What would you do with this? (With photo)(9 Posts)
I moved into a doer-upper almost 4 years ago and have spent so much time and effort on the inside, the garden has been totally neglected.
I’m desperate to get it into a decent state for the summer but am at a total loss what to do with it and don’t have the budget to bring someone in and sort it all out for me.
The many issues include the ugly, sunken patio (not sure what’s causing this but I’m guessing it will be expensive to fix) and the messy ivy hedge which I think originates from my next door neighbour’s garden – which is in an even worse state than mine. The left side is technically my responsibility so what can I do if the out of control bushes are on my neighbour’s land? He’s an absent landlord and no chance of getting the tenants to do anything with it.
So for those of you more green-fingered than me, if this garden was yours and your budget was small, what would you do?
With a small budget I'd probably focus on clearing the green bit beyond the patio and planting a mini veg garden. Or, get some cheap containers and sneak a peek at what your neighbours have to suss out what grows well.
Work out where your garden gets the most sun. That’s ideally where you want your patio to be.
For a quick fix, i’d cut back the neighbour’s intruding bushes as far as you can. You’re legally allowed to cut anything overhanging your side.
Mow the lawn.
Invest in some kind of garden store or small shed to tidy up tools & your loose plant pots.
Then plant up the containers you have with something colourful.
If you bought a couple of packets of bedding plant seeds and compost now you could get quite a few plants for a small investment.
have a look through the seed selection in your garden centre for something you like.
Borrow a jet wash to clean the patio, ditch any rubbish, prune hedges and clear out any dead plants in pots and get new compost.
Have a look for perennial plants that are going cheaply that you could put in your pots or flower beds.This is a good strategy throughout the year.
Supermarket Rosemary, chives and Thymes are about £1.50 and transplant really well into planters.
After the summer, you could plant some spring bulbs so that you had colour this time next year.
No 1 throw away everything you don't want to keep, and get rid of the clutter.
No 2 sweep everywhere you can, pull up dead stuff and generally tidy up.
No 3 cut the grass, and then keep cutting it every few days, any weeds will soon die off that way. And see if you can uncover a path, there might be one buried under there somewhere!
No 4 beg borrow or steal a hedge trimmer and trim back the overgrown stuff, so you can see more clearly whose land the plants are on. Normally you have to offer trimmings back to the owner but if it is rented, then the tenants probably won't be bothered.
No 5 buy a few nice cheap flowering plants from a supermarket and put them in containers on the patio.
No 6 check out freecycle, ebay or your local paper and see if you can get hold of some garden chairs cheap or even free.
No 6 collapse in a heap!
Oh, I forgot...
No 7 don't be in too much of a hurry to get rid of plants until you know what they are, which might not be until they flower. You don't want to have to buy stuff to replace nice plants you already have
I definitely agree- don't dig stuff out because it looks a bit dull or straggly now. Tidy up the area around the plant but don't have a go at the plant itself if you don't know what it is. Give it a feed - use nettles for "chop and drop" if they make a guest appearance.
I have beautiful wild geraniums that look dull as anything now but utterly glorious later on.
Thank you everyone for the suggestions. I think a big problem is that I just feel totally daunted by it but reading through some of the posts broken down into smaller jobs makes it feel more doable. First step, several trips to the dump!
Actually it isn't a bad space at all.
getting rid of loads of rubbish would really help.
apart from the lawn and hedges etc which people have already mentioned, you could pain that wall. Paint it white, put the pots in front of it instead of on top and plant up cheap and cheerful.
A pp said buy seeds for bedding plants, but really unless you are committed to making seeds work, you woudl be better off buying small plants in late april and filling a few pots. Things like petunias are bright, colourful and easy, as long as you water them.
The bigger th epots the better as they dry out too quickly if small.
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