Goodbye Grass: 7 Inspiring Ideas for a "No Mow" Backyard

Americans love our lawns but let's face it: Creating a perfectly manicured yard is time-consuming. Just think about all the weekend hours you've spent cutting, watering, fertilizing, and weeding the grass. And even after all that hard work, it may still not be perfect. But we've got a little landscaping secret for you. Ditching the lawn doesn't mean giving up on your space. In fact, some of the most luxurious, green and well-designed yards don't have a single blade of grass. So what are you waiting for? Click through to find incredible no-mow ideas that could forever change your outlook—and your lawn.

  1. A Potted Garden

    Container Garden

    What's a flat, manicured lawn next to an exciting and colorful container garden? Trade in your lawn mower and for a simple spade and watering can. Caring for a container garden is a cinch, and the options for plantings are endless. Be sure to position your colorful planters throughout the yard for welcoming cheer and color.

    Related: 6 Pro Tips for Successful Container Gardening

  2. Tropical Canopy

    Tropical Backyard

    Transform your flat landscape into a vertical oasis with trees that offer privacy and shade. Many trees will take years to mature to their full height so if you'd rather not wait, consider fully grown dwarf varieties of palms or evergreens—even large potted rubber trees or ficus plants. Whatever you choose, remember to check your hardiness zone before planting.

    Related: 11 Ideas for Better Backyard Privacy

  3. Raise Your Yard to the Next Level

    Raised Planter Boxes

    Converting a lawn into a garden with raised planters provides a variety of benefits. Because you're not planting directly into the ground, you'll reduce the need to weed and till. They require less water than container gardens and make harvesting vegetables a snap. They’re not just for vegetables, though. Perennials, annuals and ornamental grasses do extremely well in raised beds.

    Related: Landscape Edging—10 Easy Ways to Set Your Garden Beds Apart

    Zillow Digs home in Paoli, PA

  4. Much About Mulch

    Ground Cover Mulch

    Organic mulches like cedar or pine bark chips can be used to replace grass quite easily for a rustic ground cover. Before you lay the mulch down, lay landscaping cloth on the bare soil to prevent weeds from growing to the surface. For dog owners, make sure to avoid Cocoa hull mulch—it’s lethal to pooches.

    Related: How To—Mulch Your Flower Beds chris riebschlager

  5. Fake It

    Artificial Lawn

    If you’ve been dreaming about a lush, green lawn but can't bear to uproot another dandelion, then artificial turf may be your perfect option. The new fake grass is stain-resistant and offers excellent drainage. The best part is that it will always be green—but without the maintenance.

    Related: The Invincible Yard—12 Ideas for Lazy Landscaping

    Zillow Digs home in San Clemente, CA

  6. Put in a Patio

    Concrete Patio

    Turn your backyard into a concrete jungle with a lovely new patio. Stamped concrete, patio pavers, or natural stone will create a stunning and functional space. Surround the perimeter with lush ornamental grasses and colorful flowers. Or brighten the space with a few well-placed containers brimming with greenery. You won't even miss the lawn.

    Related: Cement Your Place in DIY History with These 9 Easy Concrete Projects / via lovemaegan

  7. Keep It Simple

    Ground Cover

    For some, a rainbow of blooms is a crowning achievement in the garden, but for others, simplicity is perfection. If no-nonsense greenery is your idea of great design, then replace the lawn with a low-growing perennial like creeping Jenny or thyme. Like grass, these ground covers can stand up to foot traffic but with the added advantage of being mow-free. Go ahead and celebrate. / via patrickstandish

  8. Go Green

    Go Green

    Not quite ready to give up grass? Then you’ll want to grab these supplies to help maintain a lush lawn.

  9. See the House of the Week


    Discover and admire beautiful and innovative home architecture, from grand Victorians to quaint cabins and all the styles in between. Take a look at the latest images and inspiration!