Keeping your gardening manageable

As we already know, gardening is good for us both mentally and physically (read more about this here). However what happens when our mobility gets in the way of keeping our garden under control? The toughest call any gardener will face is acknowledging when it’s time to do less, either in the short or long term.

Do it yourself

Adapting parts of your garden to make it more low maintenance will allow you to fret less and enjoy your garden more. ‘Low-maintenance’ doesn’t mean no-maintenance, it’s just a way of managing your garden that doesn’t require constant attention.

Here are some quick tips for creating a low maintenance garden:

1. Start by reducing the size of the planted areas in your garden. For example, take the beds back towards the boundaries and replace them with paving if possible – a path around the garden works well. The fewer plants you have, the less work there will be.

2. Giving it a rest. Covering parts of your garden with light-blocking plastic sheeting stops weed seeds from germinating and halts the spread of perennial weeds. It’s crude, looks ugly, it doesn’t allow you to add compost/soil improver, but it works. When time allows peel it back, section by section, and begin cultivating.

3. Covering up. A sure-fire approach to slashing your gardening input is to cover ground with a water/air permeable, light-blocking synthetic fabric. It is a fantastic way of killing weeds before they can appear. It also stops seeds from germinating so your garden contains only the plants you want it to. The fabric should lie between the soil and whatever bark, gravel or stone anchors you lay on top.

4. Limit the number of different plants you have. Try to stick to between 5 and 10 varieties. Think swathes of rudbeckias or sedums or tall grasses. You’ll get to know what care and attention they need very well. And you’ll be able to spot weeds more easily and be better able to deal with them quickly.

5. Unleash the wilderness. Plants have been growing without your help for quite a few years now so they’ll be fine if you let them run wild. If you’re looking for control, this option isn’t for you, but cutting your involvement down to casual trimming frees up your time and lets your garden unleash its creativity.

Time to call in the experts

If you do not have a natural green thumb, need a little help to create a low maintenance garden or need help to maintain a healthy, beautiful garden, getting expert help can be your best option to achieve the perfect outdoor space.

Here are a few tips to make sure you find the right gardener for you:

1. Visualise what you want to achieve – You need to discuss the ideas and plans you have for your outdoor space. Start by determining the size of your space. Depending on the kind of service you’ll need, determine how frequent your gardening request will be.

2. Check credentials and qualifications – Opt for a gardener who has many years of experience in performing gardening tasks. It would be a smart idea for you to ask if they can show some of their previous works so you’ll get an idea of what your garden would be like. Apart from that, they must have the correct insurance.

3. Ask for a quote – Make sure that the quote given to you will include all aspects of the work that must be done on your garden. For instance, ask if the price is per visit if you require a regular maintenance program. Often, however, garden maintenance services are provided on an hourly basis. The amount varies depending on the location and the services involved. You might be given a flat rate if you choose to let the expert visit and maintain your garden monthly.

4. Look into the services offered – Most garden maintenance companies can perform any job related to gardening. Services offered will help enhance the aesthetics of your home and prolong the life of your lawn and garden.

Here are a few of the different services offered by a Gardener

Fertilisation  – Fertilisers will help keep the plants healthy. These substances also encourage the plants to produce high-quality flowers, veggies or fruits.
Garden Cleanup & Waste Removal – Garden cleanup services may include mowing, leaf collection, weeding, mulching, edging, watering, landscaping, fertilising and pruning. Waste removal, on the other hand, will deal with getting rid of all the rubbish from your garden and recycling them whenever possible.
Weed Control – Weeds can block sunlight and take nutrients from your plants. The best gardener will assist in weed removal as well as inform you how to successfully get rid of weeds from your garden.
Trimming and Pruning  – A reputable gardener can offer regular trimming and pruning services to keep your garden always looking at its best.

About Eve Williams

Eve Williams is the Content Developer and Social Media Administration for Eldernet. She is currently studying towards her Masters at the University of Canterbury. She has a passion for learning new things.