Smaller, less time-consuming projects range from beautifying the lawn to replacing a few fixtures.
Create a plan you’ll love for years with the help of these garden design tips. When it comes to transforming your back garden, no matter how big or tiny it is, we’ve put together a list of fantastic garden design ideas that can help you get the most out of your outdoor area, as well as increase the value of your house.
In the meanwhile, Andrew Kyte at The Chelsea Gardener advises that you first look at your garden as a whole: Determine the garden’s location, orientation, and aspect as much as possible. This has implications for both planting and the way you use your property.’
If you have a tiny garden, a long and narrow garden, a cottage garden, or a courtyard garden, you need to pay attention to when and where the sun shines on the various portions of the garden. Think about how you will use your garden – will you be planting and growing vegetables, sunbathing, eating alfresco, or simply settling down to enjoy a cup of tea on a warm morning?
- 1 1. Get Your Yard In Shape.
- 2 2. Make a Planting Strategy
- 3 3. Tree
- 4 4. The pavement is stunning.
- 5 5. Different tiers of difficulty
- 6 6. The Furniture
- 7 7. Make sure you’re aware of your own limits.
- 8 8. Zoning and Security measures
- 9 9. It’s time to adorn the fifth room!
- 10 10. Incorporate your decorations into the overall design.
- 11 11. A garden room can be built.
- 12 12. Walls that are constantly changing
- 13 13. Keep the lights in mind.
- 14 14. Solutions for limited space
- 15 15. A garden belonging to a household.
- 16 16. Wildlife should not be overlooked.
1. Get Your Yard In Shape.
What will you see in the garden through the window? Probably your grass. If it’s a powerful shape, it will set the rest of the garden in the appropriate direction. Consider using an oval, circle, square, or oblong form rather than a rectangle.
You’ll need the proper equipment to perform the task. According to PriceRunner’s analysts, since the epidemic, there has been an increase in searches for cutting-edge robotic lawn mowers (up 126%), as well as ride-on mowers (up 182%). The Flymo Easi Glide 300 Electric Mower has been the top-selling lawn mower for the year (April 2021).
‘If your grass is looking lackluster, consider the three fundamentals of sunshine, showers, and soil aeration,’ horticulture expert Stuart Thomas from online garden shop Primrose suggests for continuing lawn upkeep. Cut down branches to avoid overbearing the surrounding landscape. If the UK’s regular rain isn’t enough, water once a week in the early morning. Make several holes in your grass with a fork to aerate it. Do all of them and you’ll have a lush lawn in no time at all! Keep it mowed to a reasonable length.
2. Make a Planting Strategy
Beautiful, floral plants fill up the spaces created by structural plants. As a result, utilize evergreen bushes to mark the beginning and finish of each border. Box balls and giant evergreens, such as mahonia, can be used in larger areas.
Fill up the empty spaces with beautiful flowering plants. It’s best to limit your selection to no more than five or six distinct varieties, and then arrange them in recurring patterns to get a cohesive and harmonious look. Large enough to accommodate both tiny and taller plants, a border should have a depth of at least a meter.
You may create seating or dining spaces with low-planted beds and lines of planted-up troughs, such as with lavender or Mexican orange flower. As far as flexibility goes, containers enable you to shift them about as you see fit. As an evergreen trailing plant that blooms in the spring, ‘creeping rosemary’ is a perfect choice for edging pots, according to Tony Woods, general director of garden design firm Garden Club London.
Climbers can be used in the back of the border if you don’t have space for meter-deep planting beds. Clematis, an evergreen climbing plant, makes a stunning and colorful show as a climbing plant.
‘It’s really well-behaved, produces masses of white, waxy, fragrant blooms throughout the summer, and reacts well to being clipped back, so it’s excellent for planting behind a seating area where you don’t want plants hanging over and can enjoy the aroma,’ says Tony Woods of star jasmine.
Consider putting in some spring and early summer bulbs to get your garden off to a wonderful start in the spring and summer.
Are you concerned about the influence your garden has on the environment? The Samphire Landscape by Sue Townsend displays how you may construct a garden that helps the environment while still providing aesthetic appeal and texture. ‘
The coastal garden in Suffolk combines a diverse palette of drought-tolerant plants, including native seashore plants, grasses, and Mediterranean shrubs, all set amidst reclaimed York Stone pavers. The stone mulch used in the garden is also varied in size. Eryngiums, euphorbias, verbena, and thymus are some of the other plants that may be found in the garden. Permeable surfaces are essential for allowing rainwater to naturally seep into the earth.
Mature trees are a good place to start when designing a landscape. Additionally, they may be utilized as a support for shade sails, hammocks, or hanging lights and decorations, in addition to just blocking the sun.
If you live near a busy road, trees may assist reduce noise and air pollution as well as concealing an unappealing view. Aside from supplying pollen for insects and birds as well as turning airborne carbon dioxide into oxygen, they also help nature in other ways.
