Small Gardens, Big Ideas

Thu 28 Jul 2016 Amy Kilvington

Small Gardens, Big Ideas

The word ‘garden’ often conjures images of sweeping lawns, vibrant borders, vegetable patches and even a water feature or two. The truth is, most of us will never have a space like this to call our own. But that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy an equally gorgeous garden –  it’ll just be on a smaller scale!

When it comes to gardens, many people assume that bigger equals better. But just because your garden is petite, doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy it. There are so many advantages to having a dedicated outdoor space, from the fresh air and exercise opportunities it offers (gardening burns a lot of calories, you know!) to the environmental benefits. Do you want to transform your tired outdoor space into a pocket-sized plot of paradise? Read on to find out how.



Small gardens, big ideas | Flower boxesWhether your outdoor area is a petite patio, a little lawn or a bijou balcony, there are plenty of clever tricks to transform it into a peaceful and inviting place. First things first, establish the size and shape of the space you’re working with, and consider its strong points and the sections that might need a little more work. Next, think about your budget: how much are you willing to spend? If your property is rented, it won’t be worth investing a huge amount. Instead, set aside a little bit of cash to buy some planters and ornaments, as you’ll be able to transfer these to any new home you move into it. Take a look at how your neighbours have styled their own gardens – you might get some good ideas, and also realise what doesn’t quite work! Now you’ve taken the time to assess your outdoor space, it’s time to get creative…

“It’s all in the detail.”

There really are a number of ways to enhance the space in the smallest of gardens. “It’s all in the detail,” explain Jacksons Fencing, UK leaders in fencing and gate products. “Fences, sheds, lighting and raised beds make a dramatic impact in your garden.” These features can all be configured to suit a more limited space, they just require a little more thought. “A pergola is also the perfect option for smaller gardens. They offer extra space for hanging baskets and climbers – they’re ideal for people who love a garden to be full of plants and wildlife.” Your urban garden will surely benefit from upright planters, too, allowing you to introduce shrubs, flowers and herbs in a vertical manner. “Use height when planting to create a visual, vertical garden, utilising the space and substantially increasing your planting area – the perfect solution for compact gardens,” they add.

Pergola with flowers (c) Jacksons Fencing

It’s not only large vegetable patches than can provide you with a home grown supply of veg, either. Even the smallest of outdoor spaces can produce delicious food, but remember to steer clear of plants that require a lot of space. Consider chillies, tomatoes, beans and peas, along with herbs like basil, coriander, mint and chives. Along with your edible plants, introduce bright blooms to add colour and texture. Pretty flowers will make your space much more inviting, along with providing wildlife with places to feast, shelter and gather for their nests.


“Another significant step towards sustainability.”

Tiny gardens, yards, terraces and patios require a more economical and creative way of thinking. Consider a bench that offers storage, folding furniture that can be neatly stored and gazebos that add shelter without being overpowering. Savvy solutions not only benefit little gardens in terms of space, but they’re often more eco-friendly with a smaller ecological footprint, especially if you opt for reclaimed and up-cycled products. When it comes to fencing, there are a number of options that offer privacy without taking up too much space. “If your garden is dark or small the solution may be semi-solid panels,” Jacksons explain. “These not only add visual appeal, but the gaps allow light and wind to pass through, creating a bright and airy garden.” It’s also important to consider the environmental impact of these outdoor additions. If you’re investing in large structures, be sure to opt for wood from a sustainable source. “Stick to timber that carries the FSC or PEFC label. Also, look for a product that is formulated for strength and durability, so it won’t rot and need to be replaced. Selecting timber with a long service life is yet another significant step towards sustainability.”

Once you’ve finished planting, constructing and choosing your garden’s functional accessories, make the most of minimal maintenance (small gardens are much easier to take of than acres of lawn) and treat your space to some charming touches. Fairy lights, lanterns and candles will all give your outdoor space character, along with the addition of mirrors, which will create the illusion of more space as well as giving your garden a quirky edge.


When you’re finished sprucing up your outdoor space, remember that the British weather won’t always allow you to enjoy it. However, you’ll still be able to appreciate the view through the window – be sure to invest in an environmentally friendly blind to continue the ecological theme, such as one of our FSC approved wooden blinds.

These clever ideas will transform your small garden or balcony into a beautiful and relaxing spot, perfect for enjoying the fresh air, socialising with friends and making your home a more environmentally friendly place. Remember, no matter the size or location of your property, there’s sure to be a way to enjoy the outdoors. Sometimes, you just have to think differently.

Do you have a small garden with big ideas? Maybe you use your balcony to grow vegetables and herbs? Let us know about your outdoor space by tweeting us @InteriorGoods. You can also shop our collection of sustainable wooden blinds – perfect for the eco-friendly individual – by clicking the button below.

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