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Homeowner seeks to repurpose yard space formerly overrun by invasive trees: 'Nature ran its course'

"It's an awkward spot to mow and makes a mess."

"It's an awkward spot to mow and makes a mess."

Photo Credit: iStock

If you have only a small patch of grass in your backyard, you may not see much of a reason to keep mowing every week or two. 

That's exactly what one Redditor was thinking when they asked the r/landscaping Reddit community for advice on repurposing an oddly shaped area of grass in their backyard. 

The photo posted by the OP shows a compact backyard area, with stone outdoor flooring on the left and a rather dry-looking patch of grass on the right, separated by a retaining wall. 

"This area used to have 4 invasive trees that we removed 2 years ago. Since then, nature ran its course and grass just began to grow. It's an awkward spot to mow and makes a mess. Thinking ahead we don't want to be mowing this area when the clothesline is in place," they explained in the caption, adding that they wanted some "low-maintenance" ideas for the space. 

"It's an awkward spot to mow and makes a mess."
Photo Credit: Reddit

Many commenters were quick to suggest one of the most low-maintenance, cheap alternatives to grass lawns out there: native lawns

These types of natural lawns save time and money on lawn maintenance since they only need mowing three or four times per year, according to Architectural Digest

"Rewilding" your yard can also help conserve water and reduce your water bills since native, non-invasive plants are already adapted to the local climate and have more efficient root systems, according to Todd Haiman Landscape Design

Not to mention, pollinators like bees and butterflies will love your lawn because they thrive in a healthy ecosystem with diverse plants and flowers. Humans also benefit from having more pollinators around since one out of every three bites of food we eat exists because of them. 

To replace a water-guzzling traditional lawn with something more sustainable, try planting drought-tolerant clover or buffalo grass. You can also check the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map to determine what plants will thrive in your area.

Commenters in the landscaping thread were happy to share their ideas, with one writing, "Xeriscape, put down a weed barrier then put in plants that don't require a lot of water and can get by with the lighting conditions of this area. If it were mine I'd just go gravel base with a few native shrubs to provide color. If you want a climber like a clematis on the fence that would be nice."

"[Five] big rocks in the back corner. Alpine plants and succulents. Raise soil 3 inches around rocks. Undyed wood mulch," another said.

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