Multi-stem trees are becoming increasingly popular as a way to create an architectural spectacle with their exquisite canopies that lend themselves to tiered underplanting or provide a dramatic structural statement when planted alone. Multi-stem trees and soft planting create a deconstructed woodland feel in this front courtyard garden in Suffolk, as seen below by Caitlin McLauglin.
‘Trees are great for wildlife, as well as a source of carbon sequestration,’ he said. Additionally, they provide a framework and architecture for a garden, according to Sarah Squire, the chairwoman of Squire & Sons Garden Centres. Acers, cherry trees, and birches can be grown in any size or form of a garden, from a potted acer on a balcony to an enormous birch or whitebeam tree in a rear garden.’
4. The pavement is stunning.
If your pavement and the manner it is set to give a clear design direction for the entire garden, it is worth considering. French country style may be achieved by using grey or white stone laid in an asymmetrical arrangement; black or silver pavement spread out in a regular pattern is ideal for creating an understated backdrop; while golden stone laid out in a random pattern gives an English country vibe.
Looking for some motivation? A complex pavement arrangement of 10 interconnected circles in Butter Wakefield’s Ribbon Wheel garden, each one unique in form and size, was made using York cobblestones to join them. Created from limestone and York stone, the circular patterns are put out in a magnificent blend of setts and cobbles.
When planning your dream garden, it’s critical that you pay close attention to the smallest of details. Coordinate your plants and paving to create an eye-catching design. As an illustration:
- The combination of purple and white flowers with grey or white stone is beautiful.
- With vibrant colors like red, orange, and yellow, black and silver pavement looks stunning.
- Pinks, lavenders, and pale yellows go well with the golden pavement.
Michael Instead of jet cleaning the old faded paving, consider something fresh and interesting like large-format porcelain paving, says John McGarr, director and garden designer at Warnes McGarr & Co. No water is needed to clean porcelain since it doesn’t absorb any, therefore it takes significantly less pressure washing and effort to maintain over time.
There is no doubt that it is in your best interest to generate a flow of movement from your home to the garden. “You may blur the distinctions between the indoor and outdoor areas of a house by ensuring that pavement is level with your inside flooring,” says Michael.
5. Different tiers of difficulty
Is there more than one level to your garden? As an alternative to using stone stairs, you may achieve a seamless aesthetic by making the transition from one area to another smooth. Garden designer Helen Elks-Smith utilized grass treads to link the lower patio to the little sun terrace above, as shown in the photo below.
Do you need some inspiration for your next deck project? Decking is an attractive and affordable solution for leveling off an uneven or sloping landscape. Decking may also be divided into many levels and contain steps, making it perfect for dining furniture and requiring strong foot traffic.
Millboard’s composite decking boards are environmentally friendly, anti-slip, and maintenance-free, thanks to a unique composition of polyurethane and a mineral blend. This wood-free decking features a non-porous outer layer, so the rain does the heavy job of cleaning it.
6. The Furniture
Choose furniture that can be folded up and stored beneath a dining table for usage in a smaller patio or courtyard. In smaller areas, L-shaped couches may save space, while whole seating sets with matching chairs, sofas, and tables can fill bigger areas. Other options include sun loungers and day beds, as well as on-trend egg chairs and swing seats.
It’s worth the money to get a long-lasting piece of garden furniture. Allow adequate room for everyone to sit comfortably and draw out their chair without bumping into anything, so keep this in mind when planning your seating arrangement. When everyone is seated around the table, remember that you’ll also need enough space to wander about. It takes up a lot more room than you’d expect.
Claire Belderbos, director of garden design specialists Belderbos Landscapes, says that “a dining table works best in the section of the garden that enjoys early afternoon full or partial sun. Install a more intimate seating area for taking in the fading light of the setting sun.
If you’re unable to bring your three-piece set home for the winter, consider investing in furniture coverings to keep it safe and functional. If you buy outdoor furniture, don’t forget to add outdoor cushions for added comfort.
In addition, don’t forget about other garden necessities, such as fire pits and chimineas, patio heaters and grills, and pizza ovens — arranging room for them and where they’ll be kept or covered in the winter is crucial.
7. Make sure you’re aware of your own limits.
The appearance of boundary walls, fences, and hedges is critical in a tiny garden since they may be the most noticeable feature. They don’t all have to be the same but attempt to establish visual connections between them. Climbers in matching colors might be grown on the same style offense, for example. Whitewash or clad the fences with battens or trellis if you can’t alter them. Before doing any work, make sure you know who owns the fence and get permission from them.
It’s also critical to consider the materials you use. Timber posts, for example, may be used for a wide range of purposes, including fencing a garden. Plants and seating places may be framed with them, and walks and borders can be made more interesting by strategically placing them around the garden.
The NHS 70 Garden at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, designed by Bowles & Wyer, demonstrates a particularly imaginative application of this technology. They utilized salvaged wood posts to frame the vista along a meandering route in the center of the space, arranging them at various heights and angles so that guests may discover new parts of the space as they move through it.
