small garden
ECO gardener

Is it possible to create a beautiful garden in a small space? Yes! Contrary to popular notions, you don’t need a huge outdoor space to create a garden. Any blank space in and around the home can be turned into a green oasis – even that thin slice of space near your kitchen window. This guide shows beautiful and functional small garden designs that will make every square inch of your space work harder.

5 Tips for Creating a Beautiful Garden in a Small Space

small garden

What are the elements that make a beautiful garden? Lush greenery, attractive accents, and perhaps, some decorative planters and pots – are just some of the essential components of a gorgeous garden. But if your space is relatively small, there is no need to worry. There are ways to incorporate these elements, even when working with a tiny slice of space. Here are some space-saving tips for a beautiful mini garden:

Start with a simple design: When working with only a sliver of space, you can’t afford to waste the tiny square footage with massive planters or a host of garden decors. You want to start with a small collection of plants, space-efficient planters, and just a few decors to spruce up the space. Hanging plants, wall-mounted structures, and portable planters are also perfect for making the most of a small space. Play with different textures, and mix greens with colorful plants to make up for the simple design. A simple, no-frills garden design may not win any awards, but this is the best way to go if you want to build a mini garden.

Mini everything: Don’t waste precious floor space with a patio set when you’re already running out of room for the plants. Use mini versions of everything when you’re building a garden in a small space. We’re not just talking about garden structures, planters, decors, or even plants! A collection of succulents, herbs, and trailing plants is ideal for a small garden because these plants do not grow too big. You can also set these plants in hanging baskets or a small, minimalist plant shelf. Smaller terracotta pots and hanging flower boxes are also ideal for a mini garden because these are space efficient yet can house several plants simultaneously.

Limit the hardscape materials: Since you don’t have the space for it, curate the hardscape materials, so these do not take up more room than the plants. We suggest limiting the hardscape (hard landscape materials) to terracotta planters and some natural stone accents for a simple yet beautiful garden design. Do not cram too many hardscape materials and plants in a small space because the overall effect will be busy, confusing, and cluttered. If you’re working on a balcony garden, always consider the added weight of the hardscape.

Maximize the vertical space: Going vertical is one of the best ways to make the most out of a small space. An assortment of trellises and arches is perfect for creeping and flowering plants. Wall-mounted planters, window boxes, and tuteur also add growing spaces for plants of different kinds.

Setting plants along the edge of the garden: Because usable growing space is tiny in a mini garden, you want to divide the space for planting and entertaining. It’s possible to create a park-like feeling to a space by confining planting areas to the perimeter of the garden. Create a significant amount of visual interest by planting along the edges of the space, close to the house’s foundation. The diverse selection of plants makes the space feel bigger visually.

How can I make a small garden more interesting?

small garden

Combining whimsical accents with colorful plants

This is an excellent idea to turn your mini garden into a focal point in your outdoor space. Combine a selection of blooming plants for a burst of color with playful garden accents like cute plant labels, a water feature, some garden gnomes, etc. The garden accents must be tiny yet unique, so onlookers will enjoy the display as much as you do. We suggest growing long-blooming perennials and a nice selection of herbs to complement the whimsical garden accents.

Creating garden islands

If you are setting your mini garden outdoors, particularly in adjoining spaces, you can create little garden islands to frame the entire scene and create a destination for the eyes. For example, if your outdoor space features a small patio and a BBQ area, you can create a garden island in the blank spaces between these to elevate the experience of walking through the areas. The mini garden islands do not have to be big, but they should make an impression. You can play with different colors to liven up the space or combine small and tall plants to create lush, green spaces.

Continuity between the house and garden

Visually, you can merge the garden and house by turning the home’s architecture into the garden’s focal point. The lush garden serves as a frame for the house, and this technique is effective if you have large windows. Add a cluster of flowering plants; choose plants that produce big flowers like roses, lavender nepeta, or lilac to make the small garden appear big, lush, and abundant. You can install some flower boxes on the windows to give the impression that the flowers are spilling over the house and into the small garden.

Adding some patio essentials

You can make a small garden more functional by adding some patio essentials like a couple of chairs and a table for tea, a small BBQ area for entertaining friends, or perhaps, a lounge chair or bench to enjoy the view. Remember that any furniture you place in a space has visual weight. To keep the arrangement attractive and organized, choose compact pieces, ideally with a simple, minimalist design. Complement the furnishings with low-maintenance flowering shrubs and bulbs.

