Designing A Garden That Takes Care of Itself

Everyone wants a beautiful garden bursting with lush greenery and colorful flowers. To many people, this remains a dream since they feel they don’t have the time to put into achieving the perfect garden. A stunning garden that requires almost no care is well within reach if you make smart choices. These tips will help you create a garden that practically takes care of itself.

Choose Native Plants

The way most homeowners choose the plants they put in their garden is by selecting whichever flowers are most beautiful. While this may get you a lovely landscape, you will soon be devoting all your time to its upkeep. Native plants have bred over time to perfectly function in local soil and climate conditions with no care. Choosing flowers, shrubs and trees that are from your area will let you have a garden that knows exactly how to thrive where it is planted.

Plant Drought Resistant Varieties

One of the biggest garden chores is daily watering. Not only is it inconvenient to get up early to give your plants a drink, it also is not good for water conservation. Choosing plants that are drought resistant enables you to skip daily waterings. These plants will generally survive on what falls out of the sky unless you go several weeks with no rain.

Plant Dense Foliage

If spending your weekends pulling weeds out of your flower beds does not sound like your idea of a good time, consider planting your flowers as close together as possible. Just like any plant, weeds need sunlight to survive. When the leaves of your plants form a canopy that the sun’s rays are unable to penetrate, you give weeds less of a chance to invade your garden.

Mulch Your Beds

Another weed busting garden feature is good old fashioned mulch. There is a reason why gardeners have been using this technique for thousands of years. Mulch is a thick covering of organic or inorganic material that keeps weeds from growing and moisture in the ground. Many people use wood chips, rocks or straw as mulch in their landscape. The key is to pile the material high enough in your beds to smother any unwanted plants that may try to poke their leaves through the soil.

Start a Compost Bin

For part time gardeners, proper fertilizer amounts can seem like an art, a science and magic rolled all into one. If you use chemical fertilizers to feed your garden, it can be difficult to portion out the correct amounts for all your different plants. For the lazy gardener there is a simple, inexpensive solution. Compost is a great fertilizer that works on every plant. All you have to do is put a layer of compost in all your garden beds, and your plants will be fed for several months. It gives plants a gentle feeding that doesn’t cause stress that makes them susceptible to pests and diseases. You can make your own compost by tossing lawn clippings, leaves, weeds and vegetable scraps in a pile. Over a few months this mixture breaks down into a rich, dark soil-like material that provides the simplest of plant foods.

Built In Drip Irrigation

Even though your garden is full of native and drought resistant plants, there may still be times you need to water. If there has not been rain for a few weeks, your plants will need hydration. You can eliminate the need to trudge through your parched garden with a hose by installing a drip irrigation system in your beds before you even plant the first flower. This is a hose with tiny holes at regular intervals that snakes through your landscape. You can simply turn on the water and go back to whatever you were doing. You can even put your irrigation system on a timer so you don’t have to remember to turn it off.

No garden is completely self sufficient, but planning your outdoor space using these tips will get you as close as possible. You will spend more time relaxing in your gorgeous landscape than you will put into the care of it.