Question: How Can I Convert My Lawn To Something That Requires Less Upkeep and Water?
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Question: I’m interested in converting part of my lawn to something that doesn’t require as much upkeep, and water. Seems like by July, it’s just brown and dead anyway. What are some options? Thanks!
Most of us love a beautiful expanse of green lush grass. There just something to be said for running in bare feet through that lawn. Brings back memories of being a kid on summer days and nights! That being said….many people these days are either partially or fully replacing their lawn areas with alternatives. There’s a variety of reasons: perhaps your kids have grown up and moved out, so no need for play space; you live in one of the many areas that have become dryer over the years, and want to save on water and investing in keeping it green; you’d like to use that space for a garden patch, a pond, or a new berm with plantings; or perhaps you’re just tired of the time it takes to maintain it! In regards to suitable replacements for smaller areas of former lawn, here are some suggestions:
- Native bunch grasses – These will form small mounds that over time provide a naturalistic book and feel.
- Ornamental grasses – There are SO many gorgeous grasses to try! A few to consider are blue oat grass, or fescues. Fescue has one distinct advantage, you barely have to mow it but you have a sea of green. Usually you can mow fescue only once per month, it is shade and drought tolerant, and can stay green the entire year.
- In shadier areas, perhaps try replacing with small ferns and mulch.
- Ground covers are a great option. Try ones such as Creeping Thyme, which will get only 4” high and produces pink blossoms, and is one you can walk on. Corsican Mint is another hardy ground cover, and it emits a pleasant creme de menthe aroma. Check your local nursery for other options, usually in the ground cover section, labeled as “Stepables”.
- Large pavers mixed with succulents or ground covers can extend a patio area or create a new garden ‘room’ in your yard.
- Fill in the area with perennials, which will give you fuller, denser plantings starting with the first year, and lots of interesting shapes, foliage, and color to enjoy.
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