How to Create Beautiful Yards and Landscapes on a Budget - The Images of Spring

by katiem2

Memorial Day Yard and Landscaping on a Budget - Anyone can have a beautiful landscape without spending a lot of money using recycled plants and materials easily found anywhere.

There are lots of materials you can recycle to create a beautiful landscape around your home. Those plants, bushes and perennials you admire while driving around can all be yours too for free. Once you start thinking about your friends and relatives who have gorgeous landscapes, yards and gardens tap into these abundant resources. Most if not all of them have the very plants you admire and would be happy to share them with you. The best kept gardens and landscapes require maintenance which includes thinning out the plants, flowers and sometimes flowering trees coming up as volunteers. Simply call them up, tell them you want to start landscaping and admire their style. Ask if you can come over and help this spring in trade for starts of their plants. In the process you will learn a wealth of information and perhaps a few other recyclable additions to your landscape and yard. Those who enjoy gardening and caring for their yards and landscape enjoy sharing with others. They love the earth and mother nature and are always happy to help see it spread around.

Touring a Budget Landscape

Building a network of gardening friends, neighbors and family is a great resource of recycled materials and plants.

Hi, I'm Katie and I'll be your host for the day.   Today  will  give you the grand tour of my personal landscape and various gardens I've accumulated over the years, most of which have been given to me by others. I hope you enjoy the tour, get lots of inspiration and embark on your own personal gardening adventure. Please leave any questions you have at the bottom of this article in the comments section and I will be sure to get back with you right away. Thanks for coming.

Strawberry Plant Starts

Spring brings many early things and yet strawberries are a big favorite.

My eldest daughter learned it's easy to get a big patch of strawberries going.  She planted four plants three years ago and now has a huge strawberry patch. Aren't they beautiful, if you look closely you can see the morning dew on them.

Anyone with a strawberry patch needs to clean it out in the spring as many new plants come up crowding the bed. You could ask for some starts and offer to clean the bed of any weed while doing so.

Strawberry Plants

strawberry plants
strawberry plants
strawberry plants
strawberry plants
strawberry plants
strawberry plants
strawberry plants
strawberry plants

A Blooming Spruce

This is an image of a pine in bloom, a blue spruce to be exact.

This is the very first Christmas tree of my youngest daughters life. We dig trees at a tree farm and enjoy living trees each year.  This is a blue spruce, the choice that year. We planted it in our yard the following spring.  I kept it in the garage during the remaining of the winter in order to keep it alive and in it's natural process.  It worked and is huge to date.  This is a picture of the same tree 13 years later.  

My Daughters Very First Christmas Tree

spruce

Free or Discounted Trees

Trees can be the most expensive addition to any landscape or yard.

There are lots of people out there with trees like those of mine you are about to see. These people often have baby trees sprout up in and around their trees in the spring. These little saplings take a lot of TLC and yet if you ask around and let it be known you'd love to take one in and nurse it to a healthy full grown tree they will be happy to watch for baby saplings saving them for you. 

The Endangered Ash Tree

This tree was planted the first year we moved into our house.

We've lived here 13 years now.  This purple ash was planted the same year as our first Christmas tree.  It's one of the many ash trees in danger of being eradicated as most all the other ash trees in our community have been due to an evasion of the ash borer. We've been treating our ash for the past several years and yet it has shown signs of falling victim to this pest.  If the city determines your tree to be infected they cut it down and burn the remains in an attempt to end the borers infestation.  

Our Purple Ash

This is a very special tree
purple ash
purple ash

This tree is an endangered species. It breaks my heart, this is an image of me laying down on the ground looking up into the canopy of our beloved purple ash.  The leaves turn a shade of purple once the leaves have matured near the middle to end of spring or early summer.

Thread Leaf Japanese Maple

The Japanese Maple is a favorite of mine, I have many varying types I will share with you today.

