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Whether you’re looking to just spruce up a small area of your yard or completely re-do the whole landscape, you need to figure out how much work you can (realistically) take on by yourself.

Even if your thumb lacks even a hint of green, you may still be able to manage some smaller landscape projects with a little bit of research and time management.

How to Do-It-Yourself

We recommend that anyone considering a landscaping project do the necessary prep work. We’ve put together a handy DIY checklist to help guide that preparation, and get you ready to have a successful project with beautiful, healthy results:

  • Research. – Is there a small project you have in mind, but you don’t know where to start on it? Go online and research the types of plants you may want to use and what type of soil they need. Also, look up the skills you may need to bring those plants to fruition, and try watching online videos for tips to master them.
  • Create a budget and stick to it. – A small project shouldn’t cost a fortune; create a reasonable budget, and decide in advance how much you plan on spending. Remember that landscaping is a many years long investment. You’ll spend a certain amount laying its roots, and you’ll spend a certain amount on upkeep year-to-year after that.
  • Find your style. – Your landscape should capture your personality. Account for what your yard currently looks like and the types of activities you wish to use your yard for in the future. For a very specific style with more complicated landscaping, it’s best to seek professional advice.
  • Start with fresh eyes. – Declutter your yard so can evaluate your project in its entirety. Clearing out overgrown areas can help you establish a more clear vision for your landscaping.
  • Be strategic, not impulsive. – Don’t just buy a piece of outdoor furniture because it’s on sale; think about how you want your plants and pieces of décor to match. Patience and strategy are key here and cannot be underestimated.
  • Consult an expert. – When in doubt, ask for advice. A landscape professional can help give you perspective and assess your ideas to create a plan that is the best for you.

Depending on how good you are with a shovel and a garden hose, you may be able to manage several small projects over time. However, major projects that require planning may benefit from the help of others or even the help of a skilled professional, so bear checklist item number six in mind throughout your project’s duration. Get help when you need help, but other than that, as long as you have prepared for your project thoughtfully, you should come out the other end of your landscaping project with a beautiful lawn and a beaming sense of pride.

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