You Needn’t Break Your Back With These Garden Hacks

Mar 19 2019
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After that winter you wouldn’t believe my Facebook feed of fellow Minnesotan’s rejoicing that we actually made it to spring! It really felt like it was touch and go there for awhile! But, we did, we made it and I cannot WAIT to get dirty again. I joked with my mom that as soon as I see a patch of dry dirt and grass I’m going roll around in it like my horses!

And no one would blame me lol. There’s going to be a lot of people going outside just to go outside, just because we can! I’m having a garden this year and I just can’t wait!

A peonies gallery of my gorgeous peony blooms, pink, white, magenta and other perennial flowers that my Grandma planted over the last fifty years!
(This is a contributed post, for more information about my compensation please read my disclosure policy)

Many of us imagine that any garden project will come complete with a whole load of backbreaking work. We’re talking digging dry ground, and lugging heavy supplies all over the place. You can’t imagine finishing a day outside without at least a few aches and pains to your name.

That’s the main reason why you’d rather do anything than finally get your outside space the way you’d like it. Really, who needs the hassle? You can think of nothing worse than slaving away all day and having to wait until you even see results.

Forget that for a laugh. You would rather let your outside space run riot than face such thankless and back-breaking work.

But, what if we were to tell you that you’ve got gardening all wrong? We know what you’re thinking; how can the rest of the world be wrong about this simple fact? You’ve probably even got some past garden scars to use against us here.

But, as with anything around the home, we would argue that gardening can be as tricky as you want it to be.

Obviously, the easiest option here would be to hire professionals to take care of your outside space for you. But, the trouble with trusting an outside company to take care of your outsides is the cost. Not to mention that they can’t get the space how YOU would like it.

We’d call that a flaw given it’s your yard!

So, what would be the second easiest option here? Not needing to dig, for one, and simplifying the tasks which would break your back in the first place. Agreed? Good. Now, keep reading to find out about a few of the garden hacks you could start right now without once needing to break your back.

The no-dig border

Usually, flower bed borders are a bit of a pain in the backside. More often than not, they need a fair amount of that awful digging which we’ve promised to help you avoid. They involve days of planning and heavy work.

And, that only gets harder if your ground is dry to boot. Before you know, you’ll want to forget all about the poxy border and put your flower displays back how they were. You can bet that your arms and back will sting plenty the day after you dig a traditional border.

But, it doesn’t have to be that way. In truth, there’s no reason why you can’t just opt for a no-dig border to solve this problem. These are magic solutions, and the clue as to why is in the title. They don’t need any digging.

Not even the tiniest bit! In theory, you should be able to complete this entire project without once putting your body under strain.

The main secret to success here is a little thing called no-dig edging. This is plastic edging which provides you with a straight and steady edge, even when you don’t dig any.

By securing this with metal spikes and using concrete, you can create a secure border base above land. Finish off with a few pretty bricks of your choice, and you’ve got a raised flower border, all while keeping that spade firmly shut in the shed.

That’s what we call a magic garden solution!

The pondless water feature

We’re all agreed that water features can transform our gardens, right? They have the power to brighten a basic space. Not to mention that the sound alone can turn your outside into a tranquil scene of peace.

The trouble is that most water features need a pond as their base. And, you can bet you’re going to break your back while doing one of those yourself.

Again, though, all need not be as it seems. That’s because there’s a fantastic alternative available in the form of the pondless water feature. Yes, you did read that right. There are now plenty of options to choose from which you can set up right in your garden as it stands.

By opting for something like these pondless waterfall kits, you can even make sure that all the pieces come in one easy-to-use package.

Or, you could go all out by doing the whole thing yourself and still complete the project in a weekend. Admittedly, there may still be some small digging involved here, as you need a drainage system.

If you’re against any work of that kind, though, you could always opt for a feature which stands in a pot or has its own basin. You can buy these as they are in a shop, and enjoy the trickle of water in your garden without barely lifting a figure.

The floating flowers

As amazing as they look, flower beds can be a chore. You have to dig them over, clear them out, and replant them every time the spring season rolls around.

Even a seemingly simple task here could see you on your hands and knees, twisting and bending in all manner of ways. And, guess what? That could leave you sore in the aftermath. What won’t cause damage like this is if you opt for floating flowers.

These are flower displays which sit above ground instead of within flower beds. There are a few different ways you can make this work you for. You may want to get specific flower troughs to attach to your garden fence.

You would then just need to fill these with soil and compost at waist height to ensure your ease. Or, you may want to take the ease of this even further.

roughs like these could be heavy, after all, and you may have something appropriate at home already. Why not hang your flower displays in spare colanders from the kitchen?

This would save you having to lug anything heavy back from the shop. Not to mention that those holes are ideal for plant drainage.

You could even drill two holes in some old tins, and use these as hanging planters instead. Either way; you wouldn’t need to get down on the ground and do your back in with options like these to hand.

The no-mow lawn

A post revealing my deck, my outside living space and living room, my 700 square foot dance floor, how I built it, designed it and finished it!

The chances are that mowing the lawn is, by far, the most time-consuming thing that you do in your backyard.

At least once a week, you have to wrestle that mower out of the shed. If you don’t hurt yourself doing that, you have to lean at an awkward angle while you push the pesky thing around. Before you know, you’ve got backache like no other again.

Of course, a sit on lawn mower may seem like a simple solution here, but again the price could put people off. Besides, a typical yard doesn’t warrant something of that size. Which leaves you looking at different options.

Admittedly, these do require a little more upfront work than our previous suggestions. Still, you can bet that they’ll be worthwhile for the time that they save you later. Take, for example, the artificial lawn.

These have been growing in popularity of late, and it’s easy to see why. Designs are now so realistic that few people would be able to tell the difference. Even better, this is the best easy-care yard anyone could hope for. You would need to get that spade out to dig out your existing turf, but it might not be as tough as you think to DIY this. Turf gone, you’d simply need to put a layer of builder’s sand in its place before laying your alternative. Voila; you’d never break your back mowing again.

If an artificial option doesn’t appeal, consider doing away with grass, or cutting back on how much you have to deal with.

Patio designs can look fantastic, and many modern gardens consist of these alone. By treating and cleaning them often, you can save ever having to get down on your hands and knees.

Again, the worst part of this would be digging up your turf in the first place. Of course, there would also be heavy patio stones, unless you opted for a graveled yard to save yourself that hassle, too.

If going totally to the stone side doesn’t appeal, you could still make use of patios. By splitting your garden, for example, you can reduce the grass you have. That could see you making use of a much easier to manage mower from now on. Even if you stuck with the one you’ve got, you would use it for such a short time that you can bet it wouldn’t break your back anymore.


There’s no denying that working outside can be tough.

With spring coming around, you may already be dreading those achy joints. But, as you can see, that needn’t be your reality anymore. All it takes is a little initial work and a whole load of creativity.

Before you know, you could enjoy time outside without having to worry about your lower back any longer.

(This is a contributed post, for more information about my compensation please read my disclosure policy)
You can’t imagine finishing a day outside without at least a few aches and pains to your name. But You Needn't Break Your Back With These Garden Hacks


  1. March 20, 2019 at 10:36 am

    A few other ideas- many people remove lots of thier Turf and replace it with perennial flower beds. We did, prettier, no mowing, use less water, attract needed bees. Ornamental grasses are a great choice too.

    • March 20, 2019 at 10:46 am

      Great idea Nancy, I dream of some day being able to turn over my whole yard and plant it in native blooming plants that don’t get too tall: clover, dendelions etc.

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