weeding as well as helping to keep in moisture to reduce the need for watering. As a side benefit, mulch tends to be good for the soil and can help improve appearance of the flowerbeds.
Plant choice is, of course, a key element of creating an easier to maintain garden. Using perennials and ground cover will reduce the area that you need to worry about on a regular basis. Shrubs and evergreens are also some plant types that will be easier to take care of on a regular basis and that won’t require replanting. Planting in groups will make the ongoing care simpler, particularly if you’re careful to combine those plants with similar needs. You can also stick to plant varieties with lower needs for water, known as xeriscaping, and high tolerance for either sun or shade. Using locally native plants will help to limit the need for care, since they will already be well adapted to conditions.
You may want to use stone or verandahs limit the amount of space that needs to be cared for. Concrete pavers can be used to create paths and to lead to, or border on, driveways or pools. There are a number of attractive colours and textures; the size and thickness you choose will depend on the space and how heavy the traffic on them will be. Decomposed granite can be a good choice for ground cover, only requiring some occasional raking. A deck made from a wood composite product will be even easier to keep than a stained timber deck.
Organisation can also help to limit the amount of work needed. A simpler, less formal design without sharp lines can be more interesting visually, and won’t need work to maintain those lines.
All of these are good ways to create a garden that you can enjoy without having to spend all of your time keeping it looking the way you want.
If you're interested in seeing some of Australia's best gardens, have a look at this featured house on Homely and its beautiful landscaping here