Landscaping without a Green Thumb

Landscaping without a Green Thumb

Not everyone was born with a green thumb. Even people with green thumbs make mistakes from time to time! If you want a beautiful landscape that catches the eye year round, but don’t feel you have a green thumb for it, don’t despair – just follow these three steps to making your lawn and garden a visual paradise.

Make a Plan

Literally get out the graph paper to help you visualize what you want for your front and back yard. If you want the front to look formal, and the back to look more over-grown, then divide your landscaping plan into two steps. Use evergreens in the front, balanced out with plants and bushes in either straight lines or patterns (stars, squares, circles, etc.) for a formal look. Then, in the back, you would go for ragged edges and curves for plant placement (be asymmetrical). Graph it out, piece by piece, until you have a plan of what belongs where, and what you want the final product to look like. If you’re not sure, go through landscaping pictures and look at different magazines for ideas.

Implement the Plan

Once you’ve decided where everything will go, and what you want for shapes, colors, and scents (and what wildlife those plants will attract), look around at your local farmer’s markets and nurseries. Buy local plants that fit your descriptions and desires. If you try to buy and implement plants that are not common to your region, you will work a lot harder and get disappointed with the results. Find indigenous flora to the area, and work it into your plans as needed.

Also, figure out ahead of time what kind of maintenance the plants you choose will need – and make sure it doesn’t ask for more time than you have.

Plan Maintenance

Now that your walkways, front yard, backyard, and driveway have all been beautified by the landscape you’ve implemented, you will need to maintain it. Follow the maintenance instructions for each type of plant, weed, water, and feed appropriately, and make sure you keep your lawn trimmed, but not too short. About 2.5 to 3 inches is a good height for most lawns.

Landscaping is important to keeping your property value up, and keeping your home safe (such as pruning old limbs on trees so they don’t crash through your roof in a storm). Make a plan for your property, and when you’ve implemented it, keep up with the necessary maintenance in order to enjoy pleasant sights, smells, and sounds year round.


  1. Anita Clark Realtor

    These are excellent tips that even someone like me who has a notorious black thumb can implement and have a beautifully landscaped yard. Thanks!

  2. Great simple Article to really help the novice or amateur gardener get a start.

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