With the Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival being held this week (4th to 9th July), there is plenty of inspiration for those looking to create their own aesthetic garden haven. As specialists in affordable housing, we are aware that many of our buyers want to create a tranquil outdoor retreat that they can enjoy without spending a fortune. Whether you are looking to completely transform you garden, make a few easy tweaks or just enjoy the space you already have, keep reading for our favourite garden design and care tips.
Designing Your Dream Garden
If you are looking to make a dramatic change to your garden, it is important to first plan out your design! Here are our top tips for developing unique ideas that will work for you.
Making the space work. What do you want to do in your garden? Are you looking to entertain friends? Do you want somewhere for the kids to burn off energy? Or do you want a tranquil spot to practice yoga before work? Before you start buying plants and furniture, you need to establish what you want to get out of your space. If there are a few different things that you would like to achieve, consider how much space you need for each and zone your garden accordingly to create clear areas for different activities.
Stimulate the senses. Why not take inspiration from Dave Green’s Forest Bathing Garden, and design a garden that activates the senses to create mindfulness? When planning planting, think beyond the colour and also consider the aromatic benefits of certain plants. If you want to add an auditory element to your garden, wind chimes or a water feature can be a calming addition. Blending different textures can add an interesting visual element, as well as provide a variety of haptic stimuli.
The wonders of wildlife. Gardens can offer vital habitats and food sources to a range of creatures. If you want to share the benefits of your garden with local wildlife, there are plenty of ways that you can encourage it to visit. Birds will equally enjoy dining at a hanging bird feeder filled with specialist food or feasting on berries growing in the garden. Planting native wildflowers is fantastic for pollinators like bees, whilst hedges can provide shelter for birds.
Adding a Personal Touch on a Budget
Just like in your home, a garden is a great place to show off your creativity and unique personal style. Buying bespoke garden furniture or paying a professional to bring your vision to life can be expensive, so here are some tips for creating a statement on a budget.
DIY garden furniture. The chances are that your ideal garden will feature a seating area. Rather than splashing out on a brand-new garden furniture set, why not create your own? Transform some old furniture that you no longer need or that you have scavenged from a second-hand store with a couple of coats of weatherproof paint to provide a new lease of life. Alternatively, if you are happy to get out the toolbox, you could build your own seating out of wooden pallets.
Add a pop of colour. Even the dullest corner of a garden can be reimagined with a touch of colour. Whilst coloured pots can be expensive, it is really easy to paint your own! Painting your own also means you have more control of the colour and design pattern of the finish pot. For those who aren’t keen on painting, consider making your own pots out of other colourful items. Old teacups and mugs can be used to contain small plants, whilst wellies can become uniquely shaped planters. These cute and colourful pots can also work well inside the home.
A winding pathway. Not only are paths functional garden features, but they are also a great way to visually break up a lawn. Although paving slabs can be quite pricey, you can create your own path using gravel. Not only is this more economical, but it is also much easier to lay!
Summer Gardening Tips
If you already have your garden design perfected, it is important to spend a bit of time over the summer working to maintain it.
When to water? With the sun hopefully shining a lot this summer, it is important to make sure that your plants get plenty of water. Frequent watering when the top few inches of the soil feel dry is the best way to ensure that your plants don’t start drooping. To avoid the water evaporating before it has soaked into the soil, it is recommended to do this either in the early morning or in the late evening.
Watch the weeds. Weeds can spring up quickly in the summer months. Consistency is the key to preventing them from taking over large chunks of your garden. Committing to spending a short amount of time every week pulling up weeds from the roots can help keep your chosen plants as the central focal point in your garden.
A summer harvest. Although many crops are not ready until the Autumn months, there are a few that are ripe and ready in the summer months. Berries, cucumbers, and beans are all summer harvest crops that can provide a fresh flavour to your salads. Alternatively, if you are yet to start your own vegetable plot, there is still time to plant lettuces, radish and spring onions before the frost sets in.
If you are interested in buying a stunning new house with a garden, we are preparing to launch the next phase of homes at Whiteley Meadows near Winchester. Complete with turf and a paved patio area, these gardens provide the perfect blank canvas for you to become your own landscape gardener. Anyone interested in finding out more about these Shared Ownership homes is now able to arrange a visit to our new show home.