Are you looking to save money on fencing, turfing, lawn mowing and other gardening jobs? Follow our tips to keep costs down when your taking care of your garden.

Fencing

Job description: erecting wood fencing to either replace an existing fence or create a new boundary.

What adds expense?

'This type of work is usually quoted for at the outset, but difficult excavation of old, rotten posts set in over-engineered concrete holes could add time and cost, says Phil Coombes from Buckinghamshire-based Weedgone Garden Maintenance Ltd.

How can I make it cheaper?

'Clearing an old line of fencing yourself can reduce the cost considerably,' Phil advised. 'Disposal of waste adds costs to the job too, so clear green waste and wood debris yourself if possible.' Ensure the timber used is pressure and tanalised wood with a guaranteed lifetime of over 15 years, otherwise it will rot quickly.

See more advice in our article with all you need to know about garden fencing.

Turfing

Job description: re-laying of the lawn in a garden.

What adds expense?

Even after a gardener has quoted for the turfing job, surprises can happen. 'Additional costs might arise if old tree trunks need to be taken out, for example, and the hole left behind far exceeds the quantity of topsoil approved for bringing in,' Phil explained. 

How can I make it cheaper?

'If the new turf is to replace old lawn, then lift the old grass yourself,' Phil suggested. 'Alternatively, instead of new, instant turf, consider grass seed instead.' Make sure the new turf is seed-grown and not bought in and cut from a meadow full of weeds.

Grass cutting

Job description: garden lawn mowing and strimming.

What adds expense?

'A large lawn means there will be a lot of cut grass clippings to take away after each visit, and this adds to the total cost of the job,' Phil advised.

How can I make it cheaper?

Phil recommended getting your gardener to leave the cut grass at your property – either in the green waste recycling bin or on a compost heap. 

A gardener worth his salt won’t be mowing grass when there’s a frost on the lawn. Follow our tips to find the perfect gardener for you.

Pressure washing

Job description: jet washing block paving, decking or patios.

What adds expense?

'An hourly charge usually costs more for a pressure washing job,' Phil told us. Ensure you get a fixed price quote to avoid unexpected expense.

How can I make it cheaper?

'Make sure that the contractor has their own equipment,' Phil said. 'Otherwise you will be paying for the pressure washer rental on top of the labour.'

Phil's final tip is: 'If you want a quick solution to a weed problem on drives, make sure the contractor uses a contact herbicide. Also, ask about weed killers that have a residual herbicide included which caps the surface. These significantly reduce the number of germinating weed seeds popping up again.'

If pressure washing decking yourself, the jet washer should not be used too near to the wood, otherwise it will start to splinter. All equipment comes with variable jets to decrease the water flow rate.

Weed killing

Job description: use of herbicides to eradicate invasive weeds in the garden.

What adds expense?

If a single application is not enough due to the strength of the weeds, it may be necessary to apply a second or even third application to control the weeds. 'The costs can can mount up with extra applications,' said Phil.

How can I make it cheaper?

Phil recommends discussing the possibility of a year-round weed killing program, whether it be on lawns or hard standing areas such as paths, block paving or gravel drives from the outset of a job. 'This will almost certainly work out cheaper in the long run,' advised Phil.

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