Landscaping your outdoor areas is often all about putting the remaining finishing touches to your property. However, after building or renovating, most of us are scraping the barrel when it comes to budgeting for this aspect of our home. Never fear, penny pinching need not mean compromising on quality landscaping materials or involve you cutting corners. Read on for some wallet-friendly inspiration…
1. Call in the Pros
Ok, this may not be the most obvious tip to start off with, but hear me out. DIY is all well and good but some tasks are best left to the professionals. Here I am talking about the creative flair, design and equipment that a professional landscape gardener
or landscape architect
brings to the table. They actually may end up helping you save by avoiding costly mistakes and sourcing materials at wholesale rates. And no matter how competent you are the end result is never going to look as good as a professionals.
2. Green Fingers
Plants can be expensive, especially more mature specimens that have been nurtured for months and in some cases years. Get around this by getting your hands dirty and growing your own from seed. Alternatively buy smaller seedlings or immature plants from nurseries
– these are not only cheaper you will have the satisfaction of watching them flourish, bloom and fruit. Online nurseries also mean you don’t even have to get off the couch - initially anyhow. Choose from all manner of exotic species and unique varieties of heirloom vegetable seedlings from the comfort of your own home.
3. Planning & Preparation
Careful planning can go a long way to making sure you maximise your landscaping budget. Besides the obvious: setting a budget and sticking to it, take time to measure your plot and put down on paper what your landscaping vision entails. Also bear in mind that there are always alternatives to a product or materials. So instead of buying turf
you could as easily sow it from seed or substitute gravel for natural stone – the possibilities are limited by your imagination.
Save time and money by sourcing your landscaping materials from the growing ranks of salvage yards that specialise in recycled building materials
. Nearly new materials that could fit the bill for your outdoor landscape project include recycled timber and decking
, second hand bricks, pavers
, scrap steel and period architectural fittings. These items could all add character and personality to your outdoor areas while being ever so budget friendly.
5. Rejuvenate with Paint
is a cost effective way of reviving all manner of items from your tired outdoor furniture, plant pots and even scruffy concrete pavers. Paint manufacturers have tapped into this demand with a range of speciality products suitable for applications that include craft, decorative, outdoor, metalwork and even concrete pavers. In the same vein your timber decking may only need a clean and reseal
to remedy the fading that exposure to the elements typically results in.
6. Working Bee
A large part of any landscaping job involves lugging, digging and hammering – in short, the blood sweat and tears of hard labour! Here a great way of saving is to invite friends and neighbours over for a working bee. Do a quick survey and put them to work on jobs suited to their skills. If you are really lucky there may well be a landscape designer or gardener amongst them. Just remember you need to incentivise them in some way – a jug of homemade lemonade or barbie at the end of the day usually does the trick.