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How to Create a Garden For Free in Four Steps

Updated on September 4, 2017

“A garden requires patient labor and attention. Plants do not grow merely to satisfy ambitions or to fulfill good intentions. They thrive because someone expended effort on them. A garden is a grand teacher” -Liberty Hyde Bailey

A garden is an excellent addition to any home. Not only does it create interest and outer visual appeal, but it helps the homeowners develop a hobby as well. However, most homeowners would not concern themselves in creating a garden in their homes as they are under the misguided impression that this would be an exorbitant expense. Fortunately, there is an excellent way to create a garden for absolutely nothing at all—such is the case with the Free Garden. The Free Garden is the moniker given to a garden that is far more rewarding and creative. It is so much more than ordinary gardens inspired by magazines and weekend projects. A Free Garden allows you to build relationships with other gardeners who you can learn a few tips and tricks from or even share some plants with.

Furthermore, a Free Garden does not just have plants, flowers and decorative objects—it has a story to tell. Each ornament, plant, and element found in the garden has value and would add more than just aesthetic appeal to your own little natural haven. So, if you want to beautify the lawn of your home in Solstice, here is how you get started with your garden:

1.) Plan the Garden

Remember, you do not just start a garden and leave it at that. Taking care of a garden requires your commitment and effort. Otherwise, you will just end up with an eyesore clump of weeds. Consider how much of your time you want to dedicate to taking care of your garden. Take note: Smaller gardens would need lesser maintenance while larger gardens would require more time in the future as well as the beginning. From here, you can begin your research and find a plant zone map to give you an understanding of how to adapt to your climate. Then round up some garden tools (shovels, hoes, spades, rakes and the like) which you can easily find in yard and online sales. Lastly, consider how you want your yard to look and how you wish to decorate it. Look for an area where water takes thirty minutes to drain as this is a prime spot for planting.

2.) Build the garden

Start laying out the area with a hose (Pro Tip: Curves look better than straight lines). After that, you can cover the grass with newspaper and hose it down to keep it damp. Shredded mulch should then be used to cover the newspaper which you can easily find in your local landfill for free. Wait several months then turn the whole mess over. Your glass will be likely dead and the newspaper decomposed—use a heavy-duty rake to make the soil nice and fine. Then you mix in the compost. Compost can typically consist of anything from grass clippings, shredded leaves, coffee grounds and shredded teabags, eggshells, manure and the like. With those resources readily available at home, there is no absolute need for you to buy fertilizer.

Your next step is to build your compost in layers. Make sure to aerate this often by turning the pile every week. An aerated compost would encourage the growth of useful microorganisms and is less likely to emit foul odors.

3.) Ask for plants and flowers

As this garden project's aim is to build a garden out of nothing (or by spending less), you have no room to be choosy. However, this is an opportunity for you to be creative. Sources of free plants can come from family, friends, neighbors, and individuals with a similar hobby to yours. However, to make your gardens visually appealing, just make sure that you plant the taller stuff in the back. From here, you can incorporate as much garden styles as you want or just freely decorate as you wish. Remember, your creativity knows no limits.

4.) Scavenge for decorative elements

Make your gardens even more interesting and beautiful by adding decorative elements to complement the splash of colors. The accents of your garden can be anything from household items you no longer use to cheap buys from the thrift store. There is no absolute need to spend a lot for lawn ornaments—that old picnic basket you have? It can serve as an excellent flower pot with a little dash of creativity thrown in. An old ladder? Do not junk that just yet as that would make a charming addition to your garden with a flowering vine growing up the step containers. Your options are limitless—just think out of the box.

A free garden concept is an excellent alternative for homeowners who want to start a garden without spending a dime. So, if you are thinking of starting a garden of your own, do not spend just yet and utilize the ideas above to work on your garden.


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