Did you know this week is National Gardening Week? I have always stressed the importance of gardens (or, more widely, outside space) as part of our homes. They form a number of functions – extra living space, entertaining area, somewhere to grow produce etc. Now more than ever, I think they are vital to our mental health. Having somewhere where I can sit out and enjoy the beautiful weather we’ve been enjoying, to read a book while enjoying a coffee, admire the flowers, listen to the birds has been a real blessing. So what things can you plan to do in your garden this week?

Create An Extension to Your Living Space

Image of garden seating dressed with colourful striped cushions in maroon, navy and green

OK so this may not strictly count as a gardening task but it is about making greater use of your garden. Creating additional living space is a real bonus if your indoor space is limited and will also improve the saleability of your property. We have seen a big increase in the popularity of bi-fold doors as a means of linking our indoor and outdoor spaces, and having easy access to the outdoors and “bringing the outdoors in” gives additional space. If you don’t currently have easy access from a living area consider replacing a window with french doors. To create the feeling of flow between the indoors and outdoors, one option is to use the same flooring material in both areas. A cheaper solution is to use the same colour palette. Paint outdoor garden furniture, a wall or the decking in a colour from your interior and add cushions and throws that echo those inside. There is a wide range of outdoor fabric that is suitable for this.

Create A Herb Garden

Image of a knot garden style herb garden with central bay tree and other herbs planted in a diamond shaped design.

If you are new to gardening and feel daunted at the prospect, or your outdoor space is limited then herbs are a great starting point, they are easy to look after, don’t require a lot of space and of course have the added bonus that you can add them to your cooking. From a few pots on a windowsill, a window box or planter on a balcony to a herb bed this one is for everybody. Some, such as fennel, rosemary, oregano can be grown in a border. Mint spreads so is best grown in a pot. If you are growing for culinary use then common herbs are sage, rosemary, thyme mint and basil. I love this knot garden idea shown in the photo from the DIY Network. For kids, try the old trick of sewing cress on blotting paper or decorate some old terracotta pots, fill with cotton wool balls and dampen, then sew the seeds on top, keep the cotton wool moist and when the cress sprouts it looks like hair!

Create A Well Being Area

Image of a tranquil garden space with pond and seating

There will always be occasions when we want to be on our own or, if we live alone, where we can enjoy the outdoors. If you want to create a private space then garden screens or trellis are a good idea or for a less permanent option even a folding screen taken from indoors can be enough. A row of bamboos, tall grasses or plants such as verbena bonariensis provide a more natural type of screening. Your wellbeing area should include comfortable seating or space to put down some cushions and, for me, a water feature of some sort. There is nothing more soothing than the gentle sound of water. Incorporate large foliage plants either in a border or pot to give the feeling of being immersed in nature and some scented plants such as lavender. Creating an area which is secluded and quite enclosed gives a feeling of being cocooned and safe.

If you have enjoyed this blog, and would like some other ideas for what to do in your garden, then you may also also reading my blog Five Things To Do In The Garden at Easter

If you would like help with an interiors project or are selling your home and want to maximise its potential call me now on 07745 876182 or e mail me on judith@homestyle4u.com. During lockdown I am still able to offer advice remotely.