This is the blood good variety. It is huge as it has grown a great deal over the past five years. This beauty is a wondrous part of our happy home. I love Japanese maples and have come to understand them well. They are such a peaceful tree with magnificent beauty adding greatly to any landscape. These trees don't like harsh winds or sun.

Japanese Maple

tr

Another Thread Leaf Variety of Japanese Maple

tree
tree
This beautiful tree is only one year old.

Green Thread Leaf Japanese Maple 

I planted this maple last year. I bought it at a garden store and was heart broken to see it's leaves had been badly burned in transport. I knew this special tree would be tossed out in a matter of days as it didn't have long to live. In the hands of someone who saw no future for it this little tree would soon be gone. I paid a good price of for this tree and brought it home in hopes of saving it's life and now look at it. Ask for reduced prices on trees when damaged.

 It was such a little guy, I planted it near the edge of my koi pond where I could keep a watchful eye on it.  As you can see this amazing tree snapped out of it and now has me rethinking where I've planted it as this healthy Japanese maple is out growing it's home.  But it is amazing and I do love it.  

A closer look at the brave trees leaves now that they've healed and are thriving.

tree

The Beautiful Purple Japanese Maple

tree

The Purple Japanese Maple

Japanese Maple Trees are expensive and yet you can ask around for starts or look for damaged trees for a discounted price.

This beautiful tree is another Japanese Maple, it lives just across the koi pond from the little green thread maple you've just met. It is a beautiful tree I had this tree moved from my former house when I bought the house we now live in. Did you know trees can be moved if done so professionally?

I had a professional dig up and re-plant this special tree.  I've moved many trees. My trees are a big part of the family, they go where we go. 

 

The Weeping Pear

This is a unique weeping pear tree, it's an ornamental tree that actually bears tiny pears. The second image shows the pruned structure, this tree must be pruned each spring, I've just done so here..
treetree

Tulip Popular

This is one of the fastest growing trees, it has beautiful flowers, not yet bloomed and is amazing, this tree lives out back of my deck.
Tulip Populartree

Koi Pond on a Budget

Free bricks, stones and rocks of all types can be picked up for free.

There are endless resources for free building materials like those you're about to see in my own front yard just outside my front door. Great places to find free materials is at building and reconstruction sites,  Anytime you see an old business being torn down you can approach the supervisor and ask if there is any bricks, stones or rocks they need removed from the site after hours. I have removed entire large patio areas (with the help of friends and family) from tear down sites. Simply get a note of permission allowing you and your help to come by after hours and remove the agreed upon materials. This helps the supervisors get the job done faster and under budget. They most always have the materials removed by their crew and hauled off to land fills which in itself is a huge expense. 

My Recycled Koi Pond

Here you can see the little green maple who survived and the purple maple just across the way from it.

This is a very happy place, I set on the bench, feed the fish and enjoy the trees, rocks and all the wonders of nature. Nature is a great place to spend some very therapeutic time. I'll share more with you later. I'm not a good photographer, just like to reflect. I do hope you get the jest of it and enjoy the sites.

This pond was created using lots of recycled materials and plant materials. Once again others with ponds are often happy to share waterlilies as they multiply fast.

A peak down the path to my koi pond

pond
pond

A view from above

pond

Free Plants and Flower Starts

Columbine are beautiful flowers exploding in abundance and color each spring.

Columbine Flowers

I have purple and pink. These beautiful spring flowers consume my beds in the spring time. The only thing about this flower, that may be a negative for some, is they must be cut down after blooming.  

You must do this to make room for other plants and flowers to thrive, plus this prevents them from multiplying more and taking over.  They do so quickly.

I cut them put them down to the ground, toss the plant in a large paper lawn bag to dry and share the seeds with friends and family. I share all my flowers, I have flowers growing all over the United States, its a bit of a hobby.

I got my first seeds from my friend and neighbor Vicky she is responsible for the many columbine I've shared though out the many states I travel.

