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Top Tips For Lazy Gardeners

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On the JJ Barnes Blog, I check top tips for lazy gardeners as Jonathan Creber, Commercial Director of Modern Garden Rooms shares his top eight garden hacks for low effort, high results garden care!

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I’ve shared my resolution to get control of the clutter and mayhem inside my house, but what about outside? My garden is more of a playground for my children than an elegant space for relaxing in the sun, but I would like to try and make it look at least a little bit prettier, but my idea of horticultural bliss involves more lounging in a hammock than lugging mulch.

To help me out, Jonathan Creber, Commercial Director of Modern Garden Rooms has sent over his top tips for the easiest ways to maintain a stunning garden with minimal effort. So grab your coffee (or beer, no judgment), settle in, and get ready to learn the secrets of a low-maintenance, high-reward garden that’s as beautiful as it is effortless.

Top Tips For Lazy Gardeners

1. Tidy up garden borders

A freshly mowed lawn is a garden’s crown, but achieving the perfect finish is about mastering the details. Traditional mowers do a great job of the lawn, but often, the grass edges are left behind, which can leave your garden looking messy. Think of an untrimmed lawn like a shaggy haircut. Sure, it’s green and alive, but it lacks definition. Trimming the edges creates clean lines, like a crisp frame around your living canvas. Suddenly, your flowerbeds pop, your patio feels more inviting, and the entire space gains a sense of purpose. It’s like putting on makeup for your lawn – subtle, but impactful.

While gardening can be exhausting, trimming the edges is a low-key workout with high-impact results. A quick once-over with a trimmer or even a trusty pair of shears goes a long way. Plus, unlike mowing the whole lawn, it’s easily tackled in bite-sized chunks, perfect for procrastinators and busy bees alike. Think of it as mini-gardening therapy, not a marathon sprint.

For a versatile solution, you can pick up a handheld hedge trimmer, which you can pick up for just £20 on Amazon. Not only can they be used to keep your hedges neat, but they can quickly tackle the grass at the borders that mowers often miss.

2. Save money by planting perennials

Perennials are a great choice for those looking to add a splash of colour to their garden while keeping costs low, since they regrow every spring.

Lavender

This aromatic plant is a favourite for many garden enthusiasts. You can find lavender plants online, or opt for a pack of lavender seeds for an even cheaper option. When you consider that a lavender plant can last between 10 to 15 years, the cost per year is around 27p if you buy a plant or 13p if you grow them from seeds.

Unlike some high-maintenance divas, lavender thrives on neglect. It’s drought-tolerant, sun-loving, and requires minimal pruning. Simply plant it in well-draining soil and let it blossom (literally and figuratively). It’s the perfect plant for busy bees who want maximum beauty with minimal effort.

Buzzing with life, lavender’s nectar-rich flowers attract bees, butterflies, and other pollinators, creating a vibrant ecosystem in your backyard. Not only does this look and sound delightful, but it also benefits your other plants by ensuring proper pollination. It’s nature’s win-win scenario! And say goodbye to unwanted guests! Lavender’s scent acts as a natural deterrent for mosquitoes, flies, and even some rodents. You can create fragrant borders to protect your outdoor seating areas or plant lavender near vegetable patches to keep pests at bay. It’s like having a built-in bug zapper, without the harsh chemicals.

Geraniums 

You can introduce these vibrant plants to your garden for around £2 a plant from stores like Homebase. While they provide consistent bursts of colour and charm for 2-3 years, they can become a bit woody and yield sparse blossoms as they age. Keeping geraniums for at least five years costs around 40p per plant per year.

Unlike some prima donna plants, geraniums are low-maintenance charmers. They thrive in full sun, tolerate heat and drought, and rarely succumb to pests or diseases. Their vibrant blooms keep coming all season long, requiring minimal deadheading to maintain their show-stopping performance. Think of them as the effortlessly chic actresses of the garden, always looking their best with minimal fuss.

These cheerful blooms aren’t just admired by humans; they’re a magnet for butterflies and other pollinators. Watching these delicate creatures flitting from flower to flower adds a touch of magic to any garden. Think of geraniums as nature’s confetti, attracting a vibrant cast of characters to your green space.

