Your garden is a hub of life and yet provides a place for tranquillity and quiet reflection.
To really make the most of your garden as somewhere to unwind and relax, soundproofing it from external noise and interruptions is key. Here’s how:
Keeping your garden private is a really important step for feeling like you can make it into a green oasis. For some, this means wood fence panels, but dense green hedging can offer something more. As an absorbent sound barrier, hedging is ideal for keeping traffic noise or neighbourly commotion to a minimum.
Box and yew are two hedging options that deliver destiny due to their thick foliage. Other dense hedgerow, such as Thuja plicata ‘Atrovirens’, can be fast-growing and this particular plant has emerald green foliage which is very striking.
Don’t feel, however, that hedging is your only option for a soundproof screen. The swish of trees and long grasses offer uplifting acoustics which can help to drown out other sounds sources and they look really dynamic and beautiful.
Else, why not try planting up bamboo, which will softly rustle as the wind passes through it and will still offer some privacy screening.
Adding a permanent structure onto your land will not only absorb external sound sources but can be a real space saver.
A garden shed, for instance, strategically placed to conceal a view into your garden can also be effective at filtering any unwanted hustle and bustle from outside your home. At all costs, you want to avoid an empty plot if noise pollution is a concern.
If you’re growing vertically, a garden wall can be transformed by growing on it vertically, thus converting the sound-reflective surface of the brick with soft, sound-absorbent greenery. Try trailing cucumbers, chilli peppers or tomatoes for a productive growing space.
Or, for ornamental interest, climbers like clematis are a low-key plant that can grow on a wooden trellis in any area of the garden.
Finally, if your garden is quite flat, you might consider creating some raised beds or mounds. Growing on an incline is really great for maximising space as it increases the area and, at the same time, prevents sound from reverberating quite as much—which occurs most in empty spaces.
Soundscape your garden to your liking by using accessories to help. Water features, like fountains, are so relaxing to listen to and do a great job of drowning out traffic noise.
You might decide to buy a self-contained unit from the garden centre which are quite easy to set up or add a pump to your existing pond.
Another easy win is wind chimes—just make sure that your neighbours don’t mind them sounding throughout the day (and night) first.
One of the free soundtracks our gardens can offer is that of the birds and bees. Though it can take some time to see results, making wildlife-friendly choices can really attract in an abundance of birds, bees, insects and mammals.
I think that the morning chorus of wild birds can be incredibly emphatic and it makes a great solution to any noise pollution you might have.
So, when in need of a soundproof garden space, there are many options available and you can design your plot to work best for you. Done right, you’ll be left with a green oasis that both enthralls and unwinds you when you’re in need of a little quiet TLC.
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.
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