It’s always being said in the media that gardens have now become an extension of our homes, but many of the people who throw this cliché around don’t really tell us much more than that.
Pick up any gardening magazine and experts will tell you that you should be embracing the ‘outdoor room’ concept. That we should be designing and decorating our outdoor spaces, in the same way we would a room inside our homes.
OK then, do you care to elaborate? No? OK then we will… At Lazy Susan, we feel that the fundamentals of interior design do begin to become pretty useful when you’re trying to make something of a small backyard or garden.
Small outdoor spaces truly do benefit from the ideas you might usually associate with say a living room. For example, light bright paint, mirrors and focal objects can all help to make a space feel bigger.
But the key to small garden design is not to treat that limited space like a standard garden. You won’t benefit from, say, the kind of varied planting that a normal garden can enjoy, you need to keep things structured, simple.
It is vital you choose your accessories wisely too. As much as the trendy oversized outdoor sofa would be comfy, its no good if it takes up too much space. So with that in mind, we’ve pulled together a few of our favourite space saving garden tips and accessories:
Corner Plant Stands
An otherwise redundant corner can be brought to life by simply adding a tiered corner plant stand such as the one pictured above from Houzz.com.
Crafted from black iron and powder-coated to resist rust & moisture, their Flora Corner Plant Stand is just like the ones you see loaded with gorgeous blooms on almost every street in Europe.
Three curled shelves are graduated to create a perfect display and slatted for easy drainage. And you can combine their Corner and Linear styles to wrap around any length of wall too.
You can also free up space but still retain ‘green’ interest with a vertical planter such as the one below. This is a clever way of incorporating a fence and planters all in one, freeing up floor space but retaining greenery.
Not enough floor space for containers and pots? Then another alternative to the corner planter is to look for space on higher ground such as on window sills and on the exterior walls. But if thats not an option, what about outdoor shelving?
The robust shelf of teak and powder-coated aluminium makes this shelf unit Garpa perfect for the garden. There’s Plenty of space, and baskets and trays can be fitted on the 45 cm wide shelves, the two smaller ones are suitable for herbs and trailing plants. While the adjustable screw-feet take care of uneven surfaces.
Mediterranean Style Gardens
Give the illusion of more space in your garden by keeping it simple and a Mediterranean style garden is the perfect solution. They have a great article on this subject over at Houzz.com
The Minimalist Garden
Contemporary surfaces like wood, slate and metal create a garden that looks sleek, streamlined and spacious. A zen-like, minimalist garden can feature built-in seating and storage solutions.
The garden design pictured above from 900 House is the perfect example of what you can achieve in a limited space.
If you have no flower beds to speak of and your garden is simply of a dull slab of backyard concrete, then bring it to life by mixing up a jumble of planters and containers filled with bright blooms. Easy to maintain and easy to change up if you get bored.
These large trough planters from My-GardenRoom.co.uk above are the perfect solution. Big enough to make a statement, but simple enough not to take up to much space. They are ideal for placing along edges or for creating boundaries to break a space up.
They come as a set of 3 rectangular troughs and are constructed from fibre-clay, an environmentally friendly composite of clay, fibreglass and magnesia which is much stronger conventional terracotta/clay and much cheaper than polyresin or fibreglass.
This construction offers superior strength and stability in construction, resulting in a fantastically durable, lightweight product. It also produces a much more natural looking, durable pot that is ideal for outdoor use.
To help define your deck while maximising the sense of space, why not add a glass balustrade system to a deck. The new contemporary fusion glass panel system from Richard Burbidge for example adds interest to your deck . It breaks the space up without obscuring the view or making the space feel cramped.
And last but not least, if your small garden doesn’t get too much sunlight, banish the shade by painting exterior walls in a light, bright colour. At Lazy Susan we’re a big fan of the Farrow & Ball masonary paint collection.
All their paints are water based, eco friendly and comply with the latest EU environmental legislation regarding the Volatile Organic Compounds content of paints.
Their paints are breathable, and feature a fungal and water resistant formula that helps to combat damp in walls, and is resistant to peeling, cracking, chalking, blistering and colour fade for up to 15 years.