Need help with awful rental house landscaping

chinchette(9b)June 29, 2012

I have to fix up this investment property right away and get a tenant. There will be a lot of pressure washing and painting. I don't know what to do with the awful state of the yard. I would like to plant some hardy bushes that don't require much maintenance. The main problem is that the yard has become just sand and weeds. Help! What would you do?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tinael01(10A)

I have 12 houses just like this one and I don't do anything but cut the grass and keep the trees safely trimmed. We maintain the houses well and if something breaks we fix it, the paint is nice, etc. but the yard.....no. They don't take care of it and I don't plant.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2012 at 8:06PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chinchette(9b)

Its true that its difficult to get renters to take care of yards. This one has a sprinkler system, but the tenant turned it off. There is no grass at all. I think it will be hard to rent for what it is really worth, considering the neighborhood and the inside, due to the yard. Its in zone 9b

    Bookmark   June 29, 2012 at 8:47PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
statenislandpalm7a(7a)

I would recommend some drought tolerant landscaping with gravel as mulch. I would recommend a pindo palm, yuccas, cactus. etc.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2012 at 10:31PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tinael01(10A)

Since thre are sprinklers go get bahia grass seed and get the yard going. Then put some walter's vibernium or silver buttonwood bushes or something native in front of the windows. There are other natives available too that would work, so you can go to a nursery and ask them to show you. Natives, once established, have a better chance of surviving a tenant. Pick something whats roots won't grow into the house masonry causing problems later. Good Luck!

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 8:35AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
amberroses(10a)

Muhly grass is pretty and drought tolerant.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 9:03AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
writersblock

Indian hawthorne is another one that's pretty self-sufficient once it gets going.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 9:30AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chinchette(9b)

I really think that the hawthorn and vibernium etc will work out and survive even if the renter doesn't water. I have those growing elsewhere with no water. However, its the presentation of the lawn that I am concerned with. I was wondering if I should greatly expand the beds and put things in that survive anything, and then do a small amount of grass.

Or... I could do a section of that low jasmine ground cover. But I guess what I am wondering is about the grass area. What do I do to get that going? Will seed be fast enough? I only have a couple of weeks before I want to show it.

Any ideas on how to make a quick change for presentation of a lawn that has gone to sand?

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 11:18AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Michael AKA Leekle2ManE - Zone 9a - Lady Lake

I believe the biggest suggestion for the quickest change is 'sod'. But this is purely based on my observations of other posts/articles dealing with "need to pretty up my lawn fast..."

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 11:53AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tinael01(10A)

Winter rye won't do well this time of year I don't think...but you can google it. That's the fasted grass to grow and be green. If you mix it with Bahia the Bahia can take over later. I really think unless you sod, which is not cost effective for a rental as tenants will let the sod die, you are really out of luck for the lawn in the middle of summer. I wish I had better news. You can try the extension service info on lawns...maybe they know a trick. They can definately help you with xeriscaping.

Here is a link that might be useful: florida extension landscaping xeriscaping

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 12:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chinchette(9b)

How about a ground cover instead of sod?

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 1:11PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
slopfrog

Bahia seed and water the heck out of it for a Month until it gets going. Tell the tenant to keep up on watering the lawn... They probably will for the first month before they get lazy. If the irrigation system is on city water, you can forget it... No tenant will pay that bill and I don't blame them.

For bushes, look what grows well on the road medians (not irrigated by reclaimed water.) Firebush, plumbago, crown of thorns, and Mexican petunia do well here and dont need much care. Use a lot of gravel in the beds. Drainfield rock doesn't look wonderful but it's OK and damn cheap.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 2:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tomncath(St Pete Z10a Heat 10)

Or... I could do a section of that low jasmine ground cover.

That's what I was thinking, put in dwarf Asiatic jasmine plants 3 feet apart and have a dump truck load of mulch delivered to fill in around the plants...does well in sun or shade with very little water.

Tom

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 2:39PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ClassicLady

I also own rental property. You can replace the grass, then purchase a few plants to liven up the front of house. Just enough to get the place looking good and rented. I have a neighbor at a duplex I own who I pay to cut the grass, twice May to September, and once the rest of the months. Tenants don't want to have the expense of the water. You could offer a tenant a discount to maintain yard. Put it in the lease as an addendum, and if they don't they lose the discount. I offer a $25.00 discount to get my rent before or by the date the rent is due. It works!

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 3:27PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chinchette(9b)

Okay, this is a good solution, what Tom said. I will get the dump load of mulch and do the Jasmine in one section, and other landscape plants in the other sections. As per what Classic Lady said, I can have a gardner trim back the jasmine in the summer months and keep it contained in certain areas.

This house is actually on well water, and even with that, the tenant turned it off.

Now I need some advice on the back yard. It is very big and all sand at this point. I can't do the Jasmine there. Bahia seed there?

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 4:49PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chinchette(9b)

Okay, this is a good solution, what Tom said. I will get the dump load of mulch and do the Jasmine in one section, and other landscape plants in the other sections. As per what Classic Lady said, I can have a gardner trim back the jasmine in the summer months and keep it contained in certain areas.

This house is actually on well water, and even with that, the tenant turned it off.

Now I need some advice on the back yard. It is very big and all sand at this point. I can't do the Jasmine there. Bahia seed there?

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 5:02PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
getting back to the garden...
Got back from Jamaica last night, had a great time!...
whgille
African Irises just bloomed; they're pretty
The plants bloomed nine mos after being stuck in the...
stewbrew FL_10b
Any Plant Sales?
I live in the Holiday Florida area and I went to a...
juttz
So, What Do YOU Do About Coons And Possums?
I just sent three of them to that big veggie garden...
brute
Mexican Flame Vine
It is conceivable that I've asked this question here...
wisconsitom
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™