How to make the most of a small outdoor area

fenceIn the summer months most of us want to be able to entertain outdoors, however this can be difficult if you have a small garden.

But you shouldn’t be too quick to dismiss a small garden for entertaining. Whether you want to simply enjoy a glass of wine outside, or have friends over for a barbecue, there are plenty of options available to bring a bit of light, colour and space to your outdoor living areas.

  • Make the most of any space you have by taking advantage of bare walls and hanging spaces. Hanging baskets, pots, and wall gardens will instantly brighten up a dreary space, and they don’t need to cost a lot of money or effort. You might even like to build a breakfast bar against one of your walls if there’s not a lot of room for outdoor dining.
  • Optimise any available garden beds.  If you’re in a small space, there might be a section of garden that rarely sees the sunlight.  Ferns are an obvious choice for shady areas; or if you’re after a splash of colour, bromeliads and clivias can look great against a green backdrop.
  • Just because a garden is small, doesn’t mean you can’t start your own herb or vegie garden.  Depending on what you want to grow, you might only need a windowsill or a bit of room on the balcony. Choose herbs and plants that are likely to thrive in small places, your local garden nursery will have advice on what is best.
  • If you have kids then you should take this into account when planning your garden space. Sure, a small courtyard may not lend itself to an exploratory haven for the kids to get lost in, but you can still add a little bit of outdoor fun.  A small sandbox could be great for toddlers, or a small cubby house or tee-pee might be fun too.  Kids also enjoy helping to grow things outside, so pick a small tree or plant that they can help look after and watch grow.

With a bit of creativity and design know-how, there’s likely to be plenty of ways you can turn your small garden into an area you love spending time in. If you don’t have any ideas of your own, remember you can always call in the help of a professional landscape designer to help you turn the space into something you’ll love.