Don't much care for working in your yard? If watching your neighbor manicure his or her lawn that would rival any professional golf course makes you feel a little bit inadequate, it might help to know that you're in the majority. According to consumer reports, only 7% of Americans enjoy working in their yards and for those that don't, it appears to be a pretty healthy hate. Sixty-two percent of homeowners said they prefer cooking, 33% said they would rather visit their in-laws and 17% said they enjoy the dentist more than their own yard.
There is some good news if you're looking for that professional look, but don't want to put in the time. A lot of the time, the money and effort people invest into their lawns isn't necessary. Here's how to save money and time while still rivaling the beautiful lawn across the street.

Mow High
According to experts, higher grass has plenty of advantages. First, grass cut too low grows faster in order to gain surface area for photosynthesis. Taller grass doesn't grow faster because it has the surface area it needs to gain energy from the sun. Second, higher grass robs weeds of much needed sunlight. When grass is cut too low, weeds rob the grass of the sun. Help your grass win the battle by putting your mower on the highest setting and let your grass grow to 5.5 inches before mowing. Not only will you mow less frequently, you'll save gas and wear and tear on your mower.

Fertilize Less
Some fertilizer companies tell you to fertilize your lawn five times or more. Most lawns will thrive if you fertilize on Memorial and Labor Day. This could save $50 per year or more along with the time you spend applying the fertilizer. If you use a lawn service, the savings are even higher.

If you hate mowing and bagging the clippings, don't do it. Removing the clippings from your lawn robs the soil of the nutrients found in the freshly cut clippings. Purchase a mulching mower and leave the bag in the garage.

Water Less
Watering your lawn a little each day promotes shallow roots making your lawn less resistant to periods of little rain. Instead, deep water your lawn once per week. Place a few canisters around your lawn with a mark that represents one inch of water. Once those canisters reach the one inch line, you know you've watered your lawn enough.

Sounds like a lot of work, doesn't it? Purchase a $20 compost bin from your local garden or home improvement store and fill it with yard waste. A mixture of green waste like freshly cut weeds, leaves and leftover grass clippings along with some brown items like fall leaves, cardboard, dead plants and small animal bedding provide the perfect ingredients to make the perfect low-cost and eco-friendly fertilizer. About the only maintenance your compost bin will need is a quick mixing once per week.

Buy Low Maintenance
Not all grass is created equal. Instead of purchasing the grass seed that is on sale at your local home store, purchase a species that is drought resistant, doesn't require a lot of water and is slow-growing.

The Bottom Line
Taking care of your lawn doesn't have to mean a lot of money. These tips will save you time and money, leaving you to enjoy your beautiful lawn with your family instead of spending all of your time working on it.

Related Articles
  1. Retirement

    5 Reasons Millennials Lead in Saving for Retirement

    Say what you want to about millennials but the one thing they are doing better than any other generation is saving for retirement. Here's why.
  2. Home & Auto

    Rent-To-Own Homes: How The Process Works

    A rent-to-own agreement can benefit homebuyers with bad credit or insufficient funds for a down payment. Here’s how one works.
  3. Home & Auto

    7 Must-Have Real Estate Contract Conditions

    Buying a home can bury you in paperwork. But it’s worth your time to make sure your contract contains these seven important conditions.
  4. Investing

    3 Small Steps to Maximize Your Investing Goals

    Instead of starting the New Year with ambitious resolutions, why not taking smaller manageable steps that can have a real impact.
  5. Investing

    7 Creative Ways to Save for an Early Retirement

    Take note of these out of the box steps you can take towards securing yourself an earlier, more comfortable retirement.
  6. Saving and Spending

    Saving $100 Now Is Better Than Saving $1,000 In 10 Years

    Learn why it is better to save $100 every year starting right now rather than $1,000 in 10 years, and find out the benefits of early saving and investing.
  7. Retirement

    Birch Box Review: Is It Worth It?

    Learn more about the convenience of the subscription beauty box industry, and discover why the Birchbox company in particular has become so popular.
  8. Investing Basics

    Understanding Real Estate

    Real estate is an encompassing term that refers to land, the buildings on that land, and its natural resources, such as crops and minerals.
  9. Economics

    Understanding the American Dream

    The American dream is the belief that anyone, regardless of where they’re born or into what class, can attain their own version of success.
  10. Home & Auto

    9 Tips for Handling Homeowners’ Associations

    Before you buy property in a community with an HOA, there are nine things you should do.
  1. How does a bank determine what my discretionary income is when making a loan decision?

    Discretionary income is the money left over from your gross income each month after taking out taxes and paying for necessities. ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. How does the trust maker transfer funds into a revocable trust?

    Once a revocable trust is created, a trust maker transfers funds or property into the trust by including them in a list with ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. What is the range of deductibles offered with various health insurance plans?

    A wide range of possible deductibles are available with health insurance plans, starting as low as a few hundred dollars ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. How do I know how much of my income should be discretionary?

    While there is no hard rule for how much of a person's income should be discretionary, Inc. magazine points out that it would ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What proportion of my income should I put into my demand deposit account?

    Generally speaking, aim to keep between two months and six months worth of your fixed expenses in your demand deposit accounts. ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. How do I use the rule of 72 to estimate compounding periods?

    The rule of 72 is best used to estimate compounding periods that are factors of two (2, 4, 12, 200 and so on). This is because ... Read Full Answer >>
Trading Center