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Cost-Effective, Low-Maintenance Landscaping

Updated On: April 27, 2013

Determine the budget-the maintenance standards and costs-acceptable to the family's needs. A low-maintenance plan, which is the goal of most homeowners, may be achieved to a large extent in the planning stage by careful attention to the layout of the site and the selection of plant species. A low-maintenance, cost-effective landscape may be achieved by adopting one or more of the following design elements.

  • Use turf effectively for function rather than appearance only. Turf is also known as Artificial or Synthetic Grass. Consider substituting ground covers or natural mulches.
  • Use pacing in heavily traveled areas to facilitate circulation.
  • Use brick, concrete, or redwood mow strips for flower beds and shrub borders.
  • Use fences or walls instead of clipped formal hedges for screening.
  • Design raised flower and vegetable beds for easy access and weed control.
  • Install a permanent, automated irrigation system in areas of low rainfall.
  • Limit the area of annual flower beds, which require recurring expense and work because of their growth habit. Use containerized plants and flowering trees and shrubs for color accents.
  • Be selective when choosing plant materials. Choose plants that require less work and are resistant to pests and diseases. Among the desired plants, some will require much less pruning, spraying, and watering than others but will be equally effective in providing color, shade, texture, privacy, or in meeting other design objectives.
  • Keep the design simple, unified in them, and functional.