One would think that a small yard means less work on landscaping and maintenance, but in reality, when you have a small yard, you have to pay much more attention to how you arrange it. It’s precisely because of its size that every detail can become an eyesore if done improperly, so here are some great ideas for turning your yard into a little piece of heaven.
Words: Diana Smith
Choosing the plants
If you opt for big and tall plants for your small yard, it will probably look even smaller, since the plants will ‘eat up’ your already limited space. Instead, choose small, compact plants with pleasantly smelling flowers to give it a vibrant and colourful appearance. For example, the Bonica rose with its lovely pink flowers, hart’s tongue fern, which unfolds early in spring and makes your garden beautiful all through the year, or star jasmine, a climber whose beautiful dark green leaves turn into an eye-catching bronze, and which will thrive if grown against a warm and sunny wall. You should pick perennial plants, and the ones that are easy to maintain. Don’t be shy with colours, since your yard can be a cheerful and pleasant area if you put the right plants in the right place.
Add some cooling features
Since the heat in Australia can be ruthless, what you can do is put certain features in your yard to help you fight it. This is especially true for big cities like Sydney, where every inch of green and every bit of shade are precious. That’s why you should consider adding some trees at the borders of your yard to shelter you from the sun and wind, but also from any curious looks from your neighbours. Depending on your budget, you can even consider a water feature, ranging from vase fountains and ponds, to artistic fountains, waterfalls, or even a smaller spa pool, since water can slightly cool down the temperature in your yard. If you’re unsure about how to decorate your space, you can easily find professional landscaping in Sydney and hire experienced landscape architects, garden designers and horticulturalists to turn your yard into your own, unique oasis.
Build a patio
Just because your yard is a small one, it doesn’t mean that you can’t have a nice patio. When creating one, you need to factor in the size and the style your home was built in, but also the size of your yard. You can opt for stone, wood, brick or concrete, but whatever you choose, make sure you patio has just enough space to put some essential outdoor furniture on it. You can turn your patio into an outdoor living room by adding a club table and a few chairs, or even a sofa set if there’s enough room for it. Plus, if you can squeeze in a hammock, or a few extra ottomans, then you’re really onto something. Another important thing is the roofing, or at least a patio umbrella, which, along with the cushions on your furniture, can add a splash of colour to your patio and the whole yard.
If you want to save some room for things like a patio, swimming pool, or anything else you want in your yard, there are some tricks you can turn to. For example, you can plant vertically, by using pot hangers and various cans, pots, and even mason jars on a wood trellis against a wall, or even stacking up crates to create a perfect vertical garden. Another way is to get different sizes of pots, of the same or various colours, and stack them for a layered herb or a flower garden. Similarly, you can hang baskets or pots on your wall and plant your flowers or your green plants there. And if your yard still seems too small, hang some old mirrors on your fence to get the illusion of a bigger yard.
You can make you small yard a fun and exciting place, or a minimalist corner for everyday relaxation, but the size doesn’t limit you. The only thing you could be limited by lack of creativity and imagination, but you’ll have no problems with it after reading this guide.