Gardening consumers are always looking for low maintenance. Plants and shrubs they can just put in the ground and forget about. That process does not exist. There are plants and shrubs that require less care than others, however. What makes a garden low maintenance?
Creating low maintenance gardens first takes some thought. What may be a chore to you may be a joy to another. Think of the things you enjoy doing in your garden and expand from there. If you don’t enjoy raking leaves, plant evergreens. If you don’t like pruning, plant slow growing shrub material. If you don’t like planting annual flowers every year, plant perennials.
Researching plants growth habits is very important for a low maintenance garden. You’ll want to choose plants that grow slowly and require little pruning. A formal garden is not a good choice for low maintenance. Perennials are a great way to add color to your garden. They come back bigger and better each year with little effort on your part.
Another way to make your garden low maintenance is the way you fertilize. A good organic fertilizer usually gets applied less frequently than a chemical fertilizer. For example, the famous liquid blue fertilizer recommends feeding once per week throughout the growing season. Definitely not low maintenance! Organic fertilizers can be applied as little as twice per season. Once in spring and once in fall (depending on variety). They generally have a slow release and last much longer with better nutrient quality and uptake.
Using good quality garden tools can also make your garden less work. Good, sharp tools will make your jobs easier and take less time.
Mulching your garden in the spring is a must. It is work, however, once it is done it will save you time and money. You will save time weeding because the mulch will keep the weed seeds from germinating and you will save money on your water bill because the mulch helps to retain moisture around the plants.
All gardens need food and water to survive. There are many plants that are drought tolerant once established. This does not mean they never need watering. It means they can tolerate dryer conditions.
Planning is the key to a good low maintenance garden. Once your garden is planted, using the proper tools and fertilizers will minimize work.