There is no cheap easy way to get a beautiful landscape without digging. If something was cheap, fast, easy, and good, everyone would have it. And if everyone could easily have it, no one would really WANT it. So go ahead and dig.
It doesn't matter what backyard landscape improvement project you choose. You will need to dig. Planting trees, bushes, or shrubs? You need a shovel. Installing or removing boulders- You need a shovel. Digging is the common denominator in nearly every landscaping project.
After I explain this, people's next question is usually on the order of:
"Well, do you have something I can just lay on the ground? I don't want to dig!"
Sorry. Despite what some may say or sell you, you will have to dig. Get out the old shovel and pop some ibuprofen. You going to dig! If you plan on adding hardscapes, you will have to shovel rocks - TONS of rocks! And that is just the beginning. After the tons of rocks, we are going to move TONS OF BLOCKS! That is right, good old fashioned hard work using that fibrous stuff wrapped around those old bones of yours.
Still reading? I haven't scared you away? In that case, pat yourself on the back! You are ready to do some hardscaping! If you are weary just reading this, take comfort in the fact that you move these tons in small manageable increments. Fortunately, a shovel load of rocks isn't terribly heavy. But, if you are totally scared or incapable of shoveling, you may want to hire a professional. Maybe you have a professional, but you want to be sure they are doing the job right. Congratulation! You are in the right place to learn how to install hardscape and landscape features.
"I'm not scared; I'm ready to dig."
Great! But before you grab your shovel and wreak havoc on the earth, you have a plan, right? The first real step in a creating an amazing outdoor space is planning. You can almost never plan too much. You don't want to spend more time and money moving something you already installed due to poor planning. So make sure you plan. I am going to assume that you have a solid plan. Otherwise you can find outdoor project planning tips here. Want to learn how to design your hardscape project for a great outcome, check out my article: 5 Steps to Designing YOUR Dream Patio