How to Transform a Garden on a Budget
Gardening is a wonderful hobby that is suitable for any person on any budget. Unfortunately, many people assume they have to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to transform their gardens into something spectacular, but the truth is that there are many garden and backyard design ideas that you can implement inexpensively, and in some cases, without even spending a dime. These six tips, suggested by The Irrigation Shop, will help you get started.
- Reuse, repurpose, and recycle.
Planters, pots, and borders can add a touch of beauty to any garden, but if you have ever been to a garden shop, you know that even a small simple pot can break the bank. Skip the expensive items and look to things you already have around your house. You can make a border out of rocks, old wood, broken concrete, or even weave sticks together to make wattle fencing.
When it comes to pots and planters, anything that will hold dirt and is deep enough for roots to grow will suffice. You can even build your own out of old wood. Some things gardeners often use for planters include old watering cans, kitchen gear like kettles and pans, tin cans, old sinks and bathtubs, wagons, drawers, old toys — the possibilities are endless. Just be sure you make some drainage holes for the water.
- Don’t rely on professionals.
Some people feel as if they have to spend money on a professional when it comes to creating a garden design, but in reality, anyone can put together something attractive. Visit your local library to check out some gardening for beginners books to get started. You can also find great ideas on gardening magazines, or online on gardening blogs and on websites such as Pinterest. Create a map of your yard and start planning. It may require a little extra hard work, but it will be worth it in the end.
- Shop carefully for supplies.
Another major gardening expense can be the purchase of supplies like shovels, clippers, and other items needed to grow your plants. Shopping during the winter may mean lower prices. Also, just before spring, many major home improvement stores offer sale garden supplies. You can also look for secondhand items at garage sales and thrift shops.
Another way to save on supplies is to use what you have around the house. For example, instead of spending money on costly stakes, use sturdy sticks or bamboo shoots growing in your yard. Instead of spending money on expensive fertilizes, start your own compost pile. Items you can compost include egg shells, fruit and vegetable scraps, coffee grounds, newspapers, paper towels, and much more. If you have pine trees in your yard, make your own mulch out of the straw. For pest control, research the use of household items. Not only is it less expensive than purchasing, but it’s safer for your environment, too.
- Learn about water-wise gardening.
Keeping your garden watered through the warm summer months can be costly. Keep your bill low with water-wise gardening or by maximizing your water usage. Start by watering early in the day or late at night to avoid evaporation. Consider collecting and storing rainwater.
Irrigation can also help you save money on water. There are several hacks online for creating cheap home irrigation systems. Pick the one you like, put in a little effort, and instead of paying thousands for a professional system, you can usually spend less than a couple of hundred dollars on irrigation supplies. If you are looking for low maintenance garden ideas, a drip irrigation system is a must.
- Start with seeds.
When you visit your local nursery, it’s easy to be tempted by the array of fresh green plants and beautiful blooming flowers. However, buying plants that have already been started can cost a small fortune. You may pay $3 or $4 for a six plants when you can pay $2 for a packet of 100 seeds. It requires some patience, but starting with seeds is the least expensive way to grow a bountiful garden.
- Befriend other gardeners.
Those who garden typically love to share, so making like-minded friends could help save money. You can set up a plant and seed swap in your community that may benefit you, as well as your friends and neighbors. For example, maybe you have a plant growing abundantly in your yard. Your neighbor might be willing to exchange a few clippings for a handful of seeds from a plant growing in her yard.