Are you tired of the upkeep required of the traditional grass lawn -- mowing, edging, fertilizing, and weeding. Or perhaps you are concerned about water shortages and drought and hate the thought of wasting precious H2O on a lawn. Fortunately, there are several alternatives to the traditional lawn that you can consider. The following guide can help.

Mulch and native plants

Sometimes called xeriscaping, a mulch lawn dotted with a few native plants can be the perfect low maintenance alternative. In drought-prone areas, stone mulches are generally used in combination with plants that require minimal water. In wetter climates, organic mulches like wood chips are preferred. The plants chosen in these climates may need a bit of extra irrigation during the driest weather, but generally, they are well suited to the climate.

This method of landscaping is best for those that want a yard that looks nice but is not utilitarian since it affords no area for outdoor play for people or pets. It can also be used in combination with a small lawn area or other landscaping option if you do want a small space for play.

Clover lawns

Clover lawns are gaining in popularity. Most regions have a native clover that is hardy and grows well with only the need for minimal irrigation. These low growing plants only require periodic mowing. Since clover is a legume, it is able to fix the essential plant nutrient nitrogen in the soil itself, which means it rarely needs fertilization. 

It's soft underfoot, as well, making it a good choice if you still want a lawn area but don't want all the maintenance required of traditional lawn grass. You can do the whole lawn or use it in conjunction with other lawn designs, such as a xeriscaped border.

Garden beds

For those that love puttering in a garden but aren't fond of caring for a lawn, replacing your lawn with a garden is a viable alternative. You simply design a layout of paths and garden beds, then install raised beds using timbers or bricks. Fill with soil and plant the flowers or vegetables of your dream. 

A formal garden layout can be especially attractive as a front lawn replacement. Traditionally, a central focal point is placed in the center of the lawn area, such as a fountain, gazebo, or statuary. Then, paths are made to radiate out from the central focus, similar to the spokes of a wheel. Finally, garden beds are installed and planted between the paths.

For more help, contact landscaping contractors in your area.