There are several ways to make your yard look beautiful and not burn a hole in your wallet. No matter how big your property or house is, there is always an opportunity for affordable landscaping improvements. This article highlights 15 cheap simple front yard landscaping ideas to improve your yard, including costs for each.

1. Set up a Walkway

the walkway at a botanical garden picture

Adding a path within the landscaping can add depth to your yard. It can also provide people with another avenue to enjoy wildlife. Getting that morning walk-in will be much easier with a walkway in the landscaping.

Pavers or stepping stones are a perfect solution for someone on a budget looking for cheap landscaping ideas. Not only is the walkway functional, but it also directs attention to the best areas of your yard. Visitors can explore new spots by seeing one of these walkways.

Walkways can also preserve the grass in the long run. Setting up a walkway will provide visitors with directions on where to go. It also allows them to explore other areas of the yard. If you want to spice up the walkway, you can add plants or moss. This addition will create a sense of elegance, but it will also allow you to stay under budget.

Stepping stones and pavers will cost anywhere between $1-$15 per unit. You can get them for a good deal at your local store.

2. Distribute Mulch

mulching the garden with red cedar woodchip picture

If you want to show off your flower beds to the world, mulch is the perfect solution to make them shine. Not only will mulch deter weeds from plaguing your landscape, but it also adds texture to the home. There are also different mulch colors, which can match the home design or current landscaping.

Mulch also does wonders for moisture. Not only does it help the ground retain moisture, but organic mulches can also input nutrients into the soil. In the long run, mulch elevates your plant’s health and keeps you under budget.

If you are on a budget, you can get mulch for free. There are several places you can find pine needles, grass clippings, wood chips, compost, and leaves. However, your local home improvement store has plenty of options. A 500-square feet garden will cost anywhere between $150-$200.

3. Respect the Perennials

woman planting spring flowers in backyard in sunlight picture

Perennials, which provide beautiful colors every year, will save you money and time. Because you do not have to purchase or plant new ones each year, you can achieve cost savings in the long run. They are also a beautiful addition to the landscaping because of their vibrant colors and design.

You also get variety with perennials, as you can choose between hostas, tulips, asters, daylilies, hydrangeas, coneflowers, and lavender. Perennials might cost more than annuals initially. 

However, you must look at it from a long-term perspective. You will not need to invest time into planting them next year while having the flexibility to spend the money elsewhere when next year rolls around.

Depending on the type of perennial and store you go to, they cost anywhere between $10-$30.

4. Utilize a Tree Sapling for Breathtaking Beauty

planting a young tree picture

Planting a tree sampling is an excellent option for simple front yard landscaping ideas on a budget. Not only does a sapling add beauty to the yard, but it also boosts the home’s value. When you convince your clients about a sapling, the home value increase is always a great selling point.

Because tree saplings can grow into a giant focal point, you must place them strategically. Once saplings reach their full potential, they can help the homeowner achieve energy cost savings. Deciduous trees will deliver ample shade to the home, which will reduce the need for air conditioning. On the other hand, evergreens can decrease heating costs by obstructing cold winds in the winter.

When it comes to cost, you are dealing with anything between $0.50 to $1.50 per sapling. If you want to plant a medium or small tree, it will cost anywhere between $150-$200. At the high end, a large tree could cost thousands.

5. Grow Flowers Around Lamp Posts or Mailboxes

mailbox garden picture

Mailboxes and lamp posts can be critical focal points for a home. For instance, a lamp post landscaping idea can make these areas pop even more with a nice flower bed. The driveway and house will catch the eyes of people driving or walking past. You cannot go wrong with a small flowerbed or a string of roses or hydrangeas.

The important thing here is not to overdo the flowerbed. You do not want to make it seem overgrown or distracting from the rest of the home. Sticking with a perennial plant from a local store or nursery will do the trick. For those on a budget, this project will cost anywhere between $20-$250.