Echinacea

Known for their daisy-like blooms, a 6-pack of young Echinacea plants can be acquired from garden centres for less than £5. Echinacea has a remarkable lifespan of up to 40 years in natural settings, which means these plants can cost as little as 2p per year if well cared for. Its advisable to divide Echinacea every four years in garden settings to ensure that they flourish.

Don’t be fooled by their delicate appearance. Echinacea is a survivor, thriving in full sun, tolerating drought, and shrugging off pests and diseases with ease. They’re the low-maintenance royalty of the garden, requiring minimal fuss to keep them looking their best. Think of them as the warriors of the plant world, armed with beauty and resilience in equal measure.

Forget fleeting blooms that fade in a blink. Echinacea offers a months-long parade of vibrant color, from fiery reds and sunny yellows to dusky pinks and cool lavender. Imagine a garden ablaze with these spiky stars, their petals catching the sunlight like stained glass windows. They’ll keep the show going from midsummer to early fall, ensuring your garden remains a vibrant oasis long after other flowers have bowed out.

3. Embrace vertical gardens

Consider adding hanging planters, vertical pallet gardens, or climbing vines in your smaller outdoor areas.

Hanging baskets

These can become mini gardens for various herbs, such as basil, rosemary, mint. Having them hanging by your window or on your balcony means fresh flavours are just an arm’s length away when cooking.

Hanging baskets aren’t just feasts for the eyes; they’re magnets for feathery friends like hummingbirds and butterflies. Picture these vibrant creatures flitting from blossom to blossom, adding a touch of magic to your outdoor space. Imagine watching bees buzzing cheerfully around a basket of lavender, their wings humming a gentle, pollen-laden melody. Hanging baskets become tiny ecosystems, buzzing with life and contributing to the natural world.

Don’t be fooled by their vibrant show. Hanging baskets can be surprisingly low-maintenance. Choose the right plants for your climate and watering needs, and you’ll enjoy months of beauty with minimal fuss. Imagine enjoying your morning coffee on a sun-drenched patio, surrounded by colorful blooms that require watering every other day. Hanging baskets offer effortless beauty without the gardening sweat.

Vertical planters

For those with limited space, vertical gardens offer a nutritious solution. Use vertical planters for fruit like strawberries or herbs, as these usually grow happily in smaller areas. Vertical planters are also great for growing fruits and vegetables if you only have a balcony.

Vertical planters aren’t just space-saving wonders; they’re sensory feasts. Imagine brushing past a living wall of lavender, its aromatic mist swirling around you like a calming spell. Picture a miniature jungle bursting with vibrant blooms, their colors dancing in the sunlight. Vertical planters bring the outdoors in, inviting you to touch, smell, and taste the verdant world. They’re miniature ecosystems, buzzing with life and reminding us of nature’s endless bounty, even in the heart of the urban jungle.

Climbing vines

For vibrant decor, consider climbing vines such as wisteria, available at DIY stores for less than £15, jasmine around £13, and honeysuckle for around £7. These climbers add beauty and an infusion of colour in smaller spaces while keeping things tidy.

Vines do the heavy lifting for you, literally! They scramble, climb, and weave their leafy tapestry without demanding endless attention. Simply provide garden trellis for sturdy support, a bit of water, and maybe a sunny patch, and watch them paint your walls with verdant hues. Imagine morning glories unfurling their vibrant trumpets towards the sun, or fragrant honeysuckle weaving a perfumed curtain across your porch. Vines offer beauty that requires minimal input.

Unlike finicky annuals, many vines are fast-growing champions, transforming bare walls into leafy havens in a remarkably short time. Clematis paints its vibrant stars within weeks, morning glories greet you with their colorful faces each dawn, and wisteria weaves its fragrant purple veil within a season.

4. Add some potted plants

Potted plants are the answer for those looking to introduce versatility and ease into their garden. They not only allow gardeners to play around with arrangements, but they also simplify tasks like weeding.

The ability to move these pots means plants can always get optimal sunlight, and with less soil surface, there’s a reduced chance of weeds. This mobile feature also lets you revamp the look of your garden whenever the mood strikes.

