Granny Flat Landscaping Guide

Granny Flat Landscaping – An Overlooked Expense

Do you want to make the outside of your new granny flat look great? Get it built by a quality builder who provides great inclusions. This includes quality down-lights, a big eaves (450mm+) , large fascia and other quality external fixtures. We’ve found over the years that it’s certainly the little things that count the most – and landscaping is no exception.

Want to make the outside of your new granny flat look truly exceptional? Invest in some landscaping! All too often we see investors neglecting to install even basic turf to their backyard cabin. We think this is an investment mistake. Why? Because tenants feel proud about a good looking property and they make efforts to preserve it. Recent studies show that even in the lowest socioeconomic areas, tenants in better quality housing take care of it more than those in more run-down premises. Landscaping specifically helps to make a home look and feel well-kept, so it’s an investment in your properties future health.

granny flat landscaping

granny flat landscaping


Quality Landscaping Needn’t Cost the Earth

We’ve built over 250 quality granny flats in the last two years, so we know a thing or two about what looks good and how much it costs. Quality landscaping need not cost you the Earth and it doesn’t have to involve thousands of dollars in replanting and other garden features. All that most properties require is some top-soil and some turf. Below we list the varieties of turf available and where each variety is best used in granny flat yards.

Turfs Aint Turfs

There are three main varieties of turf available across Sydney and greater NSW – Buffalo, Kikuyu and Couch.

Sir Walter Buffalo Turf

This turf is native to the east coast of NSW so prefers the warm NSW climate. It will adapt to cooler areas but may take longer to adapt than other varieties. Buffalo is probably the most popular choice because of its overall performance in Australia’s varying conditions. It is easy to maintain and can resists drought, frost and best of all, it doesn’t need a lot of mowing. It performs well in both shady and sunny positions which is great for granny flats with sun deprived backyards. It’s also very weed resistant and for this reason it’s our favourite choice. We buy and use only Certified turf. Turfs ain’t turfs! It’s important that you get what you paid for because there are cheaper imitations out there, so buyer beware!


Kikuyu is a visually appealing and is very hardy, so it’s great for high-traffic areas like walkways and around door entries. Kikuyu needs more care than buffalo turf so despite its qualities, we dont generally recommend it for granny flat landscaping.


Couch comes in a few varieties and is generally very soft to the touch. We love the way it feels when you lay on it! Couch turf is used a lot on golf courses, cricket grounds and other sports fields. It has great drought tolerance too, but needs a sunny yard, which not all granny flat developments have available. It also costs more than other varieties.

So the winner (for us) is Buffalo! It resists weeds and requires less care. It does tend to grow sideways so a garden edger is needed once a year if concrete  or pathways intersect it.

Granny Flat Landscaping – So What’s It Going to Cost Me?

We have found that most properties cost around $2,500 to landscape after construction has been completed. This includes around sixty (60) square meters of clean (local) top-soil and buffalo turf. It also includes organic mulch in new H4-Treated Pine planter boxes. We also plant low water-use species as recommended by NSW Planning’s BASIX recommendations which are specific to your local government area. We’ve found that it’s important to plant the right vegetation for your local area and to group plants with similar water (and sunlight) needs together.

granny flat landscaped

granny flat landscaped

Your Granny Flat’s bumper sticker-  “Please Landscape Me!”

We really feel that in combination with innovative design and smart siting, a properly landscaped granny flat will attract quality tenants and make your neighbours love your new work as well. It also needn’t cost you an arm and a leg. Just ask us about landscaping as part of your new granny flat build. We’ll be more that happy to provide landscaping at cost to you. That’s right, at cost.  We don”t want to make a profit from landscaping – we just want your new granny flat to look as good on the outside as it does on the inside!

Warmest Regards,

Serge Panayi – Granny Flats Sydney (NSW) Pty Ltd

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