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Garden design ideas

Overgrown garden ideasIs your garden blooming marvellous or overgrown and neglected? If it’s the latter, you might be considering garden design ideas for next spring. According to a 2021 study by the AA, having a garden space can bump up your property’s asking price by five percent. Overall, the average home was valued at £209,525, with that price rising to £220,555 if it boasted an outdoor space – an increase of just over £11,000. So, the investment is well worth it if you are considering selling.

However, your garden needs to be in tip-top shape to attract buyers, said 57% of Brits surveyed in a poll by Honda earlier this year. Further, 62% of the 2,000 adults who were questioned said that a well-maintained garden trumped other factors such as the condition of the walls (47 percent) or the roof (50%).

Of course, there are some inexpensive ways to refresh your garden. Suggestions from Idealhome.co.uk include repainting faded fencing, using leftover bricks to lay a garden path and using reclaimed wood to build raised beds.

If you’re looking for a total transformation, you may be in need of some garden landscaping or garden design ideas. Hiring professional and skilled tradespeople to create the garden of your dreams is easy at Find a Craftsman. One simple click here gives you access to hundreds of skilled tradespeople, such as landscape designers, decking, fencing and garden office/shed specialists.

Our handy guide outlines the key points to bear in mind to make sure you’re not led up the garden path when bringing your vision to life.

Garden design ideasDo you need a garden planner?

If you’re confident in your green-fingered skills, there are virtual packages galore to help you design your dream outdoor space. For example, gardena.com offers myGarden, a free online planning tool, which lets you click and drag the plot surface to map your garden to scale. Then you can get to work adding grass, flower beds and paving. You can even add items including buildings, garden furniture and plants, moving, rotating and resizing them until you create your final greenprint to share with your chosen green dream team. This is a particularly good solution for small garden design. You can also check out the iScape app.

How much does gardening landscaping cost?

Landscaping covers any changes you’re making to your outdoor space, including building walls, replacing old patio slabs with a grass lawn, installing lighting or a home office, and planting trees, shrubs and plants.

So, it’s prudent to have a one-to-one with a landscape consultant, especially if you are tackling a large space and intend to put in a new driveway, for example, which may require planning permission. A professional, who will charge roughly £200 a day, can save you from future headaches and make your dreams come true.

The size and shape of your garden will obviously be the biggest factor, followed by the stages involved and materials used. As a general rule of thumb, a professional garden landscaper will charge roughly £10 per sq ft, so an average (1,000 sq ft) garden will come with a price tag of between £5,000 and £10,000.

Hard landscaping is essentially the structure of the garden and is the most expensive part of the process. Remember it’s also the trickiest to change, so it’s crucial to get right. Soft landscaping covers the more living, changeable part of the garden, including plants, shrubs, hedges and groundcover, such as grass or gravel. You have more flexibility with this part of the project.

Amazing garden designsThe table below offers some approximate prices to give you a starting point.

Task/material

Cost

Levelling out (digging up the garden)

£70 p/h

Fencing

Starting at £400

Laying turf

Between £700-£900 for a 50m2 area

Indian Sandstone patio slabs

A 30m2 pack costs approximately £650

Decking, WPC

From £90/m2

Decking, wood

From £100/m2

Beds, including plants

From £22/m2

Tree planting

Approx £70 per tree

Garden path laying

From £40/m2

Lighting

From £430

Hedge installation

From £40/m2

Pond construction

From £180/m2

Top tips for gardening landscaping, whatever your budget

Whether it’s a small garden design (see below) or a much bigger space, these rules apply to both:

Get to know your space

Ideas for my gardenIn the same way the interior of your home comes together, it’s essential that you spend time in your garden to notice different factors like sun and wind patterns. For instance, it’s no good installing a fire pit in the middle of a wind tunnel or planting sun-loving plants in a shady spot. The My Soil app comes in handy here, analysing the soil in your garden and suggesting the plants that will thrive and how to ensure full blooms every time. In addition, Marianne Lipanovich, author of the Big Book of Garden Designs, suggests that spending time in the garden will reveal places you might want to go and sit that you may have not noticed previously.

Go for the best value for money, not the lowest price

If several garden elements are in your plan, the materials you choose are where the biggest savings can be made. For example, a garden path laid with natural stone will be far pricier than gravel or concrete. There are always cheap and expensive material options for any garden element.

Don’t go overboard

It’s tempting to try and cram in too much in your garden, but when it comes to materials, colours and style, keep it simple. Experts suggest limiting your landscaping materials to just two, so that your planting’s colour scheme has the chance to stand out and not be fighting for attention.

Water on tap

Don’t overlook the basics such as how you are going to maintain your beautiful new garden. For large gardens, it may be more practical to install underground irrigation systems before laying down the turf or other groundcover of your choice. However, with prices starting at £1,000, it’s not a budget-friendly option. Manual sprinklers are a good alternative and start from around £20. You can choose from circular spinning sprinklers or ones that water rectangular spaces.

Landscaping ideasSmall garden, big ideas

Even the most compact space can be transformed into a place you want to spend time in. Think about:

  • Using outdoor mirrors to reflect light and create an illusion of more space. Placing potted plants in front of a large, mirrored wall is especially effective.
  • Artificial grass can turn a dingey unused garden into a great play area.
  • Installing a pergola. Trailing plants such as honeysuckle or jasmine will quickly establish and voilà, you will have your own Mediterranean patch of paradise.
  • Ledge love. Windows lined with colourful window boxes add interest and will draw the eye upwards and again create the feel of more space.

Up the kerb appeal of your front garden

If you’re thinking of selling, don’t overlook your front garden. According to research by Roofing Megastore, a scruffy entrance to your home can be a major turn-off to prospective buyers. A damaged wall could see almost £6,000 docked off the asking price while a further £5,500 could be deducted for broken fences. These are simple fixes for the relevant tradespeople you’ll find on Find a Craftsman.

Ready to dig in?

Now you’re clued up on the basics of garden design and costs, why not head over to Find a Craftsman? As the UK’s most established trade association, The Guild of Master Craftsmen has been proudly representing tradespeople and artisans who have skill, integrity and expertise for over 40 years.

There are hundreds of reliable, trustworthy and experienced contractors at your fingertips at Find a Craftsman so wherever you are in the UK, we can help you find the right tradespeople to turn your dream garden into glorious reality.