If the grass on your lawn isn’t particularly lush (or doesn’t exist altogether), you may have some trouble envisioning your perfectly landscaped yard. Fortunately, there are many homeowners in areas where grass struggles to grow who have devised clever ways to work landscaping around the lack of turf.
We’ve collected three tips to inspire you to create your own grass-free paradise.
Rocks, Bricks, and Stones
When grass won’t grow, replace it with an alternative to plants. For smaller areas, decorative rocks make a wonderful replacement for ordinary grass. Gravel and pebbles can be purchased cheaply in a variety of sizes and colors to match your current decor. Break up the monotony of a single style of rock by including larger stepping stones to a porch, pool, or other areas you might frequent. For larger yards, covering the entire area with rocks may be impractical, in which case you have the option of turning your yard into a large patio. Bricks, vinyl, or large flat stones can be used to create a floor. Without grass growing underneath, with this option you’ll have little maintenance to attend.
If your grass is minimal and not particularly green, your lawn may appear a bit drab. Even if grass won’t grow on your land, you may have success with an entirely different type of plant– trees. The roots of trees reach more deeply into the soil, reaching water that shallow grass roots cannot, and certain varieties thrive in harsh sunlight that might kill grass. Several small trees scattered throughout your lawn can give you an organic atmosphere even if your lawn is brown. Consider placing trees in beds with mulch, straw, or rocks to minimize the appearance of dead grass underneath. But remember that if your grass already struggles to grow, it will probably not grow at all in the shade of a tree.
If trees aren’t your thing, or if you want more ground coverage for your yard, there are a number of hardy plants that have developed to do well in conditions that are not ideal for ordinary grass. Consider desert plants, such as succulents and bushy grasses, that do not need much water or shade. These plants can be placed in groups close together, and as they grow and expand, they’ll provide plenty of coverage. You won’t even notice that there is no grass underneath. These plants also have the added bonus of needing less upkeep than grass, so you probably won’t have to mow your lawn often during the heat of the summer.
You might feel like your yard is hopeless without any grass but it’s easy to cover up that one flaw and still create a beautiful backyard.