Compartmentalise the space
Rather than having one enormous outdoor area that requires hours of pruning and mowing, consider dividing the space into different areas of use. If you have the resources, a professional landscape designer can help sketch out the most efficient use of space, taking your exact requirements into account. They may suggest low-maintenance options such as:
- Create a large outdoor living area with a generous amount of comfortable seating. Paving slabs are easier to maintain than decking or gravel and will reduce the size of your lawn, so you have less mowing to do. Add a barbecue, pizza oven, or Mexican chimney to complete a stylish low-maintenance area that’s perfect for entertaining visitors on summer evenings.
- Swap flower beds and borders for shrubs, hedges, or a paved pathway around the edge of the garden.
- Think about replacing lawn with artificial turf – fake grass options are much more natural looking than they used to be and require very little upkeep.
- Use a few large containers for creating boxed in areas with plants or flowers. You’ll add a dash of colour to the garden without having to worry about constant pruning and keeping foliage in check. Adding a thick layer of gravel or slate will help to suppress weeds and keep contained areas looking tidy.
- Consider cordoning off a ‘natural’ area that you leave undisturbed to encourage wildlife and wildflowers.
Choose a limited number of well-suited plants
Limiting the variety of plants in your garden and ensuring that those you pick are well suited for the weather and soil type can save a lot of time and effort. Strong, salty winds can be challenging for Cornish coastal gardens, so avoid delicate plants that won’t survive the stormy winters. Hardy perennials are a good low-maintenance option, or if you aren’t going to be living at the property year-round you may like to consider succulents that don’t require frequent watering.
- Purchase plants that thrive in the conditions you have (sun/shade levels and soil type) rather than plants you like for their appearance.
- Avoid plants that need staking or plants that attract pests such as slugs or rabbits.
Add a single focus feature
Adding an arch, pergola, hanging chair or water feature can transform a plain outdoor area into a low-maintenance focal point that provides an extra element of interest or relaxation.
If you are thinking of buying or selling in Cornwall this year, the experienced team at Lillicrap Chilcott are happy to provide their local knowledge. Give us a call on 01872 273473 or see our website for current property listings.