As if we weren’t planning to already, it looks like we’re going to be spending a lot of time in our own company this spring and summer. If, like us, you’re desperate to get outside, but you’ve got an al fresco space you’re not quite sure what to do with, and the cash you need to get the professionals in isn’t within your reach, we’re 100% here for you while you DIY.
Once you’ve tackled the basics, like pulling up weeds and clearing out the rubbish, we’ve got three steps to get you where you want to be. Hopefully, just in time to soak up all the birdsong and dappled sunlight you can handle over the next few months.
1. Know what you want
The sun is out, and we know you’re aching to get going. It’s easy to pick up a shovel and start digging, or (if you’re anything like us) grab your debit card and start piling things into your online basket. Stop and make a plan for what you want from your garden before you begin. With your basic needs and wants in mind, it’ll help you dive into some online research about what will work for you and where to get the most for your money – whether that’s a beachy vibe with hammocks and parasols or a town-house style courtyard with space for your morning coffee. It’s time to reach for a pen and paper and list out your priorities.
2. Know your limits
No matter the footprint of your outside space, your level of commitment is key. If you’re extremely sociable, work long hours or spend a lot of time at your other half’s place, you probably don’t want to create a space that’ll sap lots of time and energy to maintain when things return to normality. Look to the experts for what to invest in, certain plants like shrubs and bushes are relatively low maintenance and fill a lot of space, only needing a good prune annually. And if you look out on your garden from a big window or balcony you might like to portion a decent chunk of your budget on perennials that’ll keep the space in bloom for long stretches at a time.
3. Dress it up
Once you’ve budgeted for the basics, like paving, fencing, lawn and plants (don’t forget the soil, either!) you’ll know what you have left to dress the space and make it yours. If you’re in this for the vitamin D, you’ll want to get yourself a nice lounger or at least some outdoor seating so you can soak up those rays. A multitasker like this Karis Cement Fibre Stool/Table is a savvy option if you can only find the cash for a few pieces, as you can move it around easily and use it for sitting or holding planters to add height and dimension to your garden. We love its clean, modern lines too! Lastly, if it’s entertaining you’re looking forward to, the Small Rollout Storage Trolley with 3 Shelves is a functional, slimmed-down version of its big brother and can still hold plenty of bottles and snacks for you and your fellow diners.