Whether you’re growing a small vegetable garden or designing a courtyard, there are a few things that can help make the most of your space.
First, start with the right plants and look for ones that are easy to care for. You’ll want to pick plants that offer at least two seasons of interest and aren’t prone to common garden problems like pests or disease.
Start with the Right Plants
Small gardens are more effective with few but quality plants than with a mishmash of ill-matched blooms and foliage. Stick to a palette of long-flowering perennials, evergreen shrubs, climbers, bulbs and small trees/large shrubs that can form a framework of permanent planting.
Many perennials, including lilies and astilbes, offer spring flower color that then continues into the summer and fall with fruit or foliage. Taller, shrub-like varieties can be trained as pleached or trimmed into compact topiary to provide a sense of height and privacy.
Shade-loving evergreens, such as sarcococca, will add interest even in small spaces and give you a winter crop of fragrant white flowers and purple berries that provide food for garden wildlife. This low-maintenance plant thrives in sunny or part-shade and grows well in almost any soil. Trim it back after its flowers fade, but take care not to cut into old wood.
Make the Most of Your Space
Small garden tips can make a big difference to how your space looks and feels. When designing with a tight space in mind, consider plants that are tall or slim in shape to accentuate the height of your garden rather than its length.
Plants that grow up trellises and walls can be another great way to free up space in your garden without making it feel cramped. Think of climbing vines like clematis, or tall plants that will take up more sky than ground space such as the fastigiate areca palm.
You’ll want to choose plants that have foliage that will change in both height and depth as the seasons go by. These will add a sense of depth to your garden, which will help it to look larger and more interesting.
It’s easier to get good results with a small garden when you plan ahead. Whether you’re transforming an existing backyard, or starting from scratch, make sure your garden will work with your lifestyle.
Before buying any plants, identify easy-care, low maintenance options that will thrive in your area and need little attention. This will save you time and money in the long run.
Another way to maximise space is to divide your garden into separate areas. This can be achieved with a wall or fence, a trellis or even an evergreen hedge.
By dividing up your garden into smaller spaces, you can create zones that are more manageable and that will respond to changing weather. This will help you avoid planting too early or too late and ensure your crops are healthy. It also makes your garden more manageable and enjoyable to maintain.
Don’t Overdo It
If you’re lucky enough to have a backyard, it’s a good idea to get in the habit of regular visits to your green oasis. It’s a great time to take note of any weeds that might be sprouting, inspect any fruits or vegetables that are growing and give your flowers some much needed TLC.
Taking the time to do it right is always a good idea and can save you both money and headaches in the long run. The biggest mistake is to try and do too much too quickly, as it can lead to burn out and a lack of motivation. The best way to tackle this is to be realistic about the amount of time you have available and stick to a schedule. The best part about this plan is that it will help you make the most of your time and space and have fun doing it! The result is a garden you’ll be proud to show off to your friends and family.