For people who love plants, a small garden is a curse. But it shouldn’t be. The following are tips to maximize the use of a small yard, where less is more and more is easily achieved.
Who doesn’t dream of an English estate with groves and gardens and koi ponds? Or perhaps you prefer the ultimate American playground with a pool and a grill? With 80 percent of us living in urban areas, however, the reality is most of us have a small garden.
But don’t despair, even those of us with modest outdoor spaces can take steps to make them a little more grand.
1. Think Big, then Drill Down (a.k.a: Prioritize)
My husband is always pushing to add one more thing to our small Cape Cod plot. At any given time he’s wanted a patio, a kitchen garden, an orchard, a hot tub, and a sandbox for the kids. (This last was my favorite, since we live across the street from the beach!)
I get it. All those things would be great, IF we had a large yard. But a small yard simply can’t be all things to all people. Cramming too may “amenities” into a minimal space results in disordered, cluttered chaos. So the first thing to do when faced with a small garden is to decide what you absolutely can’t live without—an outdoor entertaining space; a kitchen garden; a playground—and make that the priority.
2. Make a Plan
Now that you have your priorities straight, make a plan. Hire a landscape architect or garden designer to help execute your vision in the most efficient manner. There are also many apps and websites to assist you in creating a layout. Even a simple sketch will do. With a plan in hand, you will be able to make the most of your small outdoor space. You may even find you actually have room for that hot tub.