8. Zoning and Security measures
Consider adding privacy screens to some parts of your garden to make them feel more like distinct living spaces. Pergolas and fences are good examples of hard landscaping. Hardy rose bushes or tall bamboo can’t go wrong, says Jon Holloway, the proprietor of Garden Trading, who recommends them. Potted trees can also be used as an alternative.
Consider zoning your garden if you have a restricted amount of space, but this is a fantastic concept regardless of the form or size of your garden. Vicky Angell, the outdoor living buyer for John Lewis & Partners, adds, “The garden is obviously an extension of the kitchen and living room. Our homes are smaller on average than ever before, so we’re turning to the outside for room to party and rest. This is part of the reason behind this.
9. It’s time to adorn the fifth room!
Consider adding cozy garden décor and tactile items to your outdoor space to make it a peaceful haven. This is really an outdoor living room, so keep that in mind when looking for furniture and accessories for your outdoor space.
Make your outside space cozier by adding a recycled plastic outdoor mat, chunky knit blankets, lanterns, and outdoor cushions, all of which can be found at Cuckooland. Make the most of your outside living area by using a garden mirror, a waterproof speaker, citronella candles, and a patio heater.
10. Incorporate your decorations into the overall design.
With garden decorations, the most essential guideline is to blend them in with the surrounding plants as much as possible. The placement of an ornament or water feature in the middle of a barren area will not look attractive, even if it is beneficial for animals. Overcrowding a room with furniture that is either too tiny or unwieldy could make your property appear unappealing to potential buyers, which could lower its resale value.
Instead of a fountain, try a modest stone trough with a water spout like the one in Butter Wakefield’s Ribbon Wheel garden for those who wish to hear the trickle of flowing water while gardening (below). The garden beyond the ancient trough is reflected in antiqued mirrors and painted a dark grey to contrast the green of the surrounding plants. Wall panels dangle above the trough.
11. A garden room can be built.
You don’t need to get permission to build a garden room, which is a terrific option to provide more space for an office or a yoga studio in your house. A big shed or summerhouse might be the ideal place to host summer parties and even serve as additional guest quarters. Don’t only have a place to enjoy food and drink in the sunshine in your yard.
12. Walls that are constantly changing
It is becoming increasingly fashionable to incorporate vertical plants into landscape designs by using living walls. For a living wall to work, you need to select the proper plants for each location, just like you would for a garden border. For a more permanent addition to your home, consider installing a living wall planter or a green wall kit.
A more expensive option for covering vast stretches of the wall is to use high-impact living wall systems, which vary in price according to on the level of complexity you choose.
Hydroponic walls were installed on the roof and in the basement gardens of this London office building by John Davies. Buddleia and Fuschia, for example, are blooming shrubs and perennials that combine well with evergreens to provide year-round interest and color.
Alternatively, you may create an immediate living wall by planting on your garden walls, whether with a trellis or containers. A vertical aspect may be added to your garden by using climbing plants and wall shrubs like clematis, roses, honeysuckle, or wisteria.
13. Keep the lights in mind.
Don’t underestimate the power of lighting when it comes to setting the mood in your garden. In the same manner that you layer inside lighting, you should do the same in the garden, using a variety of sources, such as fairy lights, festoon lights, wall lights, freestanding lamps, and ground lights (Lights4Fun provide a wonderful choice). A fire pit and outside lighting allow you to continue enjoying your environment even if the weather is less than ideal, according to Jon Holloway.
There’s no better way to add character and mood to your outdoor eating area than with fairy lights or lanterns strewn across a garden walk (Lights4Fun has a wonderful selection).
14. Solutions for limited space
The most important thing to remember while planting is to do it vertically. Use fences and walls to your advantage and buy hanging baskets to maximize your area (these are great for front gardens too). Switch to gravel as a paving material; it’s far less expensive. Just though you have a little garden, it doesn’t mean that you can’t appreciate it and get the most out of your time with it. Invest in a garden bistro set for flair and usefulness, as well as deck chairs for convenient, on-the-spot dining.
15. A garden belonging to a household.
To make the most of the available area in a family garden, creative landscaping is a must. Adolfo Harrison, for example, constructed a secret playground in this garden in east London by incorporating play components within the design.
Pergolas and slides may be tied to monkey bars, boulder stepping stones are put out to allow youngsters to leap between them down the length of the garden, and two moon seats are situated within a living wall to create a fun face. A ‘ceiling’ of long-stemmed bamboos creates a more intimate ambiance and enlarges the room by reflecting light. Mirrors are also employed.
Zoned play areas are essential since tiny family gardens are generally dominated by play equipment, leaving little room for other activities. As opposed to installing a slide or playhouse in a large yard, for smaller areas, you may utilize sand tables or even mud kitchen playsets in a corner.
16. Wildlife should not be overlooked.
Consider the influence your garden design has on animals at all times. Plant bee-friendly plants, talk to your neighbors about constructing a hedgehog highway and get some bird feeders to hang from fences or tree branches. A growing number of people are building bee hotels, ponds, log piles, plants for pollinators, and compost heaps.