Garden makeovers on a budget

October 08, 2016

Whether you have a large backyard or a small garden, giving it a makeover ready for summer doesn’t have to cost you the earth. In fact, if you are happy to take your time you can create a brand new outdoor space for barely anything.

Waiting for sales time at nurseries and supply shops, or waiting for markets or garage sales means you are likely to bag some great bargains on plants, pots and even outdoor furniture. If you see someone renovating or knocking-down a house in your neighbourhood, ask them if you can take home some of the old bricks or tiles they are throwing into the skip bin. You can clean them up and create a great pathway or patio with the bits and pieces, giving your yard a quirky and character filled feel.

While you are waiting for these sales and markets to pop up, you can get started on clearing out your yard so that it is a blank canvas and ready to go by the time you have collected everything you need. Check out some bin hire prices for Melbourne and pick a size that’s within your budget. Then fill it with all of the waste from the yard and you will already feel like the garden has been improved enormously.

Here are some more tips to undertaking your own garden makeover on a budget:

Plan ahead

Always have a plan in mind. If you know what you’d like the end result for your garden to be, then you won’t waste time or money on spontaneous purchases that don’t go with your new theme.

Concrete makeover

Dull, grey concrete patios can be bought to life with a cheap and easy trick; concrete stain. Choose a warm and vibrant colour to transform your outdoor area. You can do it in a pattern, such as a checkerboard, or you could just do the one colour all over. To create patterns, you will need to cut grooves (kerfs) into the concrete, then use different coloured stains for each of the areas of concrete.

Create a path

If your overgrown yard resembles a forest more than a backyard, a quick and easy makeover is to create a path through it. By making a winding path through the bushes, it will give the impression that the overgrown look is intentional and will therefore change the overall look and feel of the yard.

To make the path, you’ll first need to clear some space. Hire a skip for the green waste, and then put stakes into the ground to lay out the pathway. Fill the path with crushed rock or gravel as it is a more inexpensive option than pavers.

Define your spaces

A really easy way to give your yard a fresh new look is to define your different areas. If you have a space for entertaining, a space where the children like to play and a space for relaxing, then highlight it by defining each area. Simply reposition your existing furniture and toys so you can clearly see the designated areas. Create boundaries with rows of potted plants or by using outdoor rugs. Doing this one simple trick will have a big impact on the overall look of your backyard.

Get out the paintbrushes

If you don’t like the look of the external wall of your house, grab a paintbrush and paint it with a colourful mural. If you aren’t the artistic type you can just paint it in complimentary colours that match the garden. The same can be done for your garage or shed if they are in the backyard.

And don’t stop there! While you have the paint out, choose some large rocks from your garden and paint them in different colours. Keep them dotted around the yard, in between the foliage for bright pops of colour throughout the garden. Also clean up and paint any old pots to give them a fresh new look. Try your hand at painting old watering cans or garden utensils like rakes to add a bit of character. And if you have any old wood laying about you can turn it into a sign by painting a special saying on it.

Make your own seating

If you are a bit short of funds for new patio furniture, try making your own. Use cheap concrete blocks stacked on top of each other, and place a foam pad on top. Paint the blocks in vibrant colours and pop some inexpensive outdoor cushions on top to give it a finished look.

Use lighting

An easy way to spruce up any outdoor living area is to add lighting. You can buy a string of lights for a fairly low cost from most hardware stores, department stores or even some of the big supermarkets. Stringing them in the air or wrapping them around a tree can give the entire yard a festive feel and will ‘brighten’ up the place.