low maintenance front yard in rental property
We own a property with a relatively small front yard, but we are having major issues trying to get our tenants to even mow the are, to the extent where we've even had complaints from the HOA. We're just sick and tired of dealing with it, and short of simply getting a cement truck to come along and dump a load of concrete in the area, we'd like to eliminate the lawn if possible and lay down something in place that will make it a bit easier to do the upkeep. The area is about 30' x 35', bordered to the front and one side by a sidewalk and driveway, and on the other and at back by shrubs. We've thought about Xeriscaping the area with gravel, even looked at the notion of maybe creating a little Japanese stone garden, but the problem is that there's a slope at the front, and I think gravel needs a level base to work effectively. Maybe I build it up by a couple of feet at the front with a small retaining wall to level everything out?
Anyone have any suggestions or thoughts on what we could do - other than get new tenants!