Are you looking for cheap garden ideas? Great-looking gardens do not always need to be expensive. With a limited budget, you can achieve beautiful and cozy open spaces.
If you are completely redoing your garden, hard landscaping will be the most expensive, and often unavoidable part. However, there are many ways you can reduce the costs at every stage of the redevelopment of your garden, from gardening to decoration.
The cheapest and easiest way to transform your garden is with plants. An updated planting scheme with the easy maintenance of perennials will require much less work and annual costs than demanding perennials.
You should follow these tips to make the most of the plants in your garden.
1. Plant Flowers In Pots Near The House
It is the most straightforward advice for those who want to save money in their backyard. Flowers are inexpensive, decorative, and often the first thing that guests are attracted to.
They are particularly useful in a small area, on a patio or terrace, or in a courtyard without a lawn, where they are visible from the inside.
You can create an impressive flower arrangement with pots and planters if you do not have room for beds. They will be easy to maintain, and if you get bored, they are easy to move and change.
If you have plenty of room for beds, try adding plants that flower at different times of the year, so there’s always something interesting to do.
2. Vertical Planting: A Cost-Cutting Garden Technique
Create a vertical planting effect: We are talking about plants that grow upwards, whether they are trees, large shrubs, mountaineers, or hedges, especially those that are well suited to quickly establishing privacy and ensuring safety.
The cheapest option is possibly to start with fast-growing climbers such as Clematis armandii or Wisteria. Buy a mature plant that you can afford for quick results. Another option is to use hanging plants with plants that follow in their tracks or create living walls.
Do you have a little more to spend? Using trees to create a ceiling in your garden, just like a gazebo or pergola, will always be cheaper than building a completely new structure.
Plant samples give your garden an instant sense of substance and proportion that is difficult to achieve otherwise.
The same can be said about borders. Instead of paying the contractor to build a fence, invest in a hedge as well as creeping plants and herbs to define the border and increase the privacy and safety of the garden.
Again, it is always worth investing in the biggest plants that you can afford for a faster effect.
3. Plant Shrubs For Year-Round Interest
Do not forget to use a mixture of bushes of suitable value, including those that will flower, bear fruit, or have new autumn leaves, such as Sarcoccus or Viburnum. Use them with a mixture of spring, summer, and autumn flowering herbaceous perennials.
They come back from year to year without having to be repurchased. Therefore, they are durable and relatively maintenance-free and offer excellent value for money.
You can also plant a number of shrubs, and even some small trees, in containers if space is limited, or if you move away and want to take them with you when you leave (for an instant garden in your new home).
4. Plant Perennials To Spend Once
By placing perennial plants, you only spend once, because they will last not only all year round but also years and years to come.
Work out the total number of square meters of planting space and allow five shrubs or perennials for each meter.
If you shop at garden centers and nurseries you can expect to pay between £4 and £8 for a two-liter pot.
Join a local horticulture club and collect knowledge and cuttings or small plants for sale at discounted prices, saving more so your budget goes further.
Perennial herbaceous plants such as Lavender and Rosemary are particularly well kept at the border of the garden year after year.
Cheap Garden Ideas: Landscaping
Landscape design, of any kind, is a more expensive part of planning a new garden. However, there are still many ways to save money even if you are doing a complete garden renovation.
To make sure you can plan your finances accurately, you should investigate the best garden equipment that you will need to buy unavoidably before you start your landscaping project.
5. Paint Garden Furniture And The Garden Shed To Match
Is looking at the barn destroying your garden? By giving your shed a lick of paint and by painting wooden or metal garden furniture in the color of a shed, you can instantly give your garden an extra boost.
You might even want to go into town and paint fences. Our advice is to choose a color scheme carefully.
The more natural – the pale grey-green shades of paint – or the darker the color – think black and dark blue – the more you will show off your planting.
Try not to let anything ugly compete with your colors for attention. And if you are going to paint large areas, we would advise you to use a paint sprayer to get the job done quickly. However, paint brushes are cheaper, even if they’re more labor-intensive.
6. Discover What To Leave Out And What To Include
Heavy landscaping can be expensive like a small garden full of garden lighting, hard landscaping, and a custom-made water feature.
It may well be more costly than a typical suburban garden, which can accommodate a large (but fairly cheap) lawn and more (again, cheap) planting, which helps significantly reduce costs.
So when you design a garden, think about what you could live without. While you may want water features, fences, shades, garden furniture, an open dining area, or even terraces, awnings, and pergolas, look at what you could do instead.
A water feature that runs through solar energy rather than electricity not only saves on running costs but installation too. Outdoor kitchens may be pricey, but you can easily create your own without going to town – a barbecue on a table covered by a sturdy garden table could get you halfway there.
You want a summer cottage, but you can only afford a barn? There’s no reason not to buy a beautiful shed with windows, and you could paint it inside and out to give it the style of a summer cottage.
7. Cut Back On Garden Clearance Costs
Demolition and clearance can be costly, especially if access is difficult, and work has to be done manually. A small garden that needs extensive cleaning and has poor access can easily cost between £1500 and £2,000.
So where possible, DIY, reuse, or recycle. For example, an old concrete shed tray that you have demolished can be reused or used as a deck stand.
Or, if it is thick and the surface is soundproof, it may be the ideal stand for an attractive (and inexpensive) exterior tile, provided that its addition does not raise the height so much that the moisture resistance of the adjacent house is compromised.
8. Stage Garden Landscaping Can Work To Make It More Affordable
You should not have to spend a lot of money on the redesign at once. Implementation of the project proposal can be phased as funds become available.
