Eco Fencing project:  Garden by Atkinsons Fencing Ltd

17 ways to have a first-class garden (and not die trying)

Amy Buxton Amy Buxton

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How many of us want lovely things but aren't in a place to be able to commit a lot of time or energy to acquiring them? That's how we feel about gorgeous gardens. We see them, we want them, but deep down we know it will take a huge amount of exertion, time and money to get something similar and our interest wains. 

Well, not any more! We've looked at some of the loveliest gardening projects out there, completed by fabulous landscape architects, and identified key features that will give you the look you crave, minus the effort. 

Don't think of it as cutting corners. It's about working smarter, not harder, and what can be better than that?

1. A row of picture perfect fencing panels

Will instantly give your garden high-end appeal.

2. A neat paving slab path

Traditional Garden:  Garden by Unique Landscapes
Unique Landscapes

Traditional Garden

Unique Landscapes

Will only require a weekend's worth of work and will look fantastic for years.

3. Allotment beds are simple to make

Vegetable garden witihn a country estate:  Garden by Roeder Landscape Design Ltd
Roeder Landscape Design Ltd

Vegetable garden witihn a country estate

Roeder Landscape Design Ltd

Plus, if you choose your veggies right, they will be super simple to maintain.

4. The nose knows

Choosing heavily scented blooms for your garden will distract from messy areas.

5. Curved lawn edges

Traditional Garden - Decked Seating Area:  Garden by Unique Landscapes
Unique Landscapes

Traditional Garden—Decked Seating Area

Unique Landscapes

So simple to create but they really stand out from boring squares.

6. A simple water feature

Serene Gravel Garden:  Garden by Cornus Garden Design
Cornus Garden Design

Serene Gravel Garden

Cornus Garden Design

Will add elegance and style in a mere few hours!

7. Integral flower beds

Contemporary Split level terrace:  Garden by Gardenplan Design
Gardenplan Design

Contemporary Split level terrace

Gardenplan Design

Pulling up a few slabs from your patio to create integral flower beds looks fab and it's so easy, a child could do it (but don't let them!)

8. Oversized decorative elements

Add a sense of fun and eclectic chic to a garden.

9. White raised beds

Small, low maintenance garden:  Garden by Yorkshire Gardens
Yorkshire Gardens

Small, low maintenance garden

Yorkshire Gardens

To give your garden the wow factor, try painting your raised beds white. The minimalist approach looks really trendy!

10. Built-in barbecue

Felsted Place:  Garden by Aralia

Felsted Place


If you have rudimentary bricklaying skills, a built-in barbecue will impress guests no end.

11. Sticking to the bare necessities

Small, low maintenance garden:  Garden by Yorkshire Gardens
Yorkshire Gardens

Small, low maintenance garden

Yorkshire Gardens

Sill keep your space elegant, eye-catching and requires no effort at all.

12. Work with your space and stay proportional

minimal city courtyard:  Garden by Claire Potter Design
Claire Potter Design

minimal city courtyard

Claire Potter Design

These potted trees are perfect for a courtyard and won't need much tending.

13. Choose patterned patio paving slabs

Unique tiles upgrade patio:  Garden by Ecotile Flooring
Ecotile Flooring

Unique tiles upgrade patio

Ecotile Flooring

For an instantly amazing finish. They're no harder to lay than plain ones, as long as you can pattern match!

14. Be a rock star

Detalle de Jardinera:  Garden by Forma Taller
Forma Taller

Detalle de Jardinera

Forma Taller

Low-maintenance gardens can still be stunning if you use rocks to create beautiful, tactile displays.

15. Keep the plants to a minimum

 Garden by studio vtx
studio vtx

estar externo—casa SP

studio vtx

And the furniture maximally stylish! Bright colours will help.

16. Add some fun touches

Pom Pom Garlands in the Garden :  Garden by PomPom Galore
PomPom Galore

Pom Pom Garlands in the Garden

PomPom Galore

Such as pom-pom garlands and fairy lights, which will give your garden year-round appeal.

17. Laying shingle

Will create a perpetually neat and ordered garden and all you have to do is cut open a bag and rake it!

For more garden inspiration, take a look at this Ideabook: 20 cheap n' easy garden DIY projects you can do.

Did these tips tempt you to dig out your gardening gloves?
Whitton Drive:  Terrace house by GK Architects Ltd

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