Reflected Glory - Holland Park Renovation: modern Garden by Tyler Mandic Ltd

24 sweet and simple ideas for British gardens and patios (Part 1)

Amy Buxton Amy Buxton
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Spring is here, and it looks as though we are going to get a few hot and sunny days, so we bet you've started looking at your garden and patio and wondering how you can give them a little pick me up! 

We might not be professional gardeners, here at homify, but we do know what makes for a fun, pretty and usable garden. So why not check out part one of our handy guide to making the most of your outdoor space? If you have a thirst for some extra inspiration at the end of it, come back tomorrow—for part two!

1. Awnings will give you good weather protection.

Awnings from Appeal:  Garden  by Appeal Home Shading
Appeal Home Shading

Awnings from Appeal

Appeal Home Shading

It's no secret that British weather isn't exactly reliable, so it's a great idea to account for that on your patio, by having some kind of shade. A retractable awning really works, as it's there when you want it and not when you don't.

2. A modern shed can be practical and pretty!

10m² Barbecue Cabin in a Derbyshire garden. : scandinavian Garden by Arctic Cabins
Arctic Cabins

10m² Barbecue Cabin in a Derbyshire garden.

Arctic Cabins

Gone are the days of boring garden sheds with flappy felt roofs! Choose a more fun installation and it will be a handy store and a gorgeous addition to your space.

3. Ponds will encourage nature into your space.

If you love some wildlife, you need to think about building a pond in your garden! Water-loving plants will naturally entice bees, butterflies and countless other animals to stop in for a visit and, a pond always looks great!

4. Add a little heat!

Britain isn't known for its regular heatwaves, so to add a little style and extra usability to your garden, a fire pit is a must! Pop your chairs around it and you'll have a great focal point.

5. Create an alfresco dining spot.

A metal pergola is a great way to create yourself an alfresco dining area, out on a patio. Add a canvas awning and you can eat outdoors, whatever the weather!

6. A brick pizza oven is more exciting than a barbecue.

patio with raised sitting area and suspended brick barbecue : modern Garden by Progressive Design London
Progressive Design London

patio with raised sitting area and suspended brick barbecue

Progressive Design London

Barbecues are great and of course you want one in your garden, but for something a little bit different, you have to try building yourself a pizza oven! You might have a lot of surprise dinner guests though, that's the only downside!

7. Lighting is key!

Whatever you decide to do with your garden or patio, there is one non-negotiable element; lighting! Think about visibility, ambience and coherent styling and you'll be able to find a perfect solution for you. We always like a simple combination of fairy lights and candles, but you might like something a bit fancier!

8. Potted plants are better for small spaces.

If you have a small garden, that's not a big issue! British courtyard gardens have a natural ability to look phenomenal with just a few well chosen potted plants and trees in place, plus, that will be nice and low maintenance. 

9. Don't forget the kids!

For a family-friendly garden, you have to consider building some items just for the kids! A funky treehouse would be an unforgettable treat and something you can add to later, with rope ladders and gangways.

10. Green walls work well in courtyards.

Reflected Glory - Holland Park Renovation: modern Garden by Tyler Mandic Ltd
Tyler Mandic Ltd

Reflected Glory—Holland Park Renovation

Tyler Mandic Ltd

If you have a really small garden, every inch of space counts, so make more of those walls! This garden looks great, just for having some wooden batons and trained climbers in place. 

11. Integrate the path in the lawn.

We take a lot of pride over our lawns in the UK, so how about this for a great idea? Sinking paving slabs into the grass and creating a mosaic effect looks astonishing!

12. Go large with topiaries.

​Back garden at Bedford Gardens House. : modern Garden by Nash Baker Architects Ltd
Nash Baker Architects Ltd

​Back garden at Bedford Gardens House.

Nash Baker Architects Ltd

When you want to create a truly stunning patio, you have to think about minimising the plants and only including those that will be truly impactful. Large-scale topiaries are perfect for really creating a striking and classic outdoor area.

Don't forget to come back tomorrow for part two, but in the meantime, check out this Ideabook: Brilliant DIY ideas for your garden.

Are you going to put any of these ideas into practice?
Whitton Drive:  Terrace house by GK Architects Ltd

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