For example, in the first year to construct a firm landscape, such as a patio, walls, and paths. Build ponds, pergolas, and water bodies (if not built-in) in the second year and plant other things in the third year.
9. Employ A Garden Designer For A Day
An experienced garden designer can save you money and time in the long run. Professional garden designers can assist you with everything from managing contractors and planning the entire garden, to recommending where to best balance your budget.
At least consider a one-day consultation to give you some ideas for the job. The initial cost may seem unnecessary, but it will save you money in the long run if you are unsure where to start, and new ideas or even recommendations for planting according to the soil in your garden will be invaluable. Look online, view customer reviews, or visit the Society of Garden Designers.
10. Simple Garden Designs Are Cheaper
Sophisticated curved walls, fences, and patterns when paving bridges are very expensive, as they are challenging to create. Garden building materials are often designed for simple spaces, so adapting them to different angles and curves will lead to some losses.
Simple straight fences are much easier to build and usually look better, especially in urban and suburban gardens where the unity of the garden and the architecture of your home is essential.
11. Sloping Gardens: How To Choose Cost-Saving Designs?
Having a garden on a slope can be expensive for redesigning, and sometimes there is a little above ground to show for time and money that you have invested.
Get started on a design that minimizes the need for extensive excavation, foundations, and drainage work. One or two level plateaus built into a slope, for a dining table or a pair of loungers somewhere, maybe enough “useful” space.
Solutions such as decking are also useful, as only a few foundations are required for a sub-frame. Unlike cobbled areas that are either built on top of or into the slope and are much more expensive.
12. Landscaping Materials: How To Choose Them On A Budget?
There’s always a way to reduce the cost of gardening. Dry laid stone is cheaper than “facing” brickwork, while western red cedar planking is less expensive than other wooden planking and works as well.
Hard surfaces are essential for seating, but cheaper gravel or even bark will work elsewhere. Both can be easily laid on the landscape fabric to hold down weeds, and you can break up large areas of gravel with oak sleepers or plant soil. Gravel is one of the cheapest materials for your garden, and you can lay it yourself.
If you live on a red brick plot, try dark grey or warm earth tones for a harmonious view and stay away from a yellow color. “If you live on a limestone property, warm, similar-colored paving stones and chips will ultimately look best,” says Paul Harvey-Brookes, an RHS judge and award-winning garden designer.
The cost of laying can range from £25 to £100 per square meter, so it’s worth exploring different materials that offer a similar look to suit your budget. Often you can find similar materials for a small fraction of the price and consider visiting reclamation yards.
13. You Can Use Inexpensive Cladding To Cut The Cost Of Garden Landscaping
The length of concrete or an unattractive boundary wall does not always require removal and replacement. Instead, it can be covered or lined.
For vertical surfaces – a solid trellis, woven walnut barriers, thinly placed pine strips attached to wooden purlins at the back, colored concrete plaster.
Terraces with a slope for more useful space. This bespoke border of fencing and landscaping in South Hams works beautifully in the countryside as a retaining wall for splitting levels.
14. Use Reclaimed Garden Materials
Recycled materials often look better than new, especially around traditional buildings, and a deal can be struck.
Recycled yards can be expensive, especially in cities, so take a day trip to the country yard as most will deliver.
Check out ads on eBay, Gumtree, and Freecycle, as well as supermarkets. You may not find what you originally wanted, but with a little imagination, you can create truly unique features from your findings.
15. Do The Garden Labouring Yourself
Labor costs can be more than 60 percent of the cost of redesigning a garden. Therefore, spend time considering what you can do yourself.
Planting, laying a new lawn, erecting pergolas and arches in the form of a set, wooden raised beds, simple plumbing, and even flooring – all this can be done by DIY enthusiasts.
However, you should know your boundaries. Paving masonry, brickwork, extensive garden lighting, and features such as dry stone walls will require specialists. Choose your local dealers to keep costs to a minimum.
16. Consider Outdoor Lighting When Landscaping Your Garden
Garden lighting can add a unique dimension to any garden and could potentially increase the time you can spend outdoors. Use the lighting to illuminate trees, beds, water bodies, and sculptures. It can then feel like a different space at night.
Waterproof festoon lights are a temporary and cheap solution for lighting your garden. They will create a comfortable and relaxed atmosphere.
Cheaper spotlights are useful where the fittings will be hidden by foliage. Therefore, you can save money if you choose to hide your garden lighting. If you plan to spend a little more money, go for attractive fittings that will be doubled as decorative items.
You should consult a qualified electrician for something other than a simple clip system. Cable routes and associated piping should be taken into account at a very early stage, even if you are planning to install the system itself later when additional funds are available.
17. Consider Lawn Edging To Add Definition To Your Borders
If you cannot afford expensive “zoning” using various materials and extended landscaping, you can quickly and cheaply create zones in your garden by setting up a lawn edging around your borders or flower beds.
Recycled lawn edging with reuse of rubber tires or plastic edges is the cheapest option. However, even with more fancy real stone lawn edging options, it is still less expensive than the redevelopment of an entire garden.
18. You Could Install A Water Feature As A Centrepiece
When adding special features to your garden, do not automatically assume that they are outside your budget. Water features, in particular, can be a very economical decorative addition to your garden, and it’s possible to find a decent water system with built-in lighting that costs less than £50. They also do not consume much electricity, some of which are solar-powered.
Above we have discussed a few of the thousands of ideas for simple upgrades that can be achieved on a low budget.
Be it a small garden, a patio, or a garden with a balcony it is possible to be the talk of the neighborhood with a safe and nice garden that costs you very little.