Maintaining your home’s appearance is a must for the savvy homeowner, whether you’re selling your home or inviting friends and coworkers over, a well-manicured front lawn can convey a solid, positive first impression of both the property and its owner. It’s one of those unspoken rules, a universally understood principle that is part of keeping up a home. However, what is often understated and lesser-known is the impact a meticulously sculpted backyard can have on visitors to your humble abode.
With careful planning, frequent maintenance, and the occasional drastic renovation, visitors to your home may find that when they step outside into your backyard, they’ve walked through a portal to the magical, mystical land of their childhood dreams.
Your home is your paradise, your domain, your pocket in which everything is under your control, and you can sculpt your surroundings to your liking to represent you and effectively serve your needs.
While most homeowners either write off their backyards as unimportant (as it’s unlikely their local homeowners’ association is going to pop behind their fences like paparazzi, trying to get a picture of the neighborhood scandal) or maintain them on a surface level, the wise homeowner will see their backyard as the well of untapped potential that it is, a lump of modeling clay that they can craft into a masterpiece. All that’s needed is a fundamental understanding of the tools of the trade and how to use them to execute your vision of your dream backyard.
Fortunately, by following a few essential steps, anyone can remodel their backyard and make it into an eye-pleasing, stress-relieving paradise. Without further ado, here’s a brief guide to DIY landscaping.
Grow a Vibrant Garden
Learning how to grow and maintain a garden is no easy task, especially for those of us who are beginners or those who are without a green thumb. However, your first step should be to choose a good location to seed it; one that is likely to get plenty of sunlight, one that you can frequently water without expending too much effort, and one that is guaranteed to draw eyes when people visit your backyard.
You should also plan out what kinds of plants you want, paying attention to color scheme, as well as which varieties are likely to grow in different seasons. The worst thing imaginable would be to expend effort watering a crop for months, only to realize your plants are out of season and won’t live long once grown.
Once your garden is seeded, set up an irregular watering regimen, watering your plants deeply and thoroughly once a week. While the conventional wisdom suggests watering your plants shallowly daily, the problem with that is that your plants will become dependent on daily waterings, their roots not having the proper incentive to grow deep and strong. Irregular watering, on the other hand, makes your plants as hardy as they are beautiful.
Ornamentation and Construction of Structures
Depending on the area you have to work with, you might find that there’s little room for statues and structures in your backyard. That is absolutely fine, as the strategy then would be to rely on amplifying and highlighting your backyard’s natural beauty: trimming your bushes regularly, maintaining your garden, and perhaps even installing a bench or two to allow guests to sit in serenity.
Should you decide that you want to install lawn ornaments or structures like a gazebo, that will likely be a little more construction-oriented: if determined to avoid hiring a crew to complete the work for you, you can always complete the job yourself. For that, however, you should prepare to have some construction tools on hand, and you will likely need to rent a work truck to transport statues for installation throughout the entire duration of your project— For a major yard project, it could take several months and a work truck will be very beneficial.
When deciding what to add to supplement your backyard’s natural beauty, knowing how much space you have to work with is key, as well as your financial restraints. Remember, more is not always better; you will at minimum want to have areas for guests to sit and appreciate your backyard’s beauty, but anything beyond that is at your discretion.
Less Can Be More
If you’re reading this and thinking something along the lines of “oh goodness, I hope I don’t have to do all of that work just to make my backyard look beautiful” … Good news: you don’t. Things like statues and structures are the domain of the wealthy (and depending on their taste, the tacky), and aren’t necessary additions to every backyard paradise. Trust your gut, and remember, the backyard should be the star, and your job is to highlight what it already has.