6. Elevate Your Garden Bed

wooden pot with growing greens on a balcony garden picture

If you want to put a unique twist on a flowerbed, raising the flowerbed is an ideal solution. An elevated garden will prevent any annoying weeds from growing in the landscape. It will also be an effective guard against pests. If you raise it high enough, it will keep out rodents too.

There are also several design options with a raised garden. A finished wood design will add to the aesthetic of the garden. You can also use other cost-effective landscaping materials like brick or cinder blocks while adhering to the client’s design needs. A raised flowerbed’s appearance will not only catch the attention of passing walkers but will also add to the beauty of the entire home.

There are many DIY-raised garden beds to explore, and you can complete them for under $50! The most important thing is to make sure it makes sense for both the client and your wallet.

7. Add Lighting

outdoor party string lights hanging in backyard on green bokeh with picture

Who says DIY landscaping cannot look good at night as well? Outdoor string lights are a cost-effective solution that can enhance the look of a yard. It will not only add a sense of elegance but will also create a “fantasy” vibe that many people love.

When you consult your clients on this cost-effective landscaping tool, you can mention how nice outdoor dinners will be. Luminescent string lights will not only highlight the plants and the garden, but they will also enable the family to enjoy the space after the sun goes down.

Outdoor string lights will go for anywhere between $10-$50. If you visit the dollar store, you can find these lights for an even lower price.

8. Utilize Household Items as Planters

A rustic bathtub is used as a flower planter

Another one of the cheapest landscaping ideas include household items. Repurposing household items is another way to save costs on planters and flower beds. If you work with a client with items they no longer use, this is a perfect solution. Ask clients if they have old barrels, wheelbarrows, tubs, or even pianos that can transform into a planter. Not only is this a recycling-friendly strategy, but it also adds a unique beauty to the yard.

You also want to make sure the items are appealing. Try to stay away from toilets or other non-hygienic items. It is also critical to choose an item that compliments the style and color of the existing landscaping.

The cost for this strategy is only the price you pay for the flowers. The repurposed item will be free, and you are looking at only $15-$30 per plant.

9. Window Boxes

window box flower arrangement picture

Window boxes can bring new life to a drab area of the house. A window box is an easy installation that will provide immediate color and vibrant charm to the landscape. If the window shows wear and tear, this cost-effective tool can also hide these flaws. Window boxes are also an easy DIY project, saving you and your business in the long run.

Convincing your clients on a window box is easy. A window box will provide the insider dwellers to view their favorite flower beds from the comfort of their own homes.

You can build a window box from a collection of lumber wood, brackets, and screws. A 6-8-foot piece of lumber will be anywhere between $5-$20. Then, the plants will cost between $10-$100 to complete the project. Lastly, you can paint the window box to make sure it complements the color of the house.

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10. Organize the Landscaping Better Through Edging and Dividers

Use edging to add some order

Sometimes the best cost-saving landscaping strategies involve enhancing the plants and flowers you already have. Oftentimes, the existing elements can spill over and make the landscaping look tired and messy. Mulch may run onto the grass, trees might look neglected, and flower beds could look a little rough.

Edging is the perfect solution to help maintain your mulch, eliminate the chance of erosion, and make your landscaping pop. You can buy edging in a variety of materials like brick, concrete, stone, metal, logs, recyclable materials, and wood.

While this might not be the most cost-effective item on the list, it can be an excellent solution for a client that needs to take their landscaping to a whole new level. The edging can cost anywhere between $100-$500, depending on the size of the yard.

11. Dig into the Beach Pebbles

naturally polished white rock pebbles background stock photo picture

If you work with clients who live on a lake or love the sea, pebbles would be an aesthetic, cost-effective way to enhance the lawn. Not only are pebbles budget-friendly, but they will fill the gaps in the flagstones. If the home has a stone walkway already, the beach pebbles are the ideal solution.

This project can do an excellent job of making your plants grow in the rock garden. It starts by laying out cheaper landscape fabric and then a collection of pebbles. If you want to build a bonus garden path, you can buy smaller pebbles. The most important thing to remember here is to purchase additional edging. You want to make sure the landscaping is organized and does not spill over.

