It was another great episode for series 4 – here’s what we learned from the show this week. Plus find out what plants we used to make the most of smaller spaces!
1 Small gardens are tricky
This was the smallest garden we’ve ever done on the show, but I know that it’s a reality for so many people. I hope we showed that a lack of space does not stop you having a great garden!
The main thing to remember is to use less hard landscaping materials – two or three will suffice. And don’t fill it with small features! They make it feel disjointed and cluttered. Choose a couple of big, complementary features for much more impact.
2 There’s no such thing as too many flowers
Everyone loves flowers, and you can fill your garden with them very easily. It’s not just about beds and borders – plant them in pots, ponds and crevices in walls and patios. For height, try climbers, window boxes and vertical walls. And don’t forget the front garden!
Plus mix annuals in with your perennials. Annuals are great for instant colour and they are smaller than established perennials, so they don’t compete for root space in the soil. We used poppies, cosmos, nemesia, geraniums and petunias.
3 You can do lots with a balcony garden
No space is too small to host a garden! Make it immersive by putting plants and flowers all around you – in containers, up walls and on the floor too! Follow my tip for stunning windowboxes – make holes in the lining and push plants through it to get overflowing colour! Trailing plants like ivy or petunia surfinia are also great for wall containers.
With smaller spaces, simplicity is key. Stick to a simple colour palette, and choose a range of flowers and foliage that complement each other.
4 It’s easy to attract butterflies
They make a great addition to any garden, and the good news is that they love flowers! We used sedum, salvia, lavender, dianthus and philadelphus on the show, but the choice is huge! Butterflies also love thrift, phlox, catmint, marigolds, wallflowers and buddleja, obviously!
You can also attract them by making a feeder that mimics the nectar they love so much. Find out how here.
5 Put plants on the roof too
I loved the green roof on the shed! It’s a great way to naturalise your garden structures and improves the view from the bedroom window. Choose low-growing plants that will withstand any wind up there, such as sedum, saxifrage and other alpines.
Follow Alan’s advice and drench the root ball before you plant them – it will ensure they don’t dry out!
Looking for the garden features? Check out the Love Your Garden blog for our amazing suppliers and the products we used.
David Domoney is a Chartered Horticulturalist, Broadcaster, and Author. David has worked with a number of the UK’s leading garden retailers as a plant buyer and strategic consultant. With more than 30 years experience, in horticulture, David is as passionate about plants now as he was when he bought his first plant at a village fete.