Why you should love having a small garden

Gardening in small spaces brings huge pleasure

A small space isn't the gardening disadvantage that you might think! There are so many people who are put off from buying properties with tiny gardens or courtyards. Let's face it, most average modern houses  are set in small plots. But even the most enthusiastic of gardeners can gain great benefits compared to those with big gardens. So why should a small garden NOT curb your affection for a home?

Excite the passion!

A diminutive outside space can result in an extraordinary passion, even for former 'non-gardeners'! It's all about manageability, creativity and imaginative thinking. patio, seating, garden, lawn, features, focal point, flowers, grass, planting, small space, gardening, What an intriguing space, with hard surfacing, lawn, raised beds, seating and features Small spaces often prove to be more satisfying than larger plots because a gardener can manipulate, engineer and nurture every square centimetre of space to his or her liking. This would be an impossible aspiration in a large garden without an army of regular helpers and a tree that grows money. It is feasible to maintain a small plot in a weekend. A spare half an hour, put to good use, will make a big impact, whereas the same amount of time in a large plot will go virtually unnoticed. small garden, planting, foxgloves, gate, explore, design, gardening, perfectplants.co.uk, A small garden with huge interest! It doesn't need a lawn because it is filled with interesting planting and begs you to explore.

Let’s unlock some small space secrets!

Firstly, look beyond the boundaries and think outside of the box. Most gardens have a patio, a lawn and flower beds and this is probably what you will inherit with the house. If you have some steps, you are already onto a winner! steps, garden, quirky, levels, design, stone, stepping, garden steps, stairs, design, garden design, gardening, small garden, perfectplants.co.uk, Wouldn't you just love to have these quirky steps in your garden?

Steps and changes in levels

Changes in levels are interesting, as are areas that make you want to explore. If you can see all your small garden at a single glance, it represents rather a dull space. flamingo, lawn, small garden, grass, patio, fence, gardening, garden design, small space, perfectplants.co.uk, The flamingos make this lawn look interesting but otherwise, it's a bit dull!

Vertical climbers

Disguising the fence is a good place to start in a small garden. Any vertical surface can provide interesting growing potential and now’s the time to clothe them in climbers, wall shrubs or even hanging plants. climber, fence, clematis, ivy, honeysuckle, garden, vertical, growing, gardening, plants, small garden, Is the eye drawn to the fence or the climber?

Wildlife

Pop up a few birdboxes too, as the wildlife will enjoy making a home in amongst the climbing stems. For the more adventurous there are also vertical green wall systems complete with planting pockets in which to create a truly artistic display. When covering a fence, you could build in the illusion of a doorway or window leading to further space. Mirrors are a great way to bounce some light around and provide a little magic. Make sure that only small areas of mirror show, however, as birds tend to fly into them. mirror, garden mirror, design, small space, garden room, mystery, illusion, spatial, garden, gardening, perfectplants.co.uk, A garden mirror can add intrigue and create a spatial illusion.

Raised beds and structures

Next, raised beds with planting that obscures some of the garden beyond, garden obelisks and structural plants give the eye a space to roam and a carefully positioned archway can lead the mind towards exploration. planting, plants, raised beds, garden, gardening, garden design, see through plants, small garden, 'See through' plants in a raised bed tend to add depth to a small space and make it seem more spacious and interesting.

Lawn

Then there’s the lawn. Some people decide to do without one, and there’s good argument for doing so in a small garden. However, you really need to ensure that you fill the space with interest rather than hard surfaces that are no good for man nor beast. patio, small garden, planting, outdoors, garden, gardening, garden design, seating area, boring, perfectplants.co.uk, There's interesting planting, pleasant colours and appealing furniture on this small patio. Others like a green lawn mantle because it’s a visual pleasure and provides a natural backdrop for plants; it offers potential for games and gives access to different areas too. The smell of freshly mown lawn is not to be sniffed at either! Make it an interesting shape to bring a feast to the table but avoid fussy curves and intricate shapes. Interlocking rectangles or circles, an oval or ribbon of lawn can be highly effective in a small space. It’s well known but not always well remembered that large shapes in a small space make the scale seem bigger. lawn, grass, small garden, interesting garden, planting, plants, greenery, imaginative space, gardening, perfectplants.co.uk, What a delightful lawn! There's nothing boring about this shape, not the beautiful planting.

Focal point

Whilst a focal point is always useful, in a small space it’s not helpful to have too many. If you have a penchant for garden statues, for example, keep all but one well-hidden so you catch only a glimpse when you are looking closely. It’s far more intriguing to position statues behind planting rather than having several un-related items dotted randomly around the garden. water feature, pond, garden, feature, sculpture, statue, planting, plants, A tasteful water feature with surrounding planting looks good in a small space, but make sure it's not too fussy.

Water features

The same principle goes for water features which are far more effective when they blend ‘naturally’ into the small garden rather than appearing to have fallen from the sky! You might want something such as a bench, framed by planting, positioned in a visual focal point in order to provide a logical destination. It continues the theme of a journey and can be highly effective, even in the smallest of spaces. statue, garden, feature, focal point, design, small garden, small space, outdoors, gardening, perfectplants.co.uk, A statue can provide a focal point within a garden but it will look much better if it's surrounded by planting to help it blend in.