How to Make Your Garden Your Favourite Place on Earth

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Celebes Grey Rattan Effect Garden Lounge Set 3 Seater Sofa Footstool from Click Style (affiliate link)

Today, I am talking about garden improvements. Nearly 90% of UK homes have a garden, which means that the vast chunk of UK residents get to enjoy the outdoors without leaving their property. However, while they have the opportunity to do that, it doesn’t mean that everyone takes advantage of this. In fact, most people fail to make the most of their gardens. Now that is probably due to the UK weather, which doesn’t always encourage us to spend time outside. 

In any case, with a little time and effort, it’s more than possible to create a garden that you genuinely love, and which you can all year round. Let’s look at some of the garden improvements you can make. Get started today, and it won’t be long before you have an enviable garden that’s the best in the neighbourhood.

Garden Improvements to Help You Fall in Love With Your Garden

Clear It Out

If you haven’t touched your garden in a long time, then there’s every chance that it’s overgrown and has been collecting rubbish. Your garden will be a magnet for debris, especially during the autumn and winter months, when all those trees drop their leaves. So step one in our list of garden improvements is to have a good old clearout. You can fill bin bags with waste and take them to the tip, or you can hire a skip and have someone else take it away for you. It all depends on how much there is to clear away. Once it’s empty, you’ll have a much better sense of the possibilities of the space. 

Plan It Out

It’s possible to create an outstanding garden by taking an ad-hoc approach, but it’s unlikely. By putting together a plan, you’ll be much more likely to guarantee victory. You don’t have to iron out all of the details at the start, of course. So this is the next of our garden improvements. This simply involves thinking about the general aesthetic and ambience that you want your garden to have. For instance, will it be a place for wildlife to enjoy, or will it be an outdoor living space that you use to entertain guests? Or perhaps it’ll be a combination of the two. Or maybe it’ll be used to grow flowers and vegetables.

Work With a Landscaper

Photo by Shaun Donnelly on Unsplash

It can take a lot of work to make a garden beautiful, especially if it’s a medium or large-sized garden. You might need help to make the most of a large garden. Unless you have a green thumb and plenty of time on your hands, you’ll probably find that it’s best to work with a landscaper. They’ll know exactly what your garden needs and in which proportions, and — most important of all — they’ll be able to make it happen.

Wherever you live, there’ll certainly be a landscaper available to work with, though be sure to check reviews beforehand since quality can vary widely. Just because someone says they can create a wonderful garden for you, that doesn’t necessarily make it so!

My husband has a garden maintenance company and all of his work comes from word-of-mouth recommendations. He doesn’t even have a website because he doesn’t need one. So ask around amongst the people you know, or if you’re brave enough, knock on the door of a house whose garden you admire and ask them for their gardener’s contact details. But be prepared to wait a while if you want someone who is highly recommended. Their schedules fill up fast, especially when in the spring and summer months when everyone is thinking about garden improvements.

Learn Some Basic Gardening Skills

Photo by Carl Tronders on Unsplash

Unless you’re extremely flush with cash, it’s unlikely that you can hire a landscaper on a permanent basis. They’re usually used to get the garden into shape, and then perform periodic touch-ups. To keep your garden looking great all year round, it’ll be best to learn some basic gardening skills. This won’t just allow you to keep it in tip-top condition, but it’ll also allow you to enjoy your garden in a different way. There’s a lot of satisfaction that comes from admiring a garden that you know you’ve helped to make so beautiful! 

If the regular maintenance is too much for you, you can contract this work out to a garden maintenance company. This is exactly what my husband does. He visits his clients’ gardens on a regular basis, whether that’s weekly or monthly and keeps everything under control. He cuts back the shrubbery, trims the hedges, strims the grass, cuts down trees if necessary and even jet washes the patios, paths and decking. He does all the garden improvements that keep people’s gardens looking well-kept.

Add a Cosy Seating Area

A teak corner garden sofa with grey cushions on a patio in the garden

Repton Teak Corner Garden Furniture Set from Gardenesque

All too often, you see gardens that look like they’ve been created just to be admired from afar. But when the sun’s shining, you’ll want to get right in there and enjoy it yourself. For that, you’ll need to add some seating, and by that, I mean more than just a fold-up chair that spends most of its life gathering dust in your garage.

These days, there’s a whole range of quality outdoor furniture available, and they’re often just as comfortable as the furniture you have in your living room. Add them, and you’ll be able to enjoy the summer months on an even deeper level. To diversify your relaxation, consider adding a hammock; they’re affordable and perfect for those lazy summer afternoon naps. 

