The hanging gardens of Babylon, even though their location is still to be established, have elevated into a world wonder. And not without justification; the ascending tiered gardens, full of trees and vines, were a marvel of engineering. They were the pride and joy of Babylonians.
To reach the ingenuity of Babylonians might be somewhat impossible but that does not mean your garden should not be a distinctive feature of your home. From simple stuff, such as outdoor furniture and lighting, to a more drastic change by building pathways and ponds, there are several ways of transforming your garden into a wonder. Perhaps not the world's best but surely your neighbourhood's!
Lets take a look at 7 ways that can make your garden more interesting than ever…
Gazebos can make a great enhancement to your garden: not only effectively enlarging your home but also so pleasing to the eye! The pleasure of using the garden will increase manifold and the gazebo will become a little temple of relaxation in your back yard.
Available in different shapes and materials, a gazebo might be a simple structure with just four poles and a roof or it can be more elaborate, like the one pictured. Two walls have been erected to provide a cosy environment, stability for outdoor furniture and space for pots.
If you have excellent carpentry skills, you can endeavour to build a wooden gazebo on your own or you can always buy a ready made one. Pop-up gazebos are even available for impromptu parties.
Of course, by transforming your garden into a wonder to behold, time spent in it will increase. There is an uncanny appeal in repurposing spaces into novel rooms, even if that is outdoors. But making such a transition to outdoors living will require some scrutiny. It is a fine line between relaxing on a mid-summer night on the garden hammock and getting up with sore back after a couple of hours.
Outdoor furniture must be able to withstand sun exposure, rain, wind and perhaps some maltreatment. Thus, before buying furniture make sure to know the durability of their material. For example, aluminium, plastic and PVC are generally inexpensive and weatherproof without much maintenance. The wicker rattan mini garden room, pictured, is long-lasting, especially with the addition of a resin finish. And try to stay away from bargains when searching for furniture. If it sounds to good to be true then it usually is.
The next feature that can upgrade your garden is a pond. We love the pond in the picture, which adds a Zen-like atmosphere, with a small wooden bridge crossing the banks. From Japan, with love. There are a few things that you will need to know before setting a pond in the garden. Its depth must be calculated against plants and animals. If you are to put fish in the pond then it must be deep enough to allow them hibernate during winter.
The water needs to be kept oxygenated and adding a waterfall in the pond will do just that. Water that is circulated will keep away noisy mosquitoes from laying eggs and algae will stay away. Finally, you need to take care of your pond. Small ponds can be more difficult to maintain than bigger ones as more water means nature will give a helping hand.
From ponds to fountains, water features can transform your garden into a marvel. However, as with ponds, they will require maintenance to remain a focal point of beauty. You will need to keep the pump in good working order, check the fountain surface for wear and replenish the water regularly, sometimes as often as once per week.
Water features do not limit themselves to fountains though. One can include water pumps in two phalanx opposing each other, creating an arch of water.There are practically limitless possibilities to play with water in your garden!
Perhaps you are more interested in enjoying your garden at night, looking up the stars with a glass of wine. But in darkness, the garden can feel rather cold and detached from the house. That is where outdoor lighting saves the day. Or better yet, the night.
There are numerous choices for outdoor lighting. Contemporary lights that are powered by solar energy, for example, can save money on your electricity bills.
When you have trees in the garden, aim ground lights on the foliage or bathe the trunk with light for a dramatic effect. In flowerbeds, its better to place each lighting feature with some distance between them so the eye can travel from plant to plant, rather than simple overwhelming the flowerbed in light.
While sunny days in Britain can be rare, when the clouds scatter there is no better way to celebrate than having a barbecue. And your garden is the best place to show your vacation mood, between the rays of the sun and the heat of the grill.
There are numerous ways of creating a grill area in your garden. You can set up a square, stone bar-high table near the grill for guests to watch your skills with the grill. Or you can opt for something more contemporary, such as this example. A stainless steel counter that contains two essential barbecue features; a grill and a sink. Prepare for some sizzling food!
Finally, you can build a pathway in your garden to make it just that little bit more interesting. A simple garden path that will guide you through flowerbeds, around your fountain or towards your newly bought furniture. You can use a variety of material and shapes for the pathway.
In the image we see a cobbled pathway in hues of brown encircled by a grey accent, leading from the house towards a modern garden fire pit. Pathways will not only add functionality to your garden but also have a positive affect on its appearance.
A more interesting garden will come with new features. Whether you feel confident enough to take on the task yourself or prefer to hire a contractor is really up to you. But with water, gazebos, lighting, outdoor furniture or just an efficient grill area, your garden will be transformed into something wonderful.