I’ve been talking about things you may want to consider in the garden from the comfort of a fire-side chair. One thing I get asked for a great deal is a low-maintenance design. Of course this is a bit of a flexible concept. What’s your idea of a low maintenance look?
Would it be like this example of a paved rectangle with artificial grass?
Or this – which also uses artificial grass but with planted borders which will need a certain amount of care.
Or is it more like this – a design which looks gloriously generous and quite tricky but, in fact, is made up from shrubs which largely take care of themselves, while providing good ground cover which suppresses weeds?
People have different levels of engagement with their outside space and, like anything in life, you get out what you put in, but, if you lead a busy life or/and don’t want to be constantly investing in plants, or you just want to spend your time on other things, there are certain things that are well worth considering which make life easier.
To grass or not is probably the first question to ask yourself. If you currently have a lawn which is a drain on your time would it be sensible to get rid of it and create a gravel garden instead?
Go and visit Beth Chatto’s garden in Essex for inspiration.
Install raised beds – they are much easier to maintain as you can fill them with perfect soil right from the start and control weeds much more easily.
Use more shrubs! I can’t recommend this more highly. They have been out of fashion for quite some time – largely as a reaction to the old Victorian Shrubbery look which adorned every local park. There’s a huge choice these days and they are often evergreen, flowering and scented.
That’s probably quite enough for you to be getting on with – see you next week.