Your garden might look a little worse for wear following the harsh winter, but that is all about to change. Summer is fast approaching so why not clear the weed from the decking and spruce up the shed so your garden is looking picture perfect for the next few months.
Gardening is growing in popularity with Brits increasingly choosing to ‘make over’ their outdoor spaces. More and more homeowners are snapping up properties with garden features such as hot tubs, trampolines and summer houses.
A recent report from Lloyds TSB shows that one in 10 Brits admits to spending money on their garden as they can’t afford to move home, while a third of homeowners say spending a lot of time outside is their main reason for splashing out.
The report showed that we are a garden-proud nation, with Britons spending just over half an hour outside each day and a third (31%) wishing they could spend even more time outdoors.
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Frances Tophill, presenter of ITV’s Love Your Garden, said: “We don’t often get a chance to peek over the garden fence of the nation, but as homeowners become too time-poor for gardening, features like decking, summer houses and leisure items have moved into prime position in our back gardens. Whilst it is positive that we are valuing our outdoor spaces more, I hope the traditional image of the flower-filled Great British garden is not beginning to wilt.”
Gardening can be hard work and expensive hobby too if you want to make your neighbours green with envy, but there are a few ways to give your garden a new look on a budget. Here are a few top tips to make your summer garden great, without the great expense.
1. Get a bargain
Garden centres can be expensive so treat them like any other shop and see if you can get a better deal somewhere else, maybe you could find the tools you need from an online specialist. Remember, that prices may rise towards spring and summer but come autumn or early winter you may be able to grab a bargain in the sales.
2. Sow your own
The cheapest way to make your garden look great is by putting in the hard graft by growing your own. Seeds are a much cheaper alternative to buying a plant outright so why not fill your flowerbeds with cheap seeds that will grow year after year.
3. Swap with friends
Swapping is a great way to keep costs down, for example, for the those four months of the year that you might use the lawn mower instead of buying one outright just ask to borrow a friend or neighbours or even rent one out.
Doing a seed swap with friends, will also give you access to a wide variety of plants, without you having to pay for a multiple packets of seeds.
If you want to give you fence a new lease of life with a lick of paint, don’t waste your money on buying a new pot of paint. See if you know anyone who will be willing to donate or sell any of their unused half cans which often end up sitting in the shed for years untouched after the initial buy.
4. Embrace DIY
From a path made up of stepping stones to a water feature, those not afraid of getting their hands dirty can create a standout feature in their garden with a little time, effort and elbow grease.
Putting up your own garden shed, which can be snapped up for under £150, will add an extra dimension to your garden, and also serve as a multi-functional storage area.
5. Get free expert advice
Visit gardenadvice.co.uk to get expert advice on any of your gardening dilemmas, to ensure that the money invested into your garden, is money well spent. The Royal Horticultural Society website also has a wealth of plant information and advice, including a plant selector to find the plants best suited to the conditions in your garden.