Decoration, Garden Design, Garden Furniture, Gardening, How To, Water Features, Zoe

It can be difficult to make the most of your space in a small garden without the effect feeling claustrophobic. There are a number of reasons your garden may feel small:
• High imposing walls or fences surrounding your garden
• Lack of natural light making the space feel dark and small
• No interesting colour incorporation to brighten the area
• Oversized garden furniture that overpowers the area
• Abundance of overgrown greenery
• Or simply a very small space to work with

This guide can help you with some space saving and trendy ideas that will help transform your small garden into a light and relaxing place to be, that still offers plenty of opportunity to test your gardening skills.

Mirrors

The use of mirrors in a small garden can really help to create a sense of space as the light reflects off the glass and into the outdoor area. There are many options to suit your individual style, whether it is a country garden or modern social space.
One way to incorporate mirrors is to have two identical mirrors facing each other; this will create the feel of an infinite garden and prov
ide a great opportunity to make the most of natural lighting.

 

Alternatively, you can use an ornate garden window mirror that adds character and charm. If you’re feeling crafty you could create this yourself with recycled window shutters!
The use of mini mirrors can incorporate light into the garden in a more subtle way, whilst creating a unique texture. The combination of outside fairy lights trailing along your mirrors can also create a lovely atmosphere in the evening.

If you want to learn more about the safety aspects of garden mirrors check out our previous blog post!

 

 

Stainless Steel Planters

If you’re not keen on using mirrors, stainless steel planters offer an excellent alternative. These will help to make the surrounding space seem bigger, and do not pose the same risks as mirrors do outside.
Try creating some depth in your small garden by adding plants of different heights in your planters, this will create a layered effect and also make the space appear larger.

Water

A water feature can be a great way to add some personality to your garden, and is a great tool to carry through a theme in your garden whether it is a classic country style, oriental theme or an ultra-modern layout.

However, the fantastic thing about water features in small gardens is the opportunity to incorporate light into a space, similarly to mirrors and stainless steel. The water from the feature will reflect the sky, and is a more natural way to reflect light into your garden. One bonus of this is that this may encourage wildlife too!

Trees

In a small garden the addition of trees can create the illusion of space. You can cleverly train certain trees to grow in a particular direction to help cover an ugly wall, and make the space seem less imposing. This may require a bit of patience in order to achieve the desired results however!

Vertical Planting

There are many other little ways you can make the most of your secluded spots through the use of vertical planting. This can be
achieved through Trellis’ and climbing plants, which will grow upwards and help hide walls.

However, for an easier option you could purchase a wall mounted planter that can attach easily to a wall and still optimise vertical space.

Screening

If you have dark walls or fencing surrounding your garden, this may be another reason the space feels so small. Sometimes the colours can have the effect of feeling gloomy or oppressive, but one easy way to brighten your garden is the addition of some screening.

This is easy to put up, and can also cover any broken brickwork or blemishes. There are a range of materials and colours to choose from, but a natural style bamboo screening could really help to boost the feeling of space by brightening the whole area and adding some personality.

Storage Solutions

If you’re short of space in your garden but still want to have a chill out area there are a range of storage solutions that can help you do that.
Seating with storage space built in is one particularly clever way to create more space in your garden as it is not visible. This gives you the option to have an area to relax but also be able to store away things such as blankets, cushions etc. when they are not needed!

You could also use coffee tables with storage built in as an alternative to bulky sheds and storage boxes, this would be a great addition to a social space so your guests can relax with a couple of drinks after you’ve stored away some of your garden necessities!

Hopefully this guide has inspired you to make the most of the space you have, and if you want to explore design tips for lighting your small garden be sure to read our advice on this too!

Zoe at PrimroseZoë works in the Marketing team at Primrose, and is passionate about all things social media.

After travelling across Europe and Asia, Zoë is intrigued by different cultures and learning more about the world around her. If she’s not jet setting, Zoë loves nothing more than curling up with a good book and a large glass of red wine!

She is an amateur gardener but keen to learn more and get stuck in!

