How to have garden without Gardening

If you’re reading this page, its safe to say you’re interested in gardens. Gardens are beautiful, natural spaces that many people turn to for physical, mental, and spiritual exercise, not to mention food. But gardens often require a lot of time, work, and expertise. Knowledge of plant selection and maintenance, as well as consistent watering, pruning, weeding and mulching, among many other tasks, are necessary inputs to creating a beautiful and functioning garden. Many gardeners however are too busy, physically incapable, or otherwise uninterested in gardening. What then, are the options for those who wish to have their dream garden but do not wish to participate in the act of gardening? Luckily there are many alternatives to active gardening that will still allow for a garden that brings all of the benefits without the usual commitments of time, energy, and expertise.
Of course, the easiest alternative to creating and maintaining your own garden is to hire someone else. Gardening and landscaping businesses can be found everywhere and offer a wide variety of services that fit your requirements. The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics for 2017 states the landscaping industry made over $50 billion in revenue in 2012, with the list of companies growing at a 10% annual rate. Average prices for gardening vary a lot by the type and location of work but general hourly wages range from $50 to $100, not including materials. To install a garden from scratch, most homeowners paid between $1300 and $5300. However, more formal gardens may cost between $12 to $25 per square foot, or $25000 to $50000 for a 50×50 foot space. Maintenance costs range between $100 to $400 a month, again depending on the size and complexity of the garden. This is the easiest way to create and maintain your dream garden without doing any of the actual gardening work, but these prices may be unrealistic for the average garden lover. Fortunately, there are still various other options for having a beautiful garden without doing the gardening.
If you can’t afford to hire a professional gardener, you can still enjoy a garden with little to no maintenance effort by following a few simple guidelines. To achieve a hands-off garden, one of the most important requisites is smart plant choice. Plants that require very little to no upkeep are usually native to your area and can thrive in their natural conditions. Other low-maintenance plant groups include disease and pest resistant plants, perennials that will survive cold winters, and dwarf varieties that wont require constant pruning. Of course, even with a perfect plant selection, garden problems can still arise.
Pests (insects, rodents, weeds, etc) are probably the biggest issue most gardeners come across. Even if you’ve selected pest resistant plant varieties, insects can still find your plants and devour them, but by working with nature, its possible to keep insect numbers down. Creating spaces for insect predators is a fantastic way to allow nature to garden for you. Birds and ladybugs are excellent predators that will happily live in your garden and clean your plants of pests like aphids and caterpillars before they get out of control.
Watering your garden is another task that cannot be avoided. Even with native and drought resistant plants, water shortages can still stress a great garden. To beat these droughts without manual watering, rain collection systems and timed-release valves are well-established solutions. Rain collection systems are installed below gutters to collect and store rainwater that falls on a nearby roof. When connected to a timer valve that automatically releases water every morning (or at any other interval of your choice), you garden will get all of the water it needs without any actual work.
Thus, hands-off gardening requires hiring someone else to do it for you or planning your garden ahead of time by anticipating potential problems and selecting the plants and equipment to do your work for you. Typical gardening costs vary by location and garden type, but anything is possible with the right budget. For a truly no-maintenance and no cost garden, plant selection is key, as is understanding how to let nature do your work for you. With a little money, or a little planning (or both) you really can create and keep your dream garden without any of the actual gardening work.