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Your Garden Loves You

It responds really well to the constraints of your budget.
It doesn't like huge outlays all at once.
It thrives on regular, small amounts of attention. (Just like your kids)

I had a client who had spent over $10,000 on a landscaper and was most upset when the garden started to fail after a few months. With weekly love and tenderness it started to thrive again.
I don't know about you but MY budget can't withstand a $10,000 outlay, but I can stretch to a dollar or so a week for a bag of steer manure. Just spread it thinly anywhere in your garden.
Your budget can run to a couple of bags of flower seeds new and then. Go out now, buy some, prepare some soil (With your steer manure and maybe some peat moss as well) sow your seeds. They WANT to grow, water them regularly and have a beautiful flower garden cheaply.

Natural Gardening

Soil enhanced with natural organic material grows better plants. AND! --- AND!!! it is cheaper.
You can often get natural manure free from someone who keeps horses.
Landscapers will want you to buy expensive packaged soils, chemicals and additives and will try to scare you with stories of weed seeds in untreated horse manure.
But I'll let you into a secret --------- Shhhh! don't tell anyone. "If you don't use horse manure you're still gonna have to pull weeds!!!"
If you get your organic material cheaply then your soil will be soft and easy to work and the weeds will pull easily.

NEVER use poisons on your garden. Some weed killers have been linked with instances of lymphoma in pets. And insecticides will kill beneficial insects as well as the bad ones.
If you don't poison the good insects then they will take care of the bad ones.

Do you like flowers or mulch and gravel?
A good flower garden is cheaper to build and easier an cheaper to maintain than either gravel or mulch.

You still have to weed gravel and mulch. You know! you've tried! and it's a right pain, that's why you put the stuff down in the first place.

But a flower garden is a pleasure to work in, and a pleasure to look at.
The weeds are easy to pull because the soil is soft.