Making the Most of Limited Garden Space

Just because your garden is small doesn’t mean you can’t get creative with your space. Gardening has been a favourite hobby for decades with good reason! It is a great way to relax and be creative around your living space. For those of us green-thumbed gardeners with a small space to work with, there are useful tips that we can use to help make the most of our garden.

Tips for Small Gardens

Plan Ahead 

Creating an effective plan for your garden will provide you with a better understanding of the space and layout you have to work with. Making a list of the things you want your garden to have first, for example, a pond, then you can make sure to find the most appropriate size for your garden. Things you should consider include:

  • Environment - Different plant and flower species require specific conditions in order to flourish and grow. That is why it is always important, regardless of space, to look for species which are compatible with your environment. There are certain plants which grow in the shape that may be more useful for your garden if the majority of the space is often shadowed by your house or nearby buildings.


  • Plant size and shape - Plants come in a variety of shapes and sizes from miniature cacti to kentia plants. When you are working with a smaller garden space, it is best to avoid plants like vines which can easily take out your garden walls and furniture! You may also want to explore what tall plants are available to you as these require less floor space.


  • Maintenance - Another important decision to consider is the time you have to take care of your garden and maintain plant growth. Plants and flowers require watering, cutting, protection from predators, and more to live. Some will even need planting at specific times in the year due to conditions in the environment such as temperature. There are high and low maintenance plants to look after, therefore you should always research the type of plant you want beforehand. An example of a popular but high maintenance plan are most types of vines as they often need more care and maintenance as they can easily spread around the garden.


  • Resistance to disease and parasites - Similar to the above tip, you will need to consider what treatments you will use to prevent parasites and disease among your garden to ensure they live. A common nuisance is the common slug, they are infamous for their destruction of beautiful gardens feeding on flowers and plants leaving holes on the plants. You will need to find the right pesticide to prevent this. If you have pets, such as dogs and cats, you will need to check the specific products you are using as they could pose a threat to the health and safety of your animal. 


  • Garden ponds - Ponds complement planted gardens well but there are many things to consider with ponds. Are you going to keep live fish? Feeling more adventurous and wanting to add turtles to the pond? Do you want a flowing waterfall or lights to make the pond visible at night? All these different additions to a pond require extensive research and understanding. For smaller gardens, ponds with live fish and animals will be much more challenging as they often require a large volume of water depth and space for their welfare. Most turtles also need a basking spot (a warmer area) and areas to leave the water. They are more vulnerable to predators like foxes and birds when outdoors as well. Most turtles would not be appropriate to keep in the UK year-round outdoors due to the natural climate and colder temperatures across the UK. 


Add Levels

Levelling is when part of the garden is higher or lower than other sections. It is a handy gardening technique for homes with smaller outdoor space because it can section the garden into different areas. If you want to plant but need an area for children to play, levelling is an ideal solution. You can create a slightly higher level for your planting allowing the rest of the garden to be accessible for your children to play in. With higher levelling, the risk of accidental damage to plants is also minimised.


With this, some gardeners prefer to buy their own levelling tools to create their ideal garden design themselves. This may be easier when working with a smaller space. However, garden levelling can be complicated, and if you are wanting to meet a specific vision, it may be a better idea to contact a professional. This can be costly and if you are dealing with a small space, outright purchasing the right gardening tools and doing it yourself may be more cost-effective. 


Use Shelves

Garden shelves are a great way to maximise space and allow gardeners to have more plants at their home. Adding garden shelving to your space also makes for a new creative addition to the design. From different types of wood finishings and sizes to unusual shapes, there are a bunch of options to choose from. 

  • Pot racks are fun and quirky. They let you be creative as you can plant your flowers into a variety of pots to stack on the shelving unit. They look elegant and are a helpful way to protect your favourite plants from wildlife and your personal pets, such as rabbits. One thing to consider with pot racks is the maintenance involved as you will need to water each pot individually. Also, you may be more limited in your flower and plant options as some flourish more when they are not limited to a small amount of soil and space.


  • Bookshelf racks offer a modern design to the garden. They tend to be larger than most shelves, therefore offer you more space to add flowers and plants when space is limited. You can also add garden ornaments into the shelf to make the garden pop more. 


Make the Most of Your Verticals

There are endless numbers of vertical plants and flowers which are perfectly suited for small gardens. Tall plants will give the illusion of a more busy garden without the need for extra floor space! Some favourites include: 


  • Begonias  - These vibrant flowers can be found in an array of sizes and shapes. There are trailing, compact, variegated and more! These are perfect for vertical gardening and offer a pop of colour to the garden. 


  • Japanese Iris - These cute, colourful flowers thrive in vertical gardens as they’re a taller plant species. Their attractive blue colour makes them a favourite among the gardening community. 


  • Hoya - This Australian plant does well in shaded spots making it perfect for small gardens that are often covered by shadows from nearby buildings. Offering classic rich green leaves, they are a must-have in any garden. 


  • Orchids - We don’t really need to introduce this one. Orchids are renowned for their beauty and variations. They are a low maintenance flower making it a good starter flower for those new to the hobby. 

Gardening is a hobby everyone can enjoy by making use of the space they are given. There is no garden too big or too small, and every space can be made to flourish when you plan ahead. Gardening is a rewarding hobby, and with the right gardening tools, it can be a stress free experience. Discover our range of gardening machinery, maintenance and sharpening tools, and more today.