These landscaping ideas will give you an envy-worthy yard
In the summertime, there's no better place to be than your backyard. It's where you swim in your pool, sit on your deck, grill meals, and blow bubbles with your kids. During the hot summer months, it's basically a second home, and like your home, it develops that look and feel of being lived in. That's all well and fine until you come up with the grand idea to host an outdoor party. Whether it's a family birthday party or your turn to host the next book club gathering, that same realization comes across your face: my yard needs help.
First thing you need to know right off the bat is not to panic. Landscaping is something you can fix. Even if you're not a green thumb or have an eye for design, here are eight quick, simple, and most of all cost-effective ways to give your landscaping that professional look. So pull out that lawn mower, and get your yard gorgeous!
- Give everything a good clean: By simply cleaning what you have; your walkways, your deck, your children's playground equipment, and your swimming pool (if you have one), your yard will look brand new. A professional landscape doesn't always require buying new things. Sometimes, it's best to work with what you have.
- Lights, lights, and more lights: Hosting an outdoor party at night means making sure you have a lot of light around to keep people safe. Thankfully, there are many outdoor lighting options at your disposal that won't only take care of the problem, but make your yard look amazing in the process. Light up some tiki torches and add an island feel to your yard (they help with mosquitoes, too). String Christmas lights around your fence, deck, pool, and seating areas. Stick tea lights in mason jars. Before long, your landscaping will look as if you've had a crew put everything together, all because of lights.
- Create a focal point in your yard: Focusing your landscaping efforts on one section of your yard, such as your swimming pool, your firepit, or your favorite tree keeps people's eyes from wandering. If you have a part of your yard that you don't like people focusing on, doing something like this is your best bet. Plus, the focal point acts as a kind of anchor that brings your landscaping together.
- Tend your garden and landscape: This is an obvious step whether or not you have an outdoor event coming up, but be sure to pull weeds, fertilize your lawn, mow and edge your grass, rake any stubborn leaves hanging around, and lay down mulch in your garden. Mulch not only keeps weeds from growing, but also protects the roots of your plants. The color will also give your garden a nice aesthetic and make everything planted in it stand out.
- Add new plants: Planting some new flowers will add pops of vibrant color to your yard and garden. Or, try buying some potted plants and create a border all along the front and back of your house. If you're not sure where to start, a good thing to plant are evergreens, such as hedges and boxwood shrubs. They're easy to tend to, look lush and gorgeous, and give your landscape that professional look you're aiming for.
- Use rocks as an accent: Rocks are cheap to buy and they make a great accent for things in your yard. For instance, you can use rocks to make a border around your garden, flowerbed, firepit, or favorite tree. They also work in a pinch for a DIY retainer wall.
- Add new seating: Your landscape will look more inviting if you create a new seating area for people to gather around. Buy an old bench or a set of chairs from a flea market, give them a paint job and some sprucing up, and see how good they'll look in your yard. Once again, it's something that will provide a focal point for people to look at, and even if you're not having a party, the extra seating is a great idea for your backyard.
- Make new walkways: Using rocks, stone, wood chips or concrete, you can create small walkways leading to various places. For example, you can make a walkway to your garage, through your garden, to your driveway, or in and out of your backyard. These areas may just seem to be fodder for heavy foot traffic, but making the walkways stand out give your landscape that extra touch of beauty.
Whether or not you have an outdoor event coming up, making your landscape look gorgeous and professional is something that should be on your priority list. Your yard is your second home in the summer, so give it the love and care it deserves.