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​How to Landscape a Lot of Land Without Busting Your Budget

Purchasing a home with a lot of land can be a great investment. A beautifully landscaped yard can quickly become your favorite place to spend time in your North Carolina home. When it comes time to landscape your property, you might have been surprised at how expensive the first few estimates were. The good news is, there are plenty of ways to landscape a large property while staying on budget.

  • Create an exterior living environment. When you think of the word landscape, hardscaping is only one facet of this type of creation. Landscaping is truly about creating a livable space outdoors. Think about it like you’re decorating a room.
  • Minimize hardscaping. Hardscaping refers to concrete pads and retaining walls. This is the most expensive component of landscaping. Can you build a deck instead of pouring concrete or laying stonework? Will plants create a comfortable outdoor living space? The more you can focus on garden design and greenscaping, your landscaping dollars will stretch much further.
  • Move less material. Landscape installations are typically so pricey because there’s usually a lot of material to move around. This usually requires equipment, disposal of material, purchasing of new materials and moving them in. Think about what you can re-use from around your property, or avoid disposing of dirt. Can you find stones or bricks to use as part of your landscaping? Can you move dug up dirt somewhere else on your property?
  • Get your hands dirty. Putting in gardens and planting is reasonably inexpensive and something you can easily do over a nice weekend. A big component of an appealing landscape is the backdrop. Planting flower and other plants will help give you a nice background to work with.
  • “Dry lay” a patio. For a patio, you can always remove grass, level an area and dry lay (without poured concrete) a flagstone product. It may not stay perfect but you can create the look and feel of an expensive installation. If you can’t level anything, use a rustic oddly shaped stone and it will look intentional. You can also use mulch or gravel to carve out a walkway instead of using stone.
  • Build up. A simple overhead structure like a pergola is often overlooked. It can be an attractive feature that helps a space look finished. A pergola can be built on a weekend for only the cost of the wood.
  • Comparison shop. Avoid going with the first quote you receive or purchasing supplies without checking out local competitors. Watch flyers for sales and take advantage of local savings when you can!
  • Buy used. As some people remodel their outdoor living spaces you might be able to find reclaimed wood or outdoor furniture at garage sale prices, or free!
  • Start your lawn from seed. Planting lawn seed can take longer and require more care than laying down sod, but will save you money.
  • Plan it yourself. You can avoid paying a professional landscaper to do your planning and design by doing it yourself. Spend some time in your outdoor space, and think of what you’ll use it for, consider the flow of traffic, what kinds of social events you’ll host and start designing from there. You can find lots of free ideas online and in landscaping magazines.
  • Walk through your neighborhood. This is an excellent place to get inspiration on what you like and don’t like as you start planning your landscape.

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