How to Make the Most of a Small Garden

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We've had all sorts of gardens with our family homes over the years; from wild and wonderful large spaces to more modest patio areas and what I've come to realise is that a garden can be beautiful and offer lots of potential, no matter it's size.

Garden space often comes at a premium and since moving to the South West of England, I've noticed in particular that many of the 'more affordable' houses only have very small gardens or courtyard spaces. Of course, there are advantages to this - smaller gardens tend to require less work and maintenance, which is handy if you don't have a lot of time or aren't that into gardening. With clever patio design and functional furniture, there are many ways you can make the most of a small garden space. Here are a few tips and ideas to get you started...

Decide what you want from your outdoor space

Before you start landscaping your small garden or heading out to the garden centre, you need to really think about what you want from your outdoor space. Are you hoping to dine alfresco in the summer time? Is grass an essential? Do you want to grow your own flowers or produce? Is attracting wildlife important to you? All of these questions need answers before you can get started on making your garden a beautiful and functional space.

Image credits: The Guardian // Sugar and Charm // Garden Requisites

Go light and bright

The rule for small interiors is always to paint them white or another light shade to give them appearance of being bigger and brighter - well, the same can apply for your garden! Paint your garden walls or fencing a light shade to create the illusion of a bigger space. If you're laying down a patio, choose slabs in a light stone colour and opt for minimalist garden furniture in a neutral or bright shade too. Whilst on the topic of furniture - it may be worth choosing pieces that can remain outside all-year-round, as small gardens often don't have sheds or garage space for storage.

Make a nature garden with plant pots

We're currently living in a rented property with a small, artificial lawn but it looks beautiful and full of nature and that's because of my mum's creative use of plant pots. Seeing as our garden lacks flower beds, she has instead bought various pots from local garden centres and dotted them around the garden. They, along with a couple of planters are filled with pretty coloured flowers and plants that add colour to what otherwise would be a very minimalist garden and attract all the butterflies and bees.

Take it off the ground

Alternatively, if you are really lacking space in your garden, you could always take your plants and flowers off the ground, creating the illusion of a larger plot. One way to do this could be to have hanging baskets attached to the wall of your home or window boxes full of beautifully coloured flowers. You may also want to consider using trellis to grow roses and other flowers up your fence. This will make a lovely visual feature for your garden and detract the attention from its actual size.

Attract nature with bird tables and boxes

Small gardens can be just attractive to birds and wildlife as larger gardens. We have a wooden bird table in our garden and get so many birds visiting for food every day. It makes the garden feel a lot more homely and natural and my little boy loves watching them. 

Image credits: Amara // Country Living // Grazia Daily

Make it cosy

Small gardens, patios and courtyards can be super cosy, so really play on that with your furniture, lighting and soft furnishing choices. I think fairy lights add such a lovely touch to courtyard gardens and make them look so whimsical. Cushions and throws on your garden chairs will add both colour and comfort and lanterns or candles, whilst practical for lighting. will also give your garden a romantic feel, perfect for alfresco dining in the summertime.

Do you have a small garden? How do you make the most of your space?

Megan x
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I have done my best to credit the images used in this post to the original owners (with links) but if I have used your photo and the credit is incorrect or you would not like your photo to be featured, please get in touch and I will make the necessary changes.
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