Articles, Blog

Small Garden Ideas Pt 2 – Top tips for tiny gardens and awkward small spaces

October 12, 2019

Hi I am Rachel Mathews from Successful Garden
Design. And this is the second part in our series on small space gardening. So in today’s
video we’re going to look at what you can do with small and really, really tiny spaces.
So if you’ve got an awkward corner, or somewhere that’s just so small that you don’t even
think it’s even possible to do anything with then this video is for you. So in the small space on the stairs, as you go down the breakfast room at Casa Aire De Lecrin, they have this
little grouping of geraniums both in pots on the floor and hanging from the wall, but
what makes this work is actually the structure they’ve put in. The pots and little features
bring it all together, so that it is not just the plants. So as simple as this is, it’s
not just a few plants been plant down. There has a lot of thought go into it. From the
monochromatic colors scheme right down to the ornaments and structure that provide the
interesting backdrop to the planting, and then when you get down to the breakfast area
even the tiniest of corners like this one, have a group for planting. And what makes
this work is that there is different levels within the planting. So there is layers, and
because it’s going up, it draws the eye up. And again very subtle colors here, but
they’re not just relying on the plants. You’ll notice that sort of wrought iron
gateway and also the driftwood behind the planting that, solid structure does create
a nice amount of interest. And then as we look around the breakfast area, and the poolside
bit you can see again, whenever there is a group of plants, there is structure there
in layers and just taking the eye up makes all the difference as you can see here. And
even on the ground in this very small garden, this mosaic draws the interest, and the very
tiny pieces within it make that little space look much larger. Whenever you use smaller
materials, you need a lot more often to fill the space, so your eye will automatically
think, ahh lots of something makes the space big, so it’s very good way to create the
illusion of space. Now in the first video I asked you a bit of a trick question, what
is it about this planting that I wanted you to notice? Well, the answer is look how few
plants have been used in this garden. There is what, we got one, two, three, four, five,
six in pots and just sneaking out we can see a vine. So that’s seven plants. How many
gardens do you know that can look this good with just seven plants? So that’s what I
wanted to draw your attention to. How important design elements are. The plants are the finishing
touch, the icing on the cake if you like. You know in so many books and magazines and
blog articles all you read about is plants, plants, plants. Now I am not saying they are
not important, of course they are very important, but if you take into account the design elements,
first and foremost, and then add the plants that’s when the real magic happens. And
that is my mission at Successful Garden Design, to get you thinking further than just the
plants and starting to think about design and the impact it can make in your garden.
Cause I absolutely promise you if you think about the design elements and not just the
plants, it makes a tremendous difference. And actually it makes creating a beautiful
garden so much easier. But I’ll show you much more tips and tricks on how to incorporate
design into your gardens in future videos. So for now, let’s continue now with our
_ (3:38) tour of the small gardens in Southern Spain. And moising on out from the Casa the
next door neighbor has an even tinier garden- and this balcony garden, as you can see it’s
absolutely crammed full of geraniums and again they’ve been very clever by using a limited
color palette and that has created that abundant, glorious look and it has the impact because
they’ve just gone for one or two variations on the same color. And that’s been a very
clever use of such a tiny space. Now going a little further a field, the city of Cordoba
is well known for patio gardens where as you can see people just litter their walls with
brightly colored plants. Again very compact color scheme, and again this works well because
it leads the eye up. So you’re really thinking the space so much bigger because of the vertical
element. And they’re very cunning. You’ll notice there is no marks down the walls. They
have the pots, there is a little wedge behind them where they keep them away from those
lovely white walls. And they’re watering them very precisely. Apparently, they have
an albeit bean can or something on the end of a bamboo pole. So each pot gets exact the amount
of water in each, and therefore there is no wastage or no masses running down the walls.
And moving onto the narrow streets of Frigliana, they have loads of gardens. Well in fact,
people have no gardens, they just use the street as you do. And again collections of
pots and it looks beautiful- so you can have as little or as many you’d like. So hope
today’s video has inspired you to do something with your small space. And that you can see
that size doesn’t really matter it’s what you do with it that counts. And if you have
any suggestions for future videos, do drop me a line on the contact form at the

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