Rental Market Information Center

How to Create a Low Maintenance Yard that Looks Great!

A home’s yard is the first impression when looking at a house. What is your yard saying about the property? Is it screaming high maintenance or no maintenance at all? Does it look overgrown and unattractive or well trimmed and pleasing? It doesn’t matter if it is the tenant or the landlord, someone has to maintain the yard of a rental property. In this article, we are going to discuss how to create a low maintenance yard that looks great.

Keep it Simple

Daily life is overwhelming. Hardly does anyone have extra time just laying around – especially when it comes to lawn maintenance. So, the first step in creating a low maintenance yard is to keep the landscaping simple. If you want to plant flowers, then limit it to one small manageable area that will add to the street side view. If possible, try to limit the amount of grass that needs to be cut. Here are some ideas on how to do that.

Plant Low Maintenance Shrubs and Bushes

Shrubs and bushes will keep your lawn looking great with little to no maintenance. Most bushes and shrubs will have some sort of flower, which will add a pop of color throughout the year. The best spot for shrubs and bushes to create a low maintenance yard is to put them along the house. You can create a shrub and bush garden that extends 6 to 8 feet from the foundation. This is 6 to 8 feet of less grass you have to mow.  Fine Gardening magazine has a nice article on “The Only Shrubs You Need to Grow” if you want some ideas on what to plant.

Maximize Mulch and Minimize Yard Maintenance

One key component to creating a low maintenance yard is to take measures to reduce weeds. Mulch is a great way to do this. Mulch is a great investment because as it breaks down it will fertilize the plants while preventing weeds. It is inexpensive and only needs to be replaced in the spring. If you want to upgrade your mulch, then invest in cocoa mulch. Not only does it look great and is not as chucky as traditional mulch, but every time you stir it up you get that lovely chocolate aroma.

If you don’t want the spring fuss of buying several bags of mulch, another alternative is to invest in crushed stone. It is a one-time expense that looks great and lasts forever. It is also a great edger along sidewalks and driveways. It comes in a variety of colors that can complement a home. Another option is to place some large landscaping rocks in your shrub bed. It breaks up the flow and adds character.

Plant Clover instead of Grass for a Low Maintenance Yard

Micro clover is an attractive alternative to grass seed. In fact, it used to be included in a typical bag of lawn seed. It is drought-tolerant, insect-resistant, and needs less mowing. It remains uniformly green even in spite of Fido’s urge to pee everwhere and kill the grass. Clover also thrives in poor soils. If your yard has bald spots or the grass just won’t take, throw some clover seeds on it. Perhaps the best benefit is that the cost is equal or less than grass seed. It is a win-win situation for everyone. If you want more information, check out Clover Lawn.

Create an Outdoor Living Space

Outdoor spaces expanding the living area of a home and lends itself very well to creating a low maintenance yard.  A cement pad, stone patio, or deck is one less area that needs mowing or weeding. It adds appeal to rentals and value to the home.

What if the Yard is Too Low Maintenance?

If you are a tenant and you are living in a rental with a sterile boring yard that has no personality what-so-ever, don’t despair. In our next article we will give you some low-cost options on how to make your rental yard look great! Check back next week.

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