Landscaping your backyard isn't a simple task. Saving money on the project, however, can be. Saving money on landscaping doesn't always mean sacrificing on design, either. Using your materials wisely can result in a budget-friendly backyard escape. Patience is required, as saving money on your landscaping requires you to do much of the work and wait for good deals on materials.
Do It Yourself
Landscapers may charge upwards of 40 to 60 percent more for installed plants, according to the Landscape Design Advice website. The price for professionals may rise even more if you are hiring them to mulch, prepare your soil or do other tasks, as you will pay for the product and labor costs for the job. Providing your own labor is a huge money-saver.
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Keep it Minimal
A minimal landscaping design isn't always boring. Purchase small plants that are priced much lower than their larger, fuller counterparts. Although they take more time--potentially years--to reach their full size, the overall effect will be the same. Purchasing young shrubs and perennials this way can save you a lot of money up front. As the plants grow over time, finally reaching their full size, your landscaping will fill in with them.
Another minimal tact involves purchasing a few plants you enjoy and spacing them strategically throughout your landscaping area. For a bold statement, add a bright-colored point of interest, such as bright red perennials in a corner surrounded by a few green plants. Accent the look with a small fountain or other centerpiece.
Home improvement stores and garden centers have sales throughout the season. End-of-season sales, which may start as early as July in some areas, offer plants at huge discounts, sometimes more than 50 percent off the original price. Summer and fall plantings are both often successful, making end-of-season purchases worthwhile. While buying plants in late summer or fall reduces your enjoyment of the plant in the season they were purchased, you may be pleasantly surprised by early spring blooms the following year.
Transplant Existing Plants
If you have plants that aren't in your desired locations, transplant them. Transplanting can be difficult work, however, and knowing when and how is crucial for success. You can also divide some plants, such as hostas, and move the newly separated plants to different locations.
Nothing is cheaper than free, and some landscape materials may be just that. Many cities chip trees that were destroyed during storms, brush and other wood materials, then give the mulch away either inexpensively or free. Mulch is a popular material because it enhances the look of the landscaping. It also provides a weed barrier and decomposes over time, which enhances the soil. Information on free or cheap mulch may be located on the city's website or obtained by calling your city's information line.