A stroll around the block may have you strategizing how to boost your yard’s appearance. You may find yourself inspired by the neighbors’ vibrant gardens, manicured lawns and decorative elements, trying to find ways to level up your landscaping game without breaking the bank.
Enhancing your home’s curb appeal is important regardless of whether you plan to stay or are getting ready to sell. The National Association of Realtors reports that high curb appeal increases market value by 7% more than similar homes with neglected yards.
However, do-it-yourself landscaping requires you to consider the cost, climate, design preferences, your yard’s purpose and the skills you can bring to the task. Thankfully, there are several DIY landscaping tips for homeowners on a budget.
6 Simple Tips for DIY Landscaping
Homeowners look for two things when it comes to DIY landscaping: affordability and simplicity. If you’re going to take on your home’s curb appeal yourself, you might want to try these six easy, budget-friendly tips.
1. Layer Garden Beds
Composing the perfect garden design can be daunting, especially if your garden beds are currently bare. Yet, creating a stunning garden is simple enough when measuring plant height and width.
The general rule for layering your garden beds is to keep the shorter plants in the front and increase the height of the plants towards the back. That way, you can see everything.
Of course, island beds are a bit different. Instead, you’ll want to position the tallest plants in the middle and work outwards with shorter to shortest plants.
Just remember to research each plant before placing them in your garden beds, as their mature measurements may vary.
2. Create Year-Round Interest
Spring and summer are ideal for planting fresh flowers and maintaining an exquisitely green lawn. However, make sure to add year-round interest to your DIY landscaping goals with all-season trees and shrubbery, too.
Look for trees and bushes that flower during warmer months, deliver stunning foliage in the fall and maintain excellent shape in the winter. For example, cranberry viburnum and Japanese maples are popular all-season trees homeowners can incorporate into their landscape designs.
Depending on the size of the tree, you may want to consider renting an auger for creating deep holes effortlessly in even the most compacted soil.
3. Add Hardscaping
Flowers and plants may come to mind first when homeowners reconfigure their curb appeal, but hardscapes also do plenty to enhance the premises.
Walkways and fences make a statement and help frame the property — think short, white picket fences that add a cottage aesthetic or winding gravel paths that lead you to the front porch or backyard.
You may even hardscape a border to contain your garden beds and prevent soil and mulch erosion. Flagstone — limestone, shale and sandstone — adds character and texture to your garden. Even better, homeowners usually only spend about $300 on stone and sand for a 10-foot-long by 12-inch-high flagstone border.
4. Install a Water Feature
A water feature, such as a pond or fountain, is actually an easy DIY landscaping project you can install without a professional. They also serve as a beautiful focal point, creating a new habitat for birds and other small wildlife.
You might decide to install a small garden pond with a shell liner or flexible liner. You’ll also need pumps, filters and tubing. When you’ve finished setting up your pond, place flagstone around the perimeter and add pebbles, rocks and gravel to give it a natural look.
Water lilies and aquatic plants will complete the water feature design and help blend it in with the rest of the grounds. After you’ve learned to install a small pond, you may even attempt to add a waterfall element.
5. Add Solar Lighting
You might agree that lighting can make a huge difference in your evening curb appeal. Solar lighting is relatively inexpensive and can be used to showcase unique features or line walkways.
Shine a spotlight on a tree and improve your walkway’s safety by bordering lights from the driveway to the front door.
Light features come in a wide range of colors, shapes and patterns. Decorative lighting could include pattern-cut orbs or lanterns that illuminate a mesmerizing design. You can even buy solar lights in the form of garden critters or flowers for something more playful.
6. Opt for Low-Maintenance
Whether you follow all or some of the above DIY landscaping ideas, you have to be prepared to care for your property in the long run. Some homeowners don’t want the hassle of getting dirty each week to keep their yards in perfect shape — and that’s fine.
Plants that are native to your region will require little irrigation or fertilizers, while artificial turf may be an option for those with limited time to mow their lawns.
Just be sensible about the time you’re willing to spend on yard work and make a plan for incorporating low-maintenance plants and garden features only.
Affordable DIY Landscaping for Perfect Curb Appeal
Enhancing your curb appeal doesn’t have to be a costly undertaking. There are several DIY landscaping ideas for you to turn a neglected property into an oasis. Soon enough, the neighbors will be looking to your yard for inspiration, too.