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Very narrow garden- is there any way it could work/have you got one?

(13 Posts)
SadPander Tue 30-Jul-13 13:51:23

I'm talking really narrow here! We viewed a new build (converted old buildig into terrece houses) and according to the plans our garden was going to be lovely. In reality it seems that about half of it has been 'stolen' to create the allocated parking area.

Aside from the fact that this means there is currently a wall being built almost directly outside the patio doors ! - which is another thread altogether - can a really narrow garden work? If you have one have you managed to create any optical illusions to make it look better?

It was just a building site really so we couldn't go into the garden, or the specific house we want, so was hard to get an idea of the exact size (we are going back next week when we should be able to get into the garden and house to look at the garden better). I'd guess thought that the garden would be 15ft wide max (possibly as narrow as 10ft) by about 40-50ft long. So essentially the garden only spans about half of the house. Is there anyway this wont look ridiculous?? Really want the house but have 2 cats and expecting first baby, so I had lovely visions of everyone running around in a nice big garden!

bizboz Tue 30-Jul-13 14:12:30

I live in a fairly small terraced house and the garden is about 15ft wide by 30ft long. One corner of that is taken up by an extension to the house (utility room) so in reality it's even smaller. We've found it plenty big enough, even with two young children. We have a patio area with table and chairs, bbq (large!), pots, playhouse and sandpit. We also have space for a swing, slide and small trampoline and for the children to play with toy cars etc. And it doesn't take long to mow the lawn! It probably wouldn't be big enough for a proper game of football, but we have a park quite nearby. Is there any other green space nearby.

ps We also used to have a cat. She wasn't at all bothered by the size of our garden as she just wandered off around the neighbourhood.

SadPander Tue 30-Jul-13 15:05:55

Thanks Bizbiz, that is a nice, positive response! I'm not sure if there are any parks nearby but its a village with a lot of nature walks and woods about, so there would be the opportunity for them to play out when older. I think if its 15ft i can cope, but I think this is the max possible and is likely to be more like 10ft-13ft, hopefully it will be easier to visualise next week when the space is less of a building site. I jut have a vision of a long, silly looking strip of grass at the moment!

The cats are currently house cats, so I'm sure they will be appreciative of any outdoor space really, thought I may try to fence them in to stop wandering if pos as they aren't that streetwise!

SadPander Tue 30-Jul-13 15:06:26

Sorry I meant bizboz

Periwinkle007 Tue 30-Jul-13 21:05:44

I think if you plan it out carefully you can make it work and any outside space is worth having. Avoid having it as one long strip of grass if that isn't what you want, split it up into zones so as you go down the garden it has different purposes, add some shape into it so perhaps make the lawn curved or a little path but don't make it straight. I know very little about garden design but I am sure you will find some tips on the internet on how to make a thin garden look wider. I assume no deep beds on either side but perhaps little shaped beds jutting out into the garden? don't know. I will have a google now out of curiosity.

Periwinkle007 Tue 30-Jul-13 21:52:54

ok now you would need to adapt some of these to include a lawned area as I am sure that is important to you with having children but you could put the lawn at one end and then use some of these ideas to change the look of the rest from being a long thin space to interesting. Some of these are obviously wider than yours sounds like it will be but the same ideas to create an illusion of a wider garden will work presumably. they say to avoid a straight path as that makes it look longer so have a wavy one and offset to one side from what I can see with shrubs etc down one side of it jutting in and out to give the illusion of a wider more lush space.

sounds like diagonal lines are good - click on each and there are photos and more info, this one in particular might give ideas

sorry - I got a bit carried away now. I love gardens although as I say I know very little about them. All these things must look expensive but they don't have to be, it is more about the ideas. you don't have to do anything concrete, you could start just with some plants in pots to mark out some bits down the side to change it from long and straight to being a bit more wavy down the side, things like lavender are good for that (I am a big fan of lavender, rosemary, ceanothus bushes, heucheras for colour and hebe bushes. All provide year round greenery or colour and can normally be found pretty cheaply and grow well, requiring very little work. don't forget you can probably get cuttings off other people if you know how to do them (or they do - ask on gumtree or somewhere, often gardeners are happy to help people as they are so enthusiastic)

hope that helps with a few ideas and reassures you it won't just be a long silly space.

PigletJohn Tue 30-Jul-13 23:05:39

you will never be far from your neighbours.

If like me you used to have a fine figure you may find your neighbours or their friends ogling you in the garden and making cheery remarks if you are working shirtless.

K8Middleton Tue 30-Jul-13 23:10:21

Zones are a good idea. As is adding height with raised beds and borders and having the garden go somewhere such as a trampoline, veg patch or dining area. A stepping stone path down the middle makes things look wider. I don't know why.

Jaynebxl Tue 30-Jul-13 23:19:48

Is the garden narrower than the house?

jinglebellmel Wed 31-Jul-13 13:59:05

Wow thanks Periwinkle loads of great ideas there, and I love lavender so will definitely be having lots of this!

Piglet I may have neighobours worth ogling so not all bad!

K8 Thanks, I know what you mean about the path, all about optical illusions I think.

Jayne Yes I am guessing (but will know more on Monday) that the garden starts the full width of the house, about 21ft, then very quicky narrows to about half the width of the house. So the area that is full width is probably only about 3 ft long, and the narrow part about 40ft-50ft long. Does that make sense? Its a really badly planned lay out, which i think is due to planning insiting that the allocating parking area has a turning area and that there is a path from the back of the other gardens to the parking area, all fo this is what is eating into our (potential) garden. It really was a shock when we saw it as such a ridiculous lay out!

PigletJohn Wed 31-Jul-13 23:35:37

I hope the substantial price reduction makes it worthwhile.

When you move out it will be harder to sell.

jinglebellmel Thu 01-Aug-13 16:28:13

Oh piglet Its a nightmare, they actually put the price up by £25k a week or two ago! I am concerned about how it would be to sell, but may not be a problem after all as despite us not being allowed to view it yet and the agent knowing we are interested it has gone STC on righmove! Could be for the best i suppose, but so little about where we live that we would consider (hence considering this awful garden!) so back to the drawing board!

PigletJohn Thu 01-Aug-13 19:33:03

drawing board it is, then

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