See all of Zoë’s posts.

Gardening, Primrose Gardens, Sally

The photos we chose this week made us want to jump out of bed, grab a hot brew and hop straight into the garden. We have seen the hard work and progress you have made with your gardens on Primrose Gardens and this week’s theme is to celebrate the times when you can finally sit back and relax:

We love this corner of Sarah and Tim's Garden, perfect for sitting with a hot brew.
We love this corner of Sarah and Tim’s Garden, perfect for sitting with a hot brew.
Gardens of Coolcreen have the best of both worlds - Natural rugged beauty and a great place to relax.
Gardens of Coolcreen have the best of both worlds – natural rugged beauty and a great place to relax.
Lovely little spot in Teddie's Garden.
Lovely little spot in Teddie’s Garden.
Diana garden
Gorgeous patio area in Diana’s garden.

Primrose Gardens allows you to create a beautiful pictorial record of your garden that you, your family and your friends can enjoy over the years. But it’s also a community of garden enthusiasts and the perfect space to discuss tips and tricks.

Sally primroseSally works in the Marketing team here at Primrose.

She spends most of her spare time looking into the latest developments in social media. Sally loves travel and wants to step foot in every continent in the world. When not travelling the Globe or working, she likes to relax with a bit of DIY.

She is a novice gardener and doesn’t claim to be an expert, anything she learns she will happily pass on.

See all of Sally’s posts.

George, How To

How to Windproof Your Garden

In our unpredictable climate, protecting your garden against wind is essential. Blustery weather can damage tender plants, scatter seeds and hurl objects into your property. But don’t worry, with just a few simple tips you can learn how to windproof your garden in preparation for the next unexpected gusts.

Ways to windproof your garden

The only way to provide protection from the breezes is with windbreaks. A windbreak can be any sort of barrier, provided it is securely held down and around 50% permeable. This allows enough air to flow through, rather than sending the wind over the top in even stronger eddies. Here are some ideas for making your own windbreaks:

Hedges and fedges

A windbreak just needs to divide up your garden against the blustery air, so a natural barrier is fine. Hedges such as beech or hornbeam are particularly wind-resistant. For an alternative look, you could also grow your own living fence – a fedge. Simply plant a row of willow and weave the strands together.

Fencing

Remember that solid fences will actually make wind problems worse as they will force the air over, or risk bringing the fence down. Permeable fencing like willow and hazel hurdles make great windbreaks though, filtering just enough air through. This kind of fencing is also ideal for sheltering hedging while it grows to size.

Willow Hurdles

Screening

Putting up a barrier of screening material is a thorough solution for creating a windbreak. Netted privacy screening is effective either on its own, on in combination with other kinds of decorative screening. This option is ideal if you need a fast, complete result, if not always as attractive as more natural dividers.

Plants

Growing a windbreak is one of the most flexible methods of protection. You can adapt the borders to the areas of your garden that are most exposed or that you want to shelter. As well as the hedges mentioned above, plants such as lavender and box hedge make reliable barriers for low-growing areas.

Garden dividers

There are all kinds of other ways to break up your garden into less wind-exposed patches. Retractable windbreak awnings provide reliable protection for your patio. Pick and choose from trellis panels, pergolas, sail shades and even fruit trees to add more shelter elsewhere – and a bit of a feature!

Greenhouse Wind Protection

Greenhouse wind protection

Of all the things in your garden, the greenhouse is often most vulnerable to wind damage. Strong gusts can fling debris into the windows and shatter the glass. They particularly suffer when the wind can get inside and blow out panels, so the best protection is to try to prevent any air gaps. Fix up any damaged or lost panels as soon as you spot them. Tape up any cracks and board up missing pieces until you’re able to replace the panel. Finally, when you notice it getting windy make sure to keep the greenhouse door firmly shut.

Emergency wind protection

If it suddenly starts blowing a gale outside, you need to act fast to limit any potential damage. Make sure all garden buildings like sheds and greenhouses are locked up. Bring inside any light objects that are likely to blow away and cause damage to windows and other structures. These include plastic pots, ornaments and – ironically – windchimes.

