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Help me do something, anything with our garden please

(9 Posts)
MsIngaFewmarbles Wed 05-Mar-14 12:59:00

It's a mess. It's north facing. It's overlooked by at least 10 houses and offices. It's small. It has clayish soil. We have young kids and dogs. I just want it to be a nice place to be and for the kids to play. Also we rent so I don't want to spend a fortune but don't mind a bit of cost.

woodrunner Wed 05-Mar-14 13:38:40


You can make the most of the shade by planting big ferns and hydrangeas in pots. I'd get a trampoline for the DC, or a sand pit or similar, so there's a reason for them to go out there. Plant something scented that can scramble up the walls - a rose or honeysuckle maybe. Or a long-season flowering clematis, passionflower or abutilon. Maybe put some pots of herbs near the garden door. Mint is shade-tolerant, and there are loads of varieties of it - chocolate and lemon mints as well as peppermint etc. The DC will like the smell, and mint loves to be watered - an activity for DC. You could do rows of sunflowers in pots along the sunny end wall. DC can plant them and watch them grow. They really cheer up a garden.

If you can get some garden furniture - a table and chairs, a BBQ, chiminea or similar, then you might be more likely to use the garden more too.

Most of these suggestions are for things you can take with you when you leave.

MsIngaFewmarbles Wed 05-Mar-14 14:30:05

I like the ideas for scrambling plants, the fences and walls are very harsh. will google the plants you have mentioned, I have planted bulbs before but I have very little experience of gardening. I'm willing to give it a go though. Would I need to put wires or something on the walls or fences to train them to go up?

What herbs other than mint like shade? I would love herbs by the back door but wasn't sure if they would grow.

I'm not suer where we could put furniture or a trampoline as there really isn't much room, but maybe we could move one of the bike tents to the front garden?

Pannacotta Wed 05-Mar-14 20:09:34

Could you try your local Freecycle for free plants?
Freestanding shrubs are easier than climbers which would need wires on the fences. If you plant something fast growing and evergreen in front of the shed that will help screen the garden from the road. Bamboo would work but they are quite pricey.

You can grow Mint in pots which would be nice close to your back door but most other herbs like the sun.

I would get a bench (or a table and chairs) and put that at the end of the garden to make the most of the sun.

Pannacotta Wed 05-Mar-14 20:11:32

And agree that sunflowers in pots might be worth doing, very cheap from seed and would give some height and privacy.
Can offer some more plant suggestions if you can give an idea of budget.

Damnautocorrect Wed 05-Mar-14 20:24:16

Wilkinsons have some lovely pots at the moment, don't forget you can paint them. Pinterest have loads of lovely ideas.
What about those box pots with trellice behind? Some nice climbing stuff and you can take it with you?
Like these? But I've seen them cheaper

Mum2Fergus Wed 05-Mar-14 21:00:12

Those sail type things would give you privacy and a bit of shelter...

MsIngaFewmarbles Fri 07-Mar-14 10:48:10

Sorry I have been trying to get on with my essay smile

Could I just put the pots on the existing flower bed? A 'fence' of sunflowers would be amazing on that side to block the road a bit, great idea thank you, could I plant them now?

I will get a rambling rose for the back wall of the house as I think it would make it look so much nicer, I don't mind putting some wire up, I can manage that.

Thank you all, some fantastic ideas.

Damnautocorrect Wed 12-Mar-14 10:12:49

Someone with actual knowledge will probably correct me but I thought of you when I was in lidl. They have weed preventing blanket and bark. I'd be inclined to wack that down under?? Or grass seed upto the pots

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