Potted plants demand minimal space and even less effort. Simply choose your green companions, find a sunny spot (or a shady haven, depending on their preference), and watch them thrive. Potted plants offer beauty that requires minimal input.

5. Create your own mulch

Mulch, a gardener’s secret weapon, is a material spread atop the soil. It is used to conserve moisture, improve soil health, and combat weed growth. Creating your own mulch is easier and cheaper than you think.

Mulches are made from many things, such as straw, wood chips, plastic and even rubber, but an eco-friendly, cost-effective tip is to use banana peels. Place the banana peels on the soil and cover them with an organic mulch, such as compost or wood chips. As they decompose, they enrich the soil, boosting plant health and reducing watering frequency.

Start a simple kitchen compost bin and toss in vegetable peels, egg shells, and coffee ground. Nature’s decomposers will work their magic, turning your scraps into dark, crumbly gold in a few months. Spread it around your plants for weed suppression, moisture retention, and a delicious dose of nutrients.

6. Plant hardy shrubs

Shrubs like boxwood or holly are like the reliable friends of the gardening world. These tough-as-nails beauties weather storms, tolerate neglect, and bloom with minimal fuss. Their robust nature means less time spent on maintenance, and their evergreen presence ensures the garden looks lush year-round.

Unlike finicky annuals, hardy shrubs are champions of slow and steady growth, transforming bare corners into verdant havens within a season. Lilacs paint their fragrant show within a few years, hydrangeas unfurl their dramatic globes of color by summer’s end, and viburnums offer dazzling berries for feathered friends long into autumn. Imagine your patio evolving from sterile concrete to a leafy sanctuary, all thanks to the effortless magic of a well-chosen shrub.

7. Opt for gravel paths

Gravel paths are not just about the rustic charm they bring to gardens. They offer a blend of aesthetics and practicality. Beyond visual allure, gravel stands out for its affordability and functionality.

Gravel paths require minimal prep. Simply mark your path, lay a weed-suppressing membrane, and spread your chosen pebbles. No backbreaking digging, no delicate edging, just pure, unadulterated ease. Imagine winding paths of sun-warmed gravel meandering through your garden, inviting exploration without demanding endless toil.

Rain or shine, gravel paths stand strong. Forget mud-caked shoes and soggy landscapes. Gravel drains like a dream, channeling water away from your precious plants and leaving you with firm footing all year round. Imagine strolling through your garden after a summer shower, your feet crunching on dry pebbles, while nearby flowerbeds bask in the post-rain sun. Gravel paths conquer the elements, ensuring your garden remains accessible and beautiful in any weather.

8. Illuminate your garden with solar lights

Solar-powered stake lights cast a gentle glow, and are ideal for outlining paths or flower beds. For a sprinkle of charm, opt for solar-powered string lights.

Solar lights require minimal effort. Simply stick them in the ground, hang them on branches, or string them along fences, and voilà, instant ambiance! No electrician needed, no tangled wires to trip over, just pure, unadulterated ease. Imagine pathways illuminated by dancing fireflies, flowerbeds glowing with soft spotlights, and trees adorned with twinkling fairy lights. Solar lights offer beauty that requires minimal input, perfect for gardeners who prefer to relax, not wrestle with cords.

Solar lights are nature’s answer to lazy gardeners’ prayers. They charge themselves, require no batteries, and demand minimal upkeep. Picture yourself sipping cocktails on a starlit patio, surrounded by lights that practically maintain themselves. Solar lights offer effortless ambiance without the constant chore of replacing batteries or tangled wires, perfect for those who appreciate a relaxed approach to garden decor.

Conclusion

By leveraging these uncomplicated tricks and strategies, you can effortlessly transform your outdoor space into a picturesque haven that remains easy to care for. After all, a stunning garden shouldn’t require endless hours of hard work when simple hacks can make all the difference.

About Modern Garden Rooms

Specialising in bespoke garden rooms, Modern Garden Rooms provides a unique and efficient alternative to traditional home extensions, designed to cater to diverse needs, from workspaces to relaxation zones, all customised to fit individual homeowner needs.

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