Tips GB

21 Easy low-maintenance garden ideas

By Airtasker

Updated: June 28th, 2023

If minimal watering and maintenance sounds like your cup of tea - you've come to the right spot!

If you enjoy the look of a garden but aren’t much of a green thumb, then you’ve come to the right place. The good news is that there are so many different ways you can create a low-maintenance garden so you can enjoy the outdoors with minimum effort. Here are just a few low-maintenance garden ideas to get you started.

  • Low-water plants: There are many low-water plants that don’t require much maintenance at all and are super easy to care for, especially if you lead a busy life.
  • Artificial plants: It might seem like a bit of a cheat, but adding artificial plants to already existing low-water plants is an easy way to get a greener garden.
  • Hardscaping alternatives: There are many hardscaping alternatives such as outdoor dining and living areas that are the perfect idea in a garden area that you want to use for entertaining rather than a place just for plants.

Check out these low-maintenance garden ideas to inspire your home’s foliage.

1. Outdoor dining

First, we have this gorgeous outdoor dining area. Utilise the space you have to accommodate more people when you’re in a social mood. Enjoy afternoon tea or a hearty meal with good company in a breezy open space.

dining table with wooden chairs set on the terrace
Source: Ground Picture on Shutterstock

2. Gazebo

If you are someone who loves spending time outside but prefers to relax rather than tend to a garden, then this low-maintenance garden design is for you. Gazebos lend an effortlessly elegant look to a space. You can use the shade as a lounging or dining area.

garden with modern gazebo
Source: Ground Picture on Shutterstock

3. Greens around the perimeter

Deck the perimeter of your lawn with greens. It makes for a luscious wall of calming colour. It’s easy to water every other day, depending on the kinds of plants you choose. Ornamental grasses, blue star junipers, and catmints are great low-maintenance garden plants to start with.

Garden stone path with grass growing up between the stones
Source: Andrey tiyk on Shutterstock

4. Artificial greenery

Using artificial plants is the quickest way to the ultimate low-maintenance garden. Artificial grass works well in a courtyard-type garden that would usually be a difficult place to mow. Artificial plants in planters are also a great addition to indoor gardens, especially if you have pets around.

Newly laid artificial lawn in small front garden
Source: Gerry Burrows on Shutterstock

5. Low-water plants

Another great plant idea for a low-maintenance garden is to choose plants that don’t require too much water. Have a look at the convenient tags on the plants at your local garden centre, and they will tell you the optimal condition for each plant. Usually, desert plants like succulents will work well in an area that may get forgotten. The good news is that if you do forget about watering for a while, it won’t be detrimental to the plant.

beautiful plants, cacti, and succulents in different design pots
Source: Followtheflow on Shutterstock

6. Faux topiary trees

Here’s another artificial low-maintenance garden idea. If you love the look of topiary trees but don’t want to have to go through the hassle of trimming them to shape every week, then perhaps faux topiary trees would be a good idea.

Artificial topiary tree in pot
Source: Nitipatara24 on Shutterstock

7. Lots of lawn

Want just the bare minimum? Roll out the grass for an easy mow and water every now and then. Plus, you’ll never have to worry that the look of grass going out of trend in landscape design due to its simplicity.

Garden with a freshly mowed grass lawn and colourful flower bed
Source: 1000 Words on Shutterstock

8. Garden entrance

Don’t have a backyard for a garden? Decorate the entrance of your home with low-maintenance plants like boxwood shrubs that thrive in sunlight and grow slowly, so there’s no rush to trim it often. Add potted plants, too, so you can redecorate easily without uprooting any of your greens.

Blue front door of traditional style home surrounded by plants
Source: David Papazian on Shutterstock

9. Outdoor entertaining

If you really aren’t a gardener and need the most low-maintenance garden possible, then why not replace your garden space with an entertainment space? Chat with a landscaper whose speciality is decking and hardscaping to create a space that is perfect for you.

Classy furniture on wooden terrace in garden
Source: Ground Picture on Shutterstock

10. Simple potted plants

If you don’t have much space for a full garden but want some greenery in your home, then potted plants are a great option. They can help soften a space, making it feel more homely and welcoming.

potted herbs and flowers
Source: Ingrid Balabanova on Shutterstock

11. Ground cover plants

Groundcovers are a great option for low-maintenance plants. They grow low and need little to no trimming, plus they spread easily. If there are some patches of soil where grass doesn’t grow well, this is the perfect alternative.

ground cover blooming plant
Source: speakingtomato on Shutterstock

12. Garden pathway

Afraid of your lawn looking too bare? Add a pathway with slabs of stone for visual interest. Pair it with artificial grass for an effortlessly neat garden.

pathway in outdoor garden
Source: Googee on Shutterstock

13. Desert Oasis

Cacti are great alternative garden plants. The low-maintenance types of cacti often need well-draining soil and sunlight. They also require scarce watering every three to four weeks.

Backyard rockery garden with green small succulent plants
Source: ben bryant on Shutterstock

14. Sandstone rocks

If you’re wondering how to border your gardens but still want to keep a natural look in your low-maintenance garden, you can use sandstone rocks around the border of your garden. This design helps to finish off the edges neatly. Plus, due to sandstone being a natural material, it will still look great in years to come.

sandstone walls and stones in a flowerbed in a terraced terrain
Source: Beekeepx on Shutterstock

15. Outdoor shower and spa space

If you want your garden to be as low maintenance as possible, then why don’t you just create an outdoor area to relax in rather than worrying about plants? Set up an outdoor shower and spa space where you can watch a movie or two under the stars.

Outdoor rain effect shower in a garden
Source: Alan SK on Shutterstock

16. Low-light indoor plants

If you’re not into constantly moving your plants around for the perfect amount of sunlight daily or you live in an apartment, you may want to invest in low-light plants. Philodendrons, snake plants, spider plants, and monsteras are some excellent examples.

Stylish wooden shelves with green plants and black watering can
Source: Bogdan Sonjachnyj on Shutterstock

17. Green wall

Keep your greens concentrated in one space for easy watering. Find an optimal space in your home to install your green wall. You can work with plants in crates, climbing plants, or even artificial plants.

vertical green wall with planting crates mounted on a wall
Source: lulu and isabelle on Shutterstock

18. Pebble garden

If you don’t want to have to worry about a lawn, then adding a pebble base to your garden is a great idea. You can keep some plants in your space for that extra pop of colour.

Bushes of violet lavender flowers above pebbles
Sources: bearmoney on Shutterstock

19. Palm perfection

Palm trees are the perfect low-maintenance addition to your garden if your home is in warm weather. They may need some initial care and frequent watering, but once they’re established, they don’t need much to thrive.

House with green grass and palm trees
Source: LeoAnunciacao on Shutterstock

20. Garden borders

If you’re wanting to add interest to your garden, then garden borders are a great idea. Keep your lawn clean and easy to maintain with a sprinkling of water around the perimeter of your home.

Shrubs and flowers In a border surrounded by a wooden fence and grass lawn
Source: Dean Clarke on Shutterstock

21. Marble tiling

Not too keen on grass for your garden? Lay down marble tiling for a luxurious design and deck the edges of your space with plants to get that green still in.

backyard with a seating area on a marble floor
Source: Procreators on Shutterstock

Hopefully, these low-maintenance garden ideas inspire the lush open spaces of your home. If you’d like to elevate your garden, connect with local professionals near you to get it done in no time.



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