Cheap way to cover dirt in backyard

Dirt in the backyard ruins the aesthetics of your space. Most homeowners are continually looking for ways to cover up this dirt and add some value to their space. If you are one of them, leave your worries behind. I’ve got some great ideas for you; of course, without breaking the bank. So, this article is all about some of the cheapest ways to cover dirt in your backyard. Below, I’ve listed eleven ways to cover up the dirt in your backyard so that it looks amazing. At least one of these should work for your yard.

not all ground covers

Table of Contents

11 cheapest ways to cover up dirt in your backyard

1. Concrete

You can cover up your backyard dirt with concrete. Concrete happens to be a great choice not just because it covers up dirt effectively but also because it allows you to make the space usable. You can turn your backyard into a space for outdoor activities for the entire family.

There are endless options for what you can possibly do with that area once you cover it up with concrete. You can place furniture and make it a place for evening tea and snacks. You could even think of turning it into a kids’ play area or a basketball court.

If you have prior experience and interest in DIY projects, I recommend you mix your own concrete and do the entire job yourself. Watching videos on how to do this will help you in the process and you’ll certainly save a few hundred dollars when you do it on your own.

paver stone patio

2. Organic Mulch

Using organic mulch is a natural way to cover up the dirt in your backyard. Mulch is a great option because it improves soil quality, prevents weeds from developing, reduces water needs, and increases pest resistance. Above all, it’s the cheapest option to cover up dirt in your backyard.

What can you use as organic mulch?

You can use hay, straw, wood chips, shredded leaves, or pine needles. Some of the most important types include:

  • Straw: Straw not only covers dirt but is also a great option for growing vegetables and other plants in your garden. It can be easily cleaned, decomposes relatively slowly, and is ideal for retaining moisture in the soil.
  • Deck chips: Deck chips are the most popular type of organic mulch as they are cheap and decorative. Wood chips are generally dyed brown, red, or black to match your garden décor.
  • Shredded leaves: This is free mulch you can get by collecting the fallen leaves around your yard. While shredded leaves may not last long, you can replace them with a new set as often as you can.
ground cover

3. Set up a garden

Another cheap way to cover dirt in your backyard is by setting up a garden with free and cheap plants. You can find plants that are on sale at a nearby nursery. You may even come across something for free. Find out what plants you can get for a low cost in the nearby nurseries. There are other ideas as well. You can sow vegetable seeds and grow a vegetable garden.

What’s more, you can propagate new plants from the existing ones. Actually, it’s easier than you think. There are numerous videos on how you can set up a garden from scratch. Do some research and find out what plants are easy to grow in your soil and buy some seeds. All of these are low-cost ideas. Put in some effort and you may definitely be the proud owner of a luscious garden.

dirt yard

4. Creepers

Creepers grow very close to the ground and hence, can cover up the dirt in the backyard in no time. You can buy creepers that grow well in your backyard soil. They are not expensive and can make an ideal replacement for the dirt with some beautiful green flowering vines.

5. Gravel

Covering the exposed dirt with gravel is a great idea because it is highly durable. All you need to do is lay out the gravel and stop worrying about the mess in your backyard. It’s long-lasting and doesn’t require any maintenance down the road. Laying out gravel is helpful if you are not going to use that area much. Ultimately, it serves the purpose of covering up the dirt in your yard. It is inexpensive as well.

square foot gravel

6. Build a Deck

Building a deck is an effective way to cover up the exposed dirt in the backyard. It can turn out to be a fun project when you do it with family or friends. While building a deck may seem like a costly affair, it doesn’t have to be if you have the necessary materials and you do it yourself or with the help of family and friends without hiring a professional to do it for you.

A deck will offer you massive space you can utilise for different purposes. You can place furniture, a grill or barbeque, and even have a room for storage beneath it.

7. Artificial grass

Covering the dirt in your yard with artificial grass is another wonderful idea. Of course, installing artificial grass is not too cheap, but maintaining it is not that expensive. There are ways to cut down on costs when you plan to install artificial grass in your backyard.

You can buy fake grass from wholesalers. You can certainly get it for half the price. Moreover, you can consider DIY installation and save money on hiring someone to do the job for you. There is no reason why you wouldn’t want to install fake grass in your backyard. Besides elevating the aesthetics of your space, it is quite inexpensive to maintain as well.

artificial grass for dirt

8. Recycled bricks and pavers

How about covering up the dirt in your yard using recycled bricks or pavers from old driveways and pavements? It will transform your yard into an environment-friendly space for your family and friends. You could add more value to it with some furniture, potted plants, or a patio umbrella.

9. Build a water pond

That sounds like a dream come true! Have you ever wanted a small pond in your backyard but never thought you could build one? Well, building a water pond is a fantastic idea to cover up dirt in your backyard and make your space magical. While it’s not cheap, if you do it as a DIY project, it won’t cost you much.

There are numerous DIY videos available that can guide you through the process of building a beautiful pond in your backyard. I’m sure you will enjoy the paradise you created in your yard.

garden pond

10. Natural grass

If you put in a little effort, you can plant natural grass to cover up the dirt in the backyard. While it initially takes sufficient knowledge and care to plant grass in your yard properly, it offers a great number of advantages for your space. It produces a large amount of oxygen and is a healthy option for the environment you live in.

Besides, it is extremely hygienic as it purifies the air and the fresh smell is a treat to your senses. What’s more, a short barefoot walk on natural grass can be an awesome stress buster! When you maintain the natural grass properly, it will improve the quality of your home and landscape.

11. Backyard picnic

One of the easiest and best ways to cover the dirty mess in your backyard is to build a picnic area where you can spend time with your family and friends. You can treat it like a campsite and place a picnic table with a vibrant tablecloth. You can think outside the box and decorate the space according to your taste and preferences – build an outdoor bar, put a keg together, or install an outdoor kitchen. The sky is the limit for your fun ideas and creativity here. 

picnic in yard


If you have been putting off cleaning your backyard because you are busy or concerned about cost, know that there are now several affordable options available to you, some of which were discussed above. These include:

  • Covering with concrete
  • Using artificial grass
  • Building a water pond
  • Using creepers, organic mulch, or gravel

Find out which one will best suit your interests and budget, and start making the backyard transformation right away. Trust me, it will turn out to be a fun activity that will actually pay off later.

picnic in yard
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Oliver Wright
Oliver Wright

I hope you enjoy reading some of the content and ideas from this site, I tend to share articles and product reviews on a daily basis, so be rest assured… you won’t run out of things to read!

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