Planning a Garden for Busy Lifestyles

Starting a garden can be simple and time-consuming – all it takes is thoughtful design work and careful selection of which plants to grow.

Before planning your garden, identify its goals. This could mean taking up a new hobby, enjoying fresh flowers or attracting wildlife – whatever it is, having this clarity will keep the planning process focused and less overwhelming.

Lawn Removal

As water rates skyrocket annually, many homeowners seek ways to lower their water bills. Revamping their landscape often provides the solution. One easy and inexpensive way is removing the lawn, according to The Garden Professors blog; then plant low-water use perennials like Rose Marvel Salvia with vivid magenta pink flower spikes which attract butterflies and bees, or add a decorative accent such as Hoffmann’s Teddy Bear Cholla which blends desert allure with resilience symbolism into the decor.

Garden Path

Garden paths are integral to any garden, serving as an access route and exploring tool. When designing one for your own space, take into consideration both its functionality and visual aesthetics – for instance, a straight path can make the space feel smaller, while curvier paths create intrigue by teasing the eye or creating visual interest, encouraging visitors to discover more!

If you want a low-maintenance pathway, gravel or stone surfaces better meet your needs than grass. Both materials are more durable and last longer; keeping them clear of weeds is more accessible than maintaining grass tidy!

Select low-maintenance plants suitable for your climate and soil conditions when planning a garden path. Opting for plants that don’t fit can result in overwatering or even death from lack of sunlight or shade; soft fruit trees require only annual pruning; deciduous shrubs like Euonymus, Holly and Magnolia thrive as ground cover, as do perennials like Sedum Geranium Periwinkle for easy care.

Not only should you select low-maintenance crops, but you should also opt for low-maintenance materials for your path. A paved path is less likely to become muddy or dusty than dirt trails, and keeping it free of weeds and algae growth is much simpler. Wooden steps make an excellent option for sloped garden paths, while logs can create level steps of various widths for sloped garden paths.

If you’re ready to begin planning your garden, this free planner is a fantastic tool. Offering a birds-eye view and the ability to plan fences, gates, ponds, trellis and sheds with an overhead view of your property as a starting point, upload pictures of your property for easier visualizing the finished project or save designs and print lists of items needed – especially helpful when purchasing from garden centres!

Fire Pit

Many gardeners rely on their gardens as an escape from daily stressors. Yet, gardening can become an added source of strain if it consumes too much of one’s time – especially when plants become overtaken with weeds or the landscape requires extensive pruning and watering. Therefore, it’s essential that gardeners work smarter, not harder – by selecting crops requiring minimal upkeep, they can reap a bountiful harvest without giving up valuable gardening time!

Fire pits can be the focal point of any outdoor space. But when considering installing one in your yard, you must carefully consider its surrounding plantings if you wish it to become the centrepiece of a destination garden experience. Sunken seating arrangements with raised fire bowls work perfectly here; ensure the plants surrounding it remain low enough that any views don’t get blocked out or create any trip hazards.

Another factor to consider when placing a fire pit in your yard is its predominant wind direction. If it blows embers from the fire pit onto combustibles such as shrubs, dry leaves, and mulch, this could spark a wildfire in the neighbourhood. For optimal safety reasons, position it away from these potentially explosive situations if possible.

Plant trees with easy-to-grow fruits if you want to use the area surrounding your fire pit as an outdoor dining space. Soft fruits like currants and fall-bearing raspberries require only occasional pruning, while freestanding fruit trees like apples or figs produce yield after yield with little effort from you. To find such crops using Garden Planner, click the filter button at the left of the selection bar and choose ‘Easy to Grow’ as your crop type filter option.

Movable fire pits are an elegant addition to any backyard, providing luxury at an economical price point. These portable fireplaces are available in different sizes, making them a budget-friendly solution that works in most yards. When selecting the appropriate plants and trees for the space, lighting should also play an integral part in a fire pit design plan; ensure safe pathways lead to it with lighting effects for safety and uplighting or moonlighting nearby specimen trees for the atmosphere.


Many gardeners choose plants based on colour, texture, or the ability to attract birds and insects; however, to achieve a practical garden, it’s also essential that the right plant for its environment be chosen; otherwise, less-than-ideal conditions could result in disease and shorter lifespan of your chosen varieties. Be looking for varieties that don’t need frequent staking, deadheading, or complicated pruning to remain looking their best!

An additional way to make gardening simpler is prioritizing tasks. Whether using an app on your smartphone or an old-fashioned notebook, writing out and scheduling weekly gardening checklists with short bursts of functions can help reduce the number of chores you need to take care of while making the most of the limited time available. Focus on the most fulfilling activities to maximize productivity while enjoying yourself along the way!

Entry points and paths are another garden element that can be designed with busy lifestyles in mind. By strategically adding gates or arrows to restrict access and guide visitors, gates and paths can add visual interest while decreasing maintenance needs. Although you may not be able to move or remove entry points as part of property boundaries, strategically planning how to access different areas can provide visual interest while decreasing upkeep time requirements.

The BBC Garden Planner is a free program that makes designing your garden simple with one click of a button. Available for desktop computers and mobile devices, you can take your plans wherever you go! Featuring ideas from some of the UK’s premier garden designers and saving up to ten designs, then print off a list of plants and items necessary for their implementation in your garden, including their names and descriptions – this app makes designing gardens fun!

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