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Plain boring garden - desperately looking for ideas!

Hi everyone,  I've been reading through some of the great advice being given to people looking for help with their gardens and decided to ask if anyone could help with mine before I waste any more money on buying the wrong plants etc.  I had my garden hard landscaped last year and was left with a very narrow bed down each side,  and whilst I've put in some plants they're not what I'm aiming for. I would like a bit more shape to the lawn,  I tried giving at the slabs but it's not enough. I don't know whether to try curve it more,  or go for a more angular look? I want to plant small trees,  I've put in a barn root amalanchier which hasn't grown at all in the two months but it's still alive,  and a birch but I don't think it's got enough space. I'd like to make the beds bigger and plant things which stay green,  but I have put in some clematis but I think they're in the wrong place...  I'm clueless about gardening and every plant I put in the shaded side died,  but the ones that are there now are in pots. I'd really love it to have tall things which make it feel more enclosed and a nice shape to the lawn and beds,  any advice is very much appreciated! (before pic,  immediately after landscaping pic, and what it's like now) 


  • JennyJJennyJ Posts: 10,120
    I think you're on the right lines with wider borders and curves. The central path is rather dominant (to my eye) so why not make a feature of it? I would go for a bold shape to the lawn rather than fiddly wiggly curves, and soften the look with lots of planting. Something like this, maybe. The yellow line is meant to be a symmetrical oval but I'm not that good at drawing on the computer! Blue = lower planting, pink and orange = taller planting, not all the same thing, choose what you like in terms of shapes, colours etc and things that'll suit your soil type and climate.

    Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Soil type: sandy, well-drained
  • dappledshadedappledshade Posts: 1,011
    Definitely agree that you could lose some grass and make yourself some deeper borders.
    We started with a much wider lawn than we have now, and over the last two years have reduced it, to gain deeper beds. 
    Deeper beds just means your planting can be more interesting, because you’ve the space to add layers of planting, like Jenny has drawn above, rather than just planting a single file of plants.

    What we also did, to help us plan the garden a bit (ours was a blank slate too), was to take a photo every hour, on the hour, in June (sun at its highest) throughout a cloudless day. Helps to see where the shade is.

    Good luck!
  • AconiteAconite Posts: 24
    I agree with the wider borders and how about some sort of focal point at the very end in line with the path? I would put a water feature but then I love the sound of them, not what everyone likes I know 
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