Whether you’re buying, selling, or just staying put, the exterior landscaping of your home sends a message. Even if you’re the most meticulous person in the world, a patchy yard filled with weeds gives off a sloppy first impression. Fortunately, with a little effort and some research, your landscaping can show all passersby (and potential buyers) the true character of your home. Keep reading for our tips to update your landscaping without breaking the bank!
The start to any beautiful landscape is the foundation: The lawn itself. If you are starting from scratch, here are a few tips for growing lush grass.
- Sow grass seed - This is best done in both the fall and spring, but if you’re just now spreading out grass seed you can still have a nice lawn in a few months! Be sure to consistently water any areas you have seeded (this is where a few inexpensive sprinklers can save you plenty of time!). If it’s within your budget. apply fertilizer. This provides your grass seed with extra oomph to come in green and luscious.
- Remove weeds - If you have a few stray dandelions here and there, you can go ahead and weed your lawn by pulling out the roots and disposing of them in a compost pile (completely free, minus your efforts). If your weed problem is a bit more significant, you may need to invest in a handheld spray pump. These can usually be found at your local lawn and garden centre for a reasonable price, and with proper care will last you many years! Talk to an expert about what type of weeds you have and the best products to use to get rid of them.
- Clean up dead-ends - Whether it is leaves from the previous fall or grass clippings from your last mow, be proactive about raking your lawn. When excess plant waste is left in the yard, it can prevent new, healthy grass from growing because it blocks sunlight and water.
Greenery and Florals
If your lawn is in good shape, the next way to add appeal to your landscaping is by planting a few low-cost and low-maintenance florals. Check out a few of these options below, do some research on the visuals, and get started planting!
- Hostas - One of the most popular (and hardy) plants for landscaping are hostas. They grow back every year, even after being mowed off in the fall, and they are easy to transplant. This means you probably have a friend or neighbour who is ready to thin out their collection and pass them on for free!
- Juniper - Groundcover juniper is perfect if you have a dead space that you’re wanting to cover up. It grows about 12” tall and can spread to 7’ wide. This plant has a bluish-green tint and works best in full sun.
- Shrubs - Shrubs may be one of the lowest-maintenance landscaping options of all. Once established, they require very little care other than the occasional trim to your liking. Although the price tag may seem a bit steeper at first, shrubs last much longer and maintain your landscaping foundation year after year. This makes them a very inexpensive investment to your lawn. You can choose to incorporate flowering, broad-leaf evergreens, or evergreens with needles. Do a bit of digging to choose the best plant for your particular landscape vision.
Looking to add some diversity to your yard? Landscaping shapes up your plants as well as frames your home. Here are some simple and cost-effective tips for sprucing up your landscaping.
- Edging - If you have an established flowerbed or garden space, make a physical boundary between this space and the rest of your lawn. Not only does this help you know where NOT to mow (you don’t want to ruin all your gardening efforts!), but it gives the eye a focal point to draw toward. You can edge your spaces by investing in inexpensive stone pavers and making a nice, neat border or retaining wall. However, a free option is to gather up medium size rocks yourself and lay them out! Check with people you know to see if anyone has a “rock” problem - particularly any crop farmers! They would be more than happy to let you go rock-picking in their fields.
- Mulch - A bag or two of mulch goes a long way in improving the landscape aesthetic. Not only do the nutrients help plants grow, but the variety of colours to choose from allows your plants to really pop against the base. Mulch is very cost-efficient, especially if you are just working with a few small plants or trees.
Is your landscaping already established the way you want, but you’re looking for something extra? It may be a few pieces of decor that you’re missing. Here are a few low-cost options to add to your lawn.
First, check your donation piles and those cupboards that haven’t been opened for a while. You can make nearly anything work in a landscape with a bit of creativity. A rusty oil can, an old bowling ball, a popped bicycle tire...if you’ve got something waterproof to throw away, you can use it in your landscaping! The perfect go-to for how to incorporate your repurposed items is Pinterest. Create your own board of ideas and get to work!
For things you know you need and have to spend money on, make them worth the investment. If you’re in need of a new garden hose storage container, choose one that is also appealing to the eye. The garden shed in the backyard can be repainted for relatively cheap. Spending a little bit extra on already-needed projects can go far in improving your home’s curb appeal.
Looks aren’t everything. However, creating a space you enjoy being in brings happiness to the homeowner (or potential buyer!). If you are ready to sell your home, we’re ready to walk you through the steps to get the most out of your property. Reach out to us at Sweetly Real Estate. We are experts and understanding the markets and working with both buyers and sellers to ensure a happy transaction on both ends. Fill out our contact form and we will be in touch soon!