Install Exterior Lighting

A back garden with cosy seating area lit up with outdoor festoon lights and other solar powered garden lights

Outdoor Garden Lighting from Sparkle Lighting

The sun won’t shine all day. Even on those long summer days, the light will begin to dim eventually. That’s usually the point at which people head indoors, but there’s magic in sitting outside once darkness has set in. The next of our garden improvements that will allow you to extend those evenings, is to add some exterior lighting. There’s an endless supply of affordable options these days. To ensure your garden is as eco-friendly as possible, select solar-powered lighting and save yourself the hassle of having to stock up on batteries.

Add a Summer House

A garden summer house at the bottom of the garden. A small seating area leads off from it with chairs, benches, a chimnea, festoon lights and some hurricane lanterns.

A summer house has been on my list of garden improvements for the longest time. By adding a summer house, you can create a relaxing reading nook, outside workspace, a creative studio for writing or drawing, or a just somewhere sheltered to enjoy your garden all year round. There are options available in all sizes, so whatever size garden you have, there’ll be a solution that’s perfect for your needs. Plus, since you can add insulation to these spaces, you’ll also get to enjoy the summer house in winter. 

Install a Water Feature

A water feature in a garden

Water dome 26″ in Portobello with brass dome from Solus Decor (affiliate link)

Have you ever walked into someone’s garden and felt an instant sense of calm and peace? It’s not magic — it’s just that they probably had a water feature. The sound of soft running water is extremely calming and soothing. Plus, it also invites wildlife such as birds, which has been shown to put us at ease. Installing a water feature does require a bit of work, but it’s worth it. There aren’t too many things more enjoyable than sitting out on a lovely spring morning, enjoying a cup of tea as you listen to the sound of running water and bird song. 

Our neighbour has a water feature and I really enjoy watching the birds come and go for their drinks and little swims through the summer months.

Create Year-Round Warmth

two young couples sat around a firepit in the garden with blankets. There are lanterns and Christmas lights in the background.

Plain Jane Fire Pit from FirepitsUK

Now, everyone knows that the UK is not the warmest place on the planet. In fact, this is probably why so many homeowners fail to make the same level of investment in their outdoor space as they do in their indoor space. It’s certainly why I haven’t invested in the outdoor sofas that I actually want. I don’t want them to sit outside getting battered by the bad weather for most of the year just so I can enjoy them for a few sunny weeks.

I may not have the sofas that I want, but I have certainly been able to extend the amount of time that we use the garden even when the weather isn’t as warm as we’d like (which, let’s be fair, is most of the time). By adding a firepit, you can definitely get more use out of your garden and the cost is minimal.

Bring the Inside Out

Rattan furniture on a jute rugs in the garden surrounded by a rattan screen, a rattan bookcase and lots of potted plants and pampas grass

Image Credit: The Natural Hire Company

A good way to make your outdoor space feel cosier is to add elements that you’d usually find indoors. I think the gardens that I see that make me want to spend the most time in them actually feel like an outdoor room. Bringing the inside out helps to blend the gap between the interior and exterior parts of your home.

This obviously works much better if you have a covered section, otherwise you risk all your cosy indoor touches getting wet. If you do, then look at adding mirrors, lighting, lots of cost cushions and blankets, maybe a sheepskin or two and definitely an outdoor rug. You could even add some wall art, and other decorative touches to the space. 

Increase the Privacy

Black composite fencing with decorative top panel with leaf pattern cut out provides privacy in the garden

Neva Modular Fencing system with Decorative 1/2 Fence panel from B&Q

You’ll only really feel at home in your garden if you have a sense that it’s a fully private space. After all, you couldn’t unwind in your living room if you had a sense that people were always peering through the curtains! So make an effort to increase your garden’s privacy credentials. For example, you could add a large hedge, get a few trees in the ground, add a covered section or install some screening. The idea is to simply “build up” the space so that no one could see in even if they wanted to. 

This is something that is high on our agenda. We have waist-high metal fences between our garden and the neighbours which gives us absolutely no privacy at all. Luckily we get on really well with our neighbour and spend hours chatting in the garden in summer. But it is certainly not ideal and we’re hoping to get some tall fencing installed shortly.

And that’s it! Those are my top tips for garden improvements that will help you to fall in love with your garden. Have you got any tips to add? If so, drop them in the comments below.

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