How to make the most of a small garden

Did you know that in urban Britain, the average garden size for consumers aged 25-44 year olds it is 12m²?*

Outdoor spaces in towns and cities tend to be in smaller spaces and are cleverly designed so that they work well for everyday life. Space is important so contemporary, urban gardens consist of clean, geometric lines, simple but effective designs and minimal, fuss free planting.

We have put together a guide with some small garden design ideas so you can make the most of the plot or balcony that you have.

Go potty

Where space is at a premium, a pot is a great way of adding the option to grow. They are particularly useful for those that have patios or decking that make it hard to dig down. Container gardening is also great for the generation of house movers who can simply pick up the pots and move on.

Planting in lots of different sized containers can give your garden a sense of perspective. Cluster large pots with smaller containers to add interest and create a plant display with height and structure. Why not try our Orson Cylinder Terracotta Planters with with evergreen shrubs such as box balls, skimmias, hebes, ivy which will contrast against the planter’s earthy tone or colourful shrubs in our Loudon Glazed Planters to create a statement against walls or beside doors.

Plant upwards

Using a planter is an ideal way to add greenery to your space, no matter how small. A vertical garden is a simple way to transform your small outdoor spaces while boosting shade, beauty, and privacy.

There are several vertical gardening options to consider if your humble garden is space challenged. Our Decorative Metal Garden Arch With Feather Design can provide the support needed for flowering plants and vines or if you are a grow your own enthusiast - peas, grapes, and tomatoes.

Or another small garden idea is to plant climbers in raised beds and train on trellises to make the most of the space. Jasmine and roses are both easy plants to grow and will provide delightful colour and scent.

A great way to maximise plant space is to create a living wall which is particularly apt for smaller garden plots. Plant our range of Metal Wall Planters with evergreens, hardy perennials, grasses and succulents to create great displays hanging from a wall or fence outdoors.

Space saving seating

Gardens are now seen as the fifth room of the house with garden furniture sales soaring and providing an extra living room in the summer sun. If you don’t have a big space in your garden you can still make a functional and beautiful seating area for everyday enjoyment.

If you want to create a relaxing seating area for your small garden, foldaway furniture or a little table won't take up too much of the patio and garden space. Our Richmond Round Garden Dining Table and Chairs Set is contemporary in style and the table 1m in size.

The Eucalyptus Repton Outdoor Bistro Set folds down and is the perfect size for patio and terrace spaces, coming in a cool grey, natural wood tone for a beautiful, unique finish.

Adding fire pits or patio heaters to your garden will extend the use of the seating area in the colder months, making your small outdoor space usable all year round. The Hoole Cesta Steel Fire Basket and Hoole Enebro Cast Iron Chiminea Log Burner both have small footprints but add a fantastically warm focal point for evening gatherings. The Luna Outdoor Electric Steel Heater also will sit comfortably in a corner spot, providing a cosy ambience for summer evenings.

Divide into zones

A trick in landscape design is to divide a garden into zones to make the overall space seem larger. Using structures like arches and trellises work well, with our Decorative Songbird Garden Arch beautifully framing entrances and walkways or providing a classic divide for different spaces.

Using bamboo screens, hedging, metal screening, will make the garden feel bigger, because you can’t see everything in one go and areas have been concealed. This could include a dedicated area for seating distinguished by a patio or decking, a play area marked with turf or a bench in a secluded area. Using partitions to create different areas will help add interest to your garden, whilst adding an illusion of more space.

Light and reflection

If your small garden doesn't get much sun, we recommend something to lighten up the dark corners and define the boundary of the space.

Installing a mirror along a garden wall or fence will reflect both the plant foliage and the sky, creating the illusion of a bigger and extra space. An oversized antique mirror like our St Simon Large Garden Window Mirror will not only add visual interest but make the space feel bigger.

Outdoor lighting plays a significant role in the appearance of your garden, creates a sense of depth and highlights architectural features at dusk. Use our LED Solar Spotlights to uplight plants and bushes or our 200 LED Solar String Lights to highlight trees or emphasise the height and silhouettes of garden structures.

*Ipsos Mori for HTA, 2018

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