Columbine Flowers

I have millions of columbine growing in my beds every spring
flower
flower

My Daughters Cat Jellybean

She walks with me, we are now headed in the front door after our walk.
cat

Our Bees

We have bee hives I check on them each morning and snap a photo, they look great today.
bees
bees

Perenial Flower Starts

I've collected may starts and bulbs over the years most given to me by friends.

Flowers are a great way to both connect to nature and people. I've enjoyed sharing flower starts and bulbs with many family and friends.  It's a great way to share and enjoy the beauty of nature. I've even successfully shared trees.  I planted a weeping ornamental cherry tree down the street at my neighbors house four years ago. It was just a little start that grew from mine. I watch for baby trees.  I waited for this tree to get big enough to transplant, did so and today it is a big beautiful tree. The neighbors love it.

All of the flowers you are about to see can be shared, simply dig up a portion of the plants in the areas you would like to thin giving those sections to friends, neighbors and family.

Purple Iris

Planted two years ago
flower

Fourth of July Roses

A Mothers Day gift from my daughters years ago
roses
roses

Daisy's

My daughters first grade teachers favorite flower is daisy's and so we needed a good supply so my daughter could bring her teacher fresh cut daisy's., now look at them. My daughter still returns to her old elementary school to give her teacher flowers.
daiseydaisey

Budding Apple

The apple trees are off to a great start.
apple

The Bees

The bees love the flowers and fruit trees.
bees
bees

Blooming Ground Cover

This is aguga a very hardy ground cover with beautiful purple tones
plant

Mint

I grow mint, chives, and other herbs, this is mint it grows great spring, summer and fall
mint

Hens and Chicks

I love these fun plants hens and chicks, I have shared these far and wide as well, they are added to all of my stone walls edging my beds.
hens

Stone Walls

I love stones and rocks I have countless walls and stones added to my landscape
rock
Read and share old fashioned and old timey sayings wives tales funny hillbilly and other expressions and phrases of the past from all around America

Blue Hostas

I have several varietes of hostas added thoughout my landscape, great for shaded areas
hosta
hosta

Green Hosta

hosta
hosta
If you wanna have fun this summer you know it takes money to do it. Learn how you can have fun and earn money right in your own home.

Variegated Hosta

The tree hanging over is a Japanese maple I include them at every opportunity
hosta

Hosta and Rock

I've added a rock between these hostas, I collect rocks from all over the world.
rock
rock

Beautiful Colorful Landscape Rocks

I have an extensive collection of rocks, I've received them as gifts from friends and family.

One of my best sources adding to my collection is my uncle E.J. and aunt Kathy.  He's an air force polite, now trains others to fly, and travels extensively. He has brought me rocks from all over the world. It amazes me as to how he brings such heavy additions to my collections and yet I am so grateful. Now I'll dabble a bit in my rocks showing you a few I have added to my landscape.

A Buckeye Rock

My Daughters Father and I once owned a excavating company, before the economy tanked, during which time he dug up some amazing rocks from our many projects.
rock
rock

Ohio Rock

rock

Unique Rocks

rocks
rocks

My Stone Hinge Rock

Or so I call it...
rock

Big Rock Little Rock

rock

Table Rock

rock

Rock on Pedestal

I ran across these old pedestals and fell in love I have several of them in my landscape on which I put rocks.
rock
rock

Stone and Pebble Sidewalks

I like adding stones to my yard, this is a nice way to make it comfortable and beautiful
rock
rock

Rock and Pebble Path

Plus see how I enjoy adding rocks to the yard, its makes for a great path you can mow over with ease. This path has been added just around a landscape bed. This creates interesting trails throughout the yard.
pathyard

Rock Trails

This is another rock trail added to the yard as you can see the grass is just beginning to grow in around the rocks. This path leads to my back gate.
yard stone path
yard stone path
our cat looking at the fish
our cat looking at the fish

Old Treasures and Keepsakes

The best and most authentic landscaping ideas come from hand me downs.