Improve Curb Appeal

If you don’t have a blank space in your front or back yard for a garden, consider planting flowering plants and eye-catching shrubs in your driveway, walkways, nearby streets, etc. Any blank space can be turned into a garden, even if it’s the tiniest slice of real estate. You have total control over the size of the garden, so it’s just a matter of finding plants that suit the area. Growing plants in driveways and walkways like coneflower, sedum, daylilies, roses, etc., creates a warm, welcoming ambiance. It makes the space look instantly homey.

Small Garden Ideas to Maximize Your Space

A Vegetable Patch: Growing your own food is rewarding, and thankfully, you don’t need advanced gardening skills or a large expanse of space to create a thriving vegetable garden. Any sunny spot in your yard can be turned into a vegetable patch or a herb garden. If the space is big enough for a raised bed, you can squeeze in more growing spaces for your precious crops.

But if you are only working with a couple of square feet, we suggest planting small herbs like thyme, sage, basil, etc., in small pots. You can buy herb kits that come with all the materials you need for growing premium herbs, including growing pots and potting soil.

raised bed gardening

A Succulent and Cacti Garden: Did you know you can create a mini garden using just one big plant pot? A wide yet shallow terracotta or concrete pot is enough to grow several cacti and succulents side by side.

You can go online and search for the proper arrangements. Pop the terracotta pot in a sunny spot in your front or backyard, and voila, you have a mini garden! You can plant a couple of plants with big leaves to frame the mini succulent and cacti garden and perhaps, add a garden decor to add beauty to your mini garden.

A Brick Herb Spiral: Got some salvaged bricks lying around in your yard? You can use these to create an ascending spiral structure and grow various herbs.

Just choose the spot where you’d like to build the herb garden, start stacking the bricks to create an ascending spiral design, fill the middle with potting soil, and plant the herbs. The design is quite efficient, perfect for a garden with low square footage. Bricks make a great gardening material because they don’t require maintenance and last virtually a lifetime.

A cluster of pots: Nothing simpler than grouping different potted plants into one corner to create a garden and accentuate a space. Call it a mini garden, clustering potted plants is all about mixing different textures, colors, and heights. As long as the plants complement each other and the arrangement doesn’t affect light exposure, they will grow together beautifully.

You’ll need a hand pruner to trim the plants regularly. Grouping plants together can trap excess moisture, which can affect air circulation. Regular pruning boosts air circulation while adding more room for the plants to grow.

Open Shelf Garden: Put your beautiful potted plants on full display by setting them on an open shelf. This garden idea is perfect for indoor and outdoor gardening. It’s also suitable for balconies or patio gardens.

You can upcycle an old, unused shelf or build one using salvaged wood. Set the open shelf on a blank space that gets a lot of light and start putting potted plants one by one. Give each plant several inches of growing space in between for best results. To prevent water leaks that could weaken the wooden shelf, use a spray bottle to water your potted plants.

Essential Gardening Tools for Your Tiny Gardens

ecogardener gardening tools

Hand Pruner: A handy tool for pruning small to medium-sized plants. Choose a hand pruner that’s durable yet lightweight, especially if you work for hours in the garden. A bypass-style blade is ideal for making clean, precise cuts.

Work gloves: Protect your hands from injuries caused by gardening. A trusty pair of work gloves will be handy, especially when weeding or pruning plants. It’s also a great tool to keep your hands clean as you work the soil.

Spray bottle: Hydrate your plants without using too much water. A spray bottle is perfect for watering drought-resistant plants like succulents and cacti. It’s also a great way to hydrate many herbs because these plants hate standing water!

Herb kit: An herb kit will always come in handy when starting a small garden. Some herb kits only come with seed packets; others come with all the materials you need to build a garden, including potting mix and planters.

Utility knife: A hori-hori knife is a short utility knife designed specifically for gardening. One side is bladed, and the other side is serrated. A utility knife is handy in the garden. You can use it to cut overgrowths, work the soil, and dig for weed roots, to name a few.
Gardening doesn’t require vast spaces. As long as you have a sunny spot in and around your home, you can turn it into a green oasis. Shop for gardening essentials and tools at our online store and discover the many wonders of gardening.

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