For a cost, beach pebbles usually go for $1 per pound, plus any money spent for fabric and edging.

12. Add Larger Rocks to an Already-Existing Rock Garden

closeup of a large stone with a juniper tree in the garden selective picture

You can also build the ultimate alpine garden or rockery for a reasonable price! You can showcase differing boulders, stones, river rocks, and pebbles for aesthetic landscaping. There are also many shapes, sizes, and color choices to choose from. Depending on the color of the house, you can go with brown or gray rocks.

Rock gardens will add diversity to the landscape while establishing a pretty contrast from the rest of the shrubs, trees, plants, and greenery. Not only do the gardens require little maintenance, but they are also resistant to droughts. Clients will love this because they will not need to spend much time or money, later on, to take care of the garden.

There are several ways to find free rocks, but this project will cost anywhere between $460-$1000. Depending on the type and size of stone, rock, or boulder you choose.

13. Vertical Gardens

vertical garden decoration tree planting in black plastic flower pot picture

The vertical garden is an effective strategy for someone with a tight budget and a small backyard. Not only will this landscape design save money and greens, but it will also provide a unique aesthetic to the yard. The vertical garden will also save space for the rest of the yard while taking little time to set up.

There are many plant types you can use for this project, but the best options are ferns, succulents, hostas, onions, tomatoes, garlic, bromeliads, peppers, and cucumbers. You can also use PVC piping or aluminum piping to get the frames. You will also need to stretch a cheaper fabric (with pockets) across the frame.

Depending on your current materials, desired size, and plants, the cost will be anywhere between $20-$120.

14. Use Old Watering Cans

window with two potted trees with tin watering can in Milan in Lombardy Italy

Old watering cans are a unique, cost-effective way to give your plants a place to bloom. Your clients might have old watering cans themselves, but you could also buy them yourselves. Several different colors and designs can add a warm feeling to the landscape. You can fill them with beautiful flowers while placing the cans around the garden and front of the house porch steps.

Old watering cans are recycling-friendly and will win over the hearts of homeowners. You can also place them on the window sills to call attention to beautiful shutters or housing exteriors. It is also fun to mix flower colors with the house color and watering can design.

The flowers will be the only major purchase here unless no one has a watering can already. Therefore, you are looking at around $10-$30 to complete this project.

15. Deploy a Line of Lanterns

night view of flowerbed with flowers illuminated by energysaving picture

If you want to preserve your lawn’s beauty after the sun sets, then a lantern line is the perfect solution. Curb appeal will go through the roof when you purchase low-cost lamps. The lamps will not only offer light for the outdoor space, but they will also enable the family to enjoy time outside. For safety reasons, lamps can help light the walkway for visitors.

The types of lamps you want to use will be sold in bunches or bundles. A group of 6-10 lamps could cost anywhere between $25-$100. You will also need to factor in the electrical costs or partner with an electrician.


As you can see, even though there are impressive ideas for curb appeal, there are several inexpensive landscaping ideas to enhance the look of the yard. Whether you want to keep it simple with a DIY flower bed or go big with a rock garden, the options are endless. To recap, here are the 15 budget front yard landscaping ideas to improve your yard:

  • A simple walkway to highlight certain areas of the garden
  • Mulch to help the garden retain moisture
  • Perennials for a long-term, cost-effective solution
  • Saplings for towering, breathtaking beauty
  • Flower Beds around mailboxes and lamp posts
  • Elevated garden beds to keep out the pests
  • String lights for evening beauty
  • Household planter solutions
  • Window boxes
  • Edging and dividers for better organization
  • Beach pebble garden
  • Larger rocks
  • Vertical gardens for limited space
  • Old watering cans
  • Line of lanterns

Start Using Landscaping Software!

RealGreen’s landscaping business software helps you run your business more efficiently with features such as scheduling, dispatching, reporting, and more.

Hosam Sayed is a Product Marketing Manager at WorkWave with extensive knowledge of B2B product and marketing positioning. When not in front of his computer, he can be found spending time with his family, enjoying outdoor activities, and working on perfecting the art of landscaping.