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would anyone like to help me design my garden? its a blank canvass now!

(12 Posts)
ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Fri 08-Feb-13 22:59:16

Don't fall into the trap of thinking that having the garden laid mainly to lawn means low maintenance - lawn needs, per square metre, more effort than flower borders, in my experience!

Also, if you have all your planting at the bottom of the garden, it will create the illusion of the garden being shorter than it is, because the eye will immediately be drawn to the bottom of the garden. That is considered to be Bad Design. If you have a few eye-catching things at the side of the garden - you could have little semi-circular beds if you don't want borders running the length of the garden - it will make the garden feel larger.

Assuming your kitchen overlooks the garden, make sure you have something lovely outside the kitchen window to lift your spirits when you are doing the washing up!

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 08-Feb-13 22:56:11

thanks miss - i was thinking of something like an oriental maple or a flowering cherry tree....nothing huge at all.

i need to measure the plot but i cant walk on the grass now its been turfed!
i will get measurements and post....

Missbopeep Fri 08-Feb-13 22:52:13

What size is your plot? width x length?

Don't put trees in that will grow too big- we inherited a garden with trees and have spent literally £££s having to have them professionally removed. Previous owners didn't appreciate how big they would grow.

In a normal suburban garden you don't want anything with a height of more than 15 feet -ish and a spread of around 6-8 feet- but of course this depends on the size of the plot. And remember they will cast shade so not a lot will grow underneath when tree is full leaf- some plants will but they will have to tolerate dry shade.

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 08-Feb-13 21:30:39

thank you!

i will get googling....

i want some trees, and some shrubs. its quite a nice size garden that could take a few trees that werent too huge.....

Missbopeep Fri 08-Feb-13 18:50:44

Oh and some evergreens will give you something all year round- especially small shrubs .

Missbopeep Fri 08-Feb-13 18:50:04

Have a look here for some ready made garden plant combinations

The most important thing in your garden is structure- think of it like your haircut- the clothes and make up are secondary smile

Do you want curves? Most boring gardens have a rectangular or square lawn.

Think about
-round lawn with curved borders around
- kidney shaped lawn
- lawn with a trellis half way down at either side so you create a walk ways with an arch over maybe
-get some height- don't just line the borders with flowers use climbing shrubs like honey suckle, clematis, roses and so on to give another dimension.

Then think seasons:

bulbs for spring
perennials and annuals for summer
Autumn bulbs and foliage

The think colour- do you want hot or cool and pastel?

Alan Titchmarsh's How to be a Gardener books 1 & 2 are worth looking at.

LadyMud Fri 08-Feb-13 11:26:18

Okay, but I must stress that mine is essentially a "non-gardener's garden" at the moment, although I hope it will eventually develop into something more sophisticated!

I've pm'd you with a link to my photos and full Plant List on
I bought most of them last March, from my local garden centre (with a 5 year guarantee wink )

My shrubs (mainly hardy, evergreen and suitable for beginners) include:
Ceanothus impressus "Puget Blue"
Ceanothus thyrsiflorus "Victoria"
Choisya ternata
Choisya ternata "Sundance"
Coprosma "Lemon & Lime"
Escallonia "Iveyi"
Euonymus fortunei "Emerald & Gold"
Euonymus japonicus "Green Rocket"
Euonymus japonicus "Pierrolino"
Juniperus chinensis "Stricta"
Leptospermum scoparium "Winter Cheer"
Leucothoe axillaris "Curly Red"
Leucothoe fontainesiana "Scarletta" (aka Zeblid)
Lonicera nitida "Baggesen's Gold"
Osmanthus heterophyllus "Goshiki"
Photinia x fraseri "Pink Marble"
Photinia x fraseri "Red Robin"
Pieris japonica "Cupido"
Pieris japonica "Katsura"
Pieris japonica "Purity"
Sarcococca confusa

Then I planted some smaller things in the gaps (lavender, heucheras, various "rock roses") and finally some very low-growing "alpines" to carpet the ground, for example:
Thymes eg "Doone Valley","Silver Queen"
Sedums eg "Aureum", "Blue Carpet", "Coral Carpet"
Veronica repens

So, as I've said, I'm very much a beginner, and other Mumsnetters will be able to give you expert advice when needed . . . but I reckon some of these shrubs might suit your garden smile

ThatVikRinA22 Thu 07-Feb-13 22:13:49

very interested thank you ladymud - i am so in the dark it would be great to google and see what these things are and what they look like - also would be good to know how you have arranged them?

thank you!

LadyMud Thu 07-Feb-13 22:06:58

Vic, I'm pretty clueless too, but I've managed to create an attractive garden based on shrubs of different colours and textures, rather than focussing on flowers. It's fairly low maintenance, and looks good in winter too!

Things like Photinia, Pieris, Coprosma, Choisya and various types of Euonymus. I can let you have a detailed list, if you're interested smile

ThatVikRinA22 Thu 07-Feb-13 21:34:54

whoopee! right....

kids all grown up now - one at 15 one at uni so no kiddie toys required.

neither of us are gardeners so i was thinking something fairly easy and in patches....i do miss the tree though and want another - maybe just a small patch of trees/shrubs and colour at the end of the garden? i work shifts and DH works nights so really pushed for time....will leave most of it to lawn but do want some interest to look out on!

i am so not a gardener i have no idea what the difference is between cottage/trad/modern/ funky.....just want some interest and colour....its so plain now! its just grass and patio....
i dont mind spending money to save time (which is precious!)

i will get the measurements tomorrow and come back....thank you!

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Thu 07-Feb-13 21:21:45


What are you trying to create? What sort of garden do you like - traditional, cottage, modern/funky? What colour scheme do you want? Would you prefer to spend money to save time or spend time to save money?

How old are your children? Do you need to find space for swing/sandpit etc?

ThatVikRinA22 Thu 07-Feb-13 21:12:27

so, i will nip out and get measurements tomorrow - its not huge but its a nice size.

we have had it turfed and a patio done (well in process of) and so it now needs trees and plants.

i am totally clueless but i did find this site with lots of nurseries on it

so i have a very plain large lawn and a patio. thats it. i dont have much time to garden but we had a small patch at the bottom of the messy garden which had a tree, some shrubs and a rose - all diseased and all gone sad but i am keen to replace the tree as it looks so bare now, would like it mostly kept to lawn but it needs some plants/shrubs/trees. its south facing.

anyone up for a challenge?

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