Over the past two years, Brits have gained a new appreciation of their gardens, more than ever before. But if your garden is on the small side, do you know how to make the most of your outdoor space and extend your living area onto your patio or balcony?
With the right design, even the smallest of terraced gardens can feel welcoming and provide a cosy space in which to relax and entertain guests. We’ve gathered together some of the best ideas for styling a bijou garden to inspire you to get creative with whatever space you have available.
Add a pretty window box
Window boxes require very little room and can be admired whether you are inside or outside.
They are ideal for injecting a burst of colour onto balconies – try trailing lobelia for a window box in a shady spot or opt for sun-worshipping verbena or geraniums if the flowers will be in full sunshine.
Add a splash of colour to a feature wall
Adding a feature wall in a colourful shade will help to bring outdoor living to life. Garden paint can be used on wood, bricks, stone, or plaster to add life to your patio and create a stunning backdrop for your plants and garden furniture.
We love the Rust-Oleum range of garden paints available in over a hundred colours so there is sure to be a shade to suit your style. For a sunny Mediterranean vibe, choose a fiery orange hue to make the greenery in your garden really pop.
Light up your space
Add a warm glow to a small space with bistro lighting to turn a cramped patio into a cosy one. As well as instant ambience, outdoor lights allow you to linger longer in the garden when the sun goes down.
A string of vintage-style lights adds elegance to any outdoor space – and this bulb string is solar-powered, so there is no need for mains power – just hang them from your fence, wall or pergola and sit back and relax into the evening.
Create a water feature
If you love the thought of having a pond in your garden, but think they are only for larger spaces, then think again. You can still add a relaxing water feature that bubbles away in a sunny corner and adds texture and interest to your patio.
Choose a tall, tiered water feature, such as this elegant cascading waterfall to maximise the space. It’s self-contained and has a small footprint plus underwater LED lighting, which adds a fairy-tale element to your garden as night falls.
Transform a blank wall into a gallery
Many of us hang our favourite pictures in our homes – but did you know that you can do the same in your garden?
Second-hand shops often sell wooden picture frames, and by simply removing the glass and hanging the frame around a plant growing on the wall you’ve created some living art!
You can also upcycle tin cans and biscuit tins by painting them, adding some pretty draping flowers and plants and hooking them onto your stylish gallery wall.
Another way to decorate a bare wall or fence is with a large mirror, not only will it create a striking talking point, but it will also create the illusion of more space.
Choose stylish seating that folds away
A small outdoor space must fulfil many needs – from entertaining guests to a space for the children to play – your garden needs to be versatile. By choosing seating and tables that fold away, you can use the space for Parisian-style alfresco dining – and stack them away when the kids want room to play.
Bistro sets are the ideal foldable furniture for gardens, and this sage green set from Argos with two chairs and a round table is a great buy for even the smallest of sun traps.
Add a foldable parasol to provide protection from the sun – we’ve found one with integrated LED lighting and options to tilt the umbrella to gain the maximum shade.
Decorate rocks and pebbles
Get the kids involved in creating your ideal bijou garden space by painting pebbles in pretty patterns to create a splash of colour across the floor. Group the finished rocks in the corners of your gardens to provide unique and budget-friendly décor that can be changed up as often as you like with just a few licks of paint.
If you’re feeling really arty, then have a go at recreating these paisley painted rocks. Don’t forget to add a coat of varnish to protect your finished artwork.
Hanging baskets save on floor space
If floor space is at a premium, introduce some hanging baskets from walls and fences, rather than floor-standing planters and pots. They are easy to maintain and can breathe new life into terraces, balconies, and patios.
Choose flowers that cascade – petunias and fuchsias work well – and you’ll also attract a host of bees and butterflies to your garden too.
If flowers aren’t your thing, use your hanging baskets to grow some delicious cherry tomatoes instead. They will tumble in a riot of red from the basket and look just as good as they taste. Once harvested, simply add some pesto and mozzarella for a tasty home-grown alfresco lunch.
Choose a slimline chiminea
Even if we are lucky enough to get the sizzling summer we’re all hoping for, the evenings can still be cool at the height of the season. But that shouldn’t stop you from enjoying time in your garden.
A slim chiminea adds a sleek look to any small space and provides a welcoming and warming glow to keep you toasty.
This silver and black steel chimenea from JD Williams makes a practical, stylish addition to a small garden and includes a log grate and tall stainless steel flue.