I designed this Zen Garden for a very small front yard of a contemporary townhouse for clients who wanted a low-maintenance, no-mow landscape. This garden looks good in every season due to its structure of evergreens, rocks, granite/gravel base and decidious ornamental tree. Minimal maintenance involved is watering, planting annuals for seasonal color ( optional ) and removing any leaves that may accumulate in the Fall, for which a leaf blower would be ideal. To further reduce the maintenance of watering, a low-cost, drip irrigation system with a timer could be added.
For DIYers that would like to tackle this project, I would advise starting by adding amendments to your soil ( compost and manure for sandy soil; cotton burr compost and black forest soil condition for heavy ) , and begin by selecting and planting the ornamental tree and shrubs. For small yards, garden centers can tell you how many bagged goods are needed to cover your landscape to a 3-4 inch depth . If your yard is larger, ordering a load of garden mix soil would be more economical. Dig it in well with the native soil. For the stones and gravel and garden mix topsoil , check out businesses in Chicago under " Landscaping Supplies " that carry these and pay them a visit with measurements of your plot in hand. Apply the gravel over a layer of paver base to a depth of 2-3 inches after everything is planted, and tamp it down .
Garden centers usually carry a good selection of water features, soil amendments statuary and of course, the annuals and perennials as well.
Written by Carolyngail at Sweet Home and Garden Chicago All rights reserved