Many great additions can be found in the old family attic, old buildings and barns as you're about to see below. I live in the suburbs near a big city. You can have nature where ever you live without spending much  I live at the end of a culdesac. Cul-de-sac - French for dead end. which makes for a great living experience. I have the best of both worlds, I've created my own little natural habitat while enjoying the many attributes of the big city, next door neighbors and a quick run for anything I can imagine and all on a budget. Thanks for sharing with me, it's been great having you. I leave you with a few images of my eclectic side adding the many family treasures and oddities I've found.

Much Spring and Renewal, Katie

My Eclectic Expressions

I now share with you a bit of my eclectic side as I love adding this to my landscape.
rock on pedestal
rock on pedestal
bird bath
bird bath
frog house
frog house
retro yard ornament
retro yard ornament
sun dial katie style
sun dial katie style
antique lighting
antique lighting
old water pump with horseshoe
old water pump with horseshoe
old can ?
old can ?
bench made from split logs
bench made from split logs
tea anyone
tea anyone
bleeding heart
bleeding heart
cool rock
cool rock
my pet rock around flag pole
my pet rock around flag pole
cool rock and railroad nail
cool rock and railroad nail
Updated: 04/22/2013, katiem2
 
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Q & A section, add any questions you have about landscapes and yard beautification below.


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katiem2 on 04/22/2013

Stephanie, Great to hear from you and thank you for the gardening tips and experiences. Bugs are a big problem here in Ohio as well. With the mid winter the insects will no doubt be worse. I use a simple solution, spraying it on my plants. It kills the offending insects. Here's a link to it. http://wizzley.com/how-to-make-homema...

Stephanie Henkel on 04/22/2013

Love your article, all of the photographs and landscaping ideas. I have built much of my landscape and flower gardens from free plants given to me by friends and relatives. The Arbor Day foundation gives out free trees and shrubs every spring, and I've gotten some wonderful crepe myrtle, dogwood, sycamore trees and persimmon trees for my back yard.

I live in eastern North Carolina, and we have a constant battle with insects and humidity. Ants, slugs, mildew, grasshoppers... It's frustrating that plants grow so fast and beautifully only to be eaten by voracious insects!

By the way, the old milk can you have pictured does make a great accent piece!

kim on 06/17/2012

Stunning pictures of spring. Nice to think back to spring as it is so dry now. Beautiful pictures of nature and to think you're not a photographer. Nice !

katiem2 on 05/31/2012

justin-yao, I agree I love going out in my landscaping to transplant while a cleansing spring rain falls, it's one of my favorite things. People, neighbors used to think I was a bit daft seeing me out in the rain, but they've become used to it and now that they know me better realize I'm okay. Love the spring rain. Thanks for visiting the signs of spring, great to meet you.

justin-yao on 05/31/2012

Spring is a wonderful season. Life begins again.

katiem2 on 05/29/2012

Miaden, So glad you took the time to share my spring pictures and a little, or big, bit of me and the things I enjoy doing. I do wish it would rain... very dry here.

RubyHelenRose, Great to hear from you and your poetic expression of spring.

Mladen on 05/26/2012

Love the photos, Katie! Spring is my favorite season of the year. And that Jellybean is such a beautiful cat. I love cats!
I enjoyed your selection of photos. I am amazed by this garden of yours. You really have sense for nature, and plants. Oh, and that tea pot. :)

RubyHelenRose on 05/24/2012

The flowers budding on the trees. The birds feeding their babies, and fixing their nests.

katiem2 on 05/24/2012

lindylou2, You can do it, start with one small area and enjoy. It really is amazing for me to walk around and remember when I first began. I'm a very energetic person, constantly gotta be doing something till I make myself so tired I collapse at the end of each day. I spend time outside everyday because I love the outdoors, so if you like the outdoors you'll get hooked. Thanks for visiting great to hear from you.

Guest on 05/24/2012

Katiem2,
I don't know how you have time to write. You have published something wonderful and I have enjoyed your hobby. I live in the country after leaving the city, and this is not close to a big city. It is small. I have lots of garden space. I wish I could get the courage up to start a flower garden in my back yard.


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