Dog in Wind

Blown away

In the UK at least, we’re unlikely to get too many disastrous wind storms a year, so it’s best to keep your garden prepared for the regular blustery spells. Use dividers and clever planting to create borders and shelter the most exposed areas. Keep an eye on your greenhouse to make sure it’s sealed against the wind. Bring inside or tie down anything that might take off if a gale really picks up. And if your garden only gets a gentle breeze, embrace it with a wind chime or hanging decoration. After all – you can’t fight the wind, only prepare for it.

George at PrimroseGeorge works in the Primrose marketing team. As a lover of all things filmic, he also gets involved with our TV ads and web videos.

George’s idea of the perfect time in the garden is a long afternoon sitting in the shade with a good book. A cool breeze, peace and quiet… But of course, he’s usually disturbed by his energetic wire fox terrier, Poppy!

He writes about his misadventures in repotting plants and new discoveries about cat repellers.

See all of George’s posts.

Garden Design, Garden Screening, George, How To, Sail Shades

If you live in a city or terraced house, you know how difficult it can be to relax in your garden without the feeling you’re being overlooked by neighbouring windows or passers by. With summer fast approaching, now’s the time to prepare your outdoor space so that you can make the most of it without the fear of prying eyes. We’ve put together a list of garden privacy ideas that you can easily try out at home to stop your garden being overlooked – without compromising on the natural aesthetics and your outdoor designs.

Garden Privacy Screen

1. Garden privacy screens

Garden screening is a simple, quick and attractive way to shield off part of your garden. It’s great for terraced houses with low fences or wire dividers between gardens. Choose the type of screening that suits your taste – bamboo, willow or artificial to name a few – and attach it to an existing fence or trellis for a privacy boost. Creating a beautiful enclosed area to relax in has never been so easy!

 

 2. Hanging sail shadesSail Shade

Of course, often you won’t be exposed necessarily by the fences in your garden, but by overlooking windows from the houses next door. This is especially common in city streets, where the houses are packed so tightly together that it’s hard to find somewhere to sit in your garden where you don’t feel watched. Hoisting up a sail shade or two over you patio is an ingenious solution. The best part is you can easily just put them up for the summer months, when you want to sit outside under a little shelter from the sun – and any prying eyes.

 

Living Wall

3. Living wall

It’s a classic solution but one of the best: put up a border of trellis and allow some climbing plants to grow up it. This will create an attractive, organic barrier between you and any gaps where people can peep through into your garden. If you’re overlooked by any upstairs windows, then combining the trellis with a pergola over your patio, decking or seating area will give you a perfect private enclave once the plants have grown across. Clematis or ivy are good climbing vines to choose.

 

Hedge

4. Privacy planting

If you need a free standing barrier to shield off part of your patio, try making a wall out of tall planters. Choose any such pots in the style you like and fill them with big plants or trees for maximum shelter. Growing your own screening is another age old solution to the problem of being overlooked. Add height to your fences with an additional border of fast growing hedges like the evergreen yew. Or for an alternative that lets in a bit more light, plant some bamboo. Of course, bamboo can often spread out of control but clumping varieties are known for being more contained, or just plant the bamboo in containers.

 

Water Feature

5. Sound barriers

In the modern age of urban living, we are often so crammed that when you’re outside in the garden you end up hearing every word from your neighbours – and knowing they can hear you too. A great way to create some psychological shelter is by using a water fountain or two so the sound of their running water will mask your conversation as well as the noises from next door.

Let us know if you have any more suggestions for making your garden more private and we hope you find these tips helpful!

George at PrimroseGeorge works in the Primrose marketing team. As a lover of all things filmic, he also gets involved with our TV ads and web videos.

George’s idea of the perfect time in the garden is a long afternoon sitting in the shade with a good book. A cool breeze, peace and quiet… But of course, he’s usually disturbed by his energetic wire fox terrier, Poppy!

He writes about his misadventures in repotting plants and new discoveries about cat repellers.

See all of George’s posts.

Share!