Maintaining a lovely outdoor space or landscape can be rewarding and delightful, but the costs can quickly break the budget. Is there a happy medium between creating the outdoor space of your dreams and going into hawk over it?
Yes, of course! You can create a beautiful landscape and outdoor living space and save money while you do it! It’s all about timing, recycling and conserving.
Outdoor items, such as furniture, grills, pool supplies and décor can all be purchased at a fraction of the retail price at the end of the season.
When everyone else is focused on the upcoming fall and winter seasons, you can find superb bargains at your local home and garden center.
Use the summer season as an opportunity to survey what you would like or need to purchase. Then, make a list and plan your attack. The best time to purchase outdoor furniture and supplies is Labor Day weekend and throughout much of September. Wait any longer and you will likely have little to choose from.
Next, if you plan on any outdoor home improvement projects, the colder months are the best season to hire contractors. This is because very few people are thinking about decks and patios when the snow is flying! This means that contractors are looking for work and are likely to do the work for less. On the other hand, if you call a contractor in May and expect a deal on your backyard deck, think again.
Recycling your lawn and garden waste is the first step in saving money. Why? Because you can easily set up a composting pile to create rich compost for your garden instead of purchasing costly fertilizers. In addition, you will be doing your part in caring for the environment.
Many construction sites will offer free fill for your yard and free or low-cost building materials. Need to build a retaining wall? Ask a construction foreman for his scrap bricks or cinder blocks. This is a great way to save money and reduce the amount of construction waste from entering our already-crammed landfills.
Conserving is perhaps one of the best things you can do to reduce your landscaping and gardening costs.
The first step to conserving is to plant low-water, low-maintenance gardens. These types of gardens, often called xeriscapes, include many, different species of plants which eliminate the need to use supplemental irrigation, fertilizers or herbicides.
You can also choose native plants which require much less fertilizer, water and maintenance as their exotic counterparts.
Capture rainwater for watering your plants by situating a large water barrel at the end of your downspouts. The rainwater is collected and can be used to water your garden, all without inflating your water bill!
Consider native plants and tall grasses to fill in your landscape and eliminate the amount of turfgrass around your home. This will reduce the amount of water and fertilizers needed for your grass. Choosing the right type of grass that thrives in your particular climate will also reduce the need for supplemental irrigation and fertilization.