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Stuck on decisions.

Fruffy91Fruffy91 Posts: 14
edited August 2021 in Garden design
Hey there everyone hope your all well!.

So we have moved into a new build and we are having discussions of doing the back garden. The back garden is as was left by the builders. Am currently spraying the garden every month with weedkiller to keep everything at bay. We are completely stuck on what too do with it. As you can see by my uploaded pictures it's a bare canvas. Could anyone help me with some suggestions as honestly we are not great at stuff like this. We are also unsure about the decline. The garden slopes away from the house slightly. When we do the garden we want it too be as level as possible. Now because of the decline we are unsure if we will be able to level it out with just topsoil alone or is it too steep and will have to build a retaining wall in? You can see the amount of decline by looking at the brickwork of thd garage and can see how much it slopes. Any help would be much appreciated!. If you need any more pictures from different angles then no problem! 


  • AstraeusAstraeus Posts: 334
    That drop appears to be around 400mm. To level that up, you're talking a very, very many tonnes of topsoil and then your garden will be 1/3rd of the way up that fence. For me, levelling it up across the garden would be a no-go.

    Before people can begin to advise you, you need to think about what you want from your garden. Do you have children, in which case you'll want a lawn. Do you have full time jobs, in which case you'll want something fairly low maintenance. Do you want a fruit or veg plot? Is it for hosting, in which case you might want some more hardstanding. Lots to think about before people can give you valuable advice.
  • Fruffy91Fruffy91 Posts: 14
    Right haha might of been a help if I could of provided some info... we want grass yes a nice good lawn. We don't have kids but in the future we do and want somewhere nice for them to play. We also want a nice seating area for summer time big enough for seating and a bbq. We also have a dog so the grass area has to be big enough for him to be able to play. Some nice planters. I was thinking a nice seating area outside the French doors a path down side of garage.. am just really really unsure what to do for the area behind the garage. We want to maximise our space potential. And as much grass as we can get. 
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 11,195
    Welcome @Fruffy91. It looks like there might be enough room for a shed behind the garage? A big patio area would be a good idea. I would have a look at the size of the seating sets/barbecue etc which you would like to have so that you can work out how big a patio you would need, bearing in mind that you need enough space to pull out the chairs and walk round them without falling off the patio!
    You also need to include a washing line area, or choose a retractable washing line between the garage and the house.
    Don't worry about the slope - it's good that it slopes away from the house so you should have no flooding issues. Lawns do not have to be level. Visually you could consider a border or some shrubs along the fence at the bottom of the slope which will create a illusion of it being level.
    Then all the remainder could be grassed over, either seeded which is cheaper but takes longer or turved, quicker but more expensive and better done professionally by a reputable company.
    Planters and flowers come last.
    Have fun.
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • FireFire Posts: 17,116
    Maybe just start simply with lawn and choosing an area you'd want for a patio. You could put in a terrace and level the sections, but as noted, it's a huge job. It depends how attached you are to having a flat lawn.
  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 8,446
    Then it's the aspect NSEW facing,soil type,where in the country are you situated. All had a bearing on what you plant
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 52,214
    I'd have to agree with @Lizzie27 here. My nephew's house [a fairly recent new build] has a very similar layout - and slope. He has 3 children, and it's never been a problem for any of them.  :)
    Get a patio done, and maybe a pergola or similar to give you some shade as well. You can grow climbers on it, and they don't have to be difficult to grow. Turf your main area if you can afford it, or do it by seed. That's much cheaper, and as you don't have children who would be desperate to be out playing on it , that would allow you to spend more money on the important hard landscaping. It's always better to do that first.
    You can add some instant colour and scent with big containers -whether that's annuals or spring bulbs, or anything else. We're approaching the time of year for buying bulbs too, so that would be something you could do very soon. 
    Later on, depending on the amount of gardening you have time, and the inclination, for, you can create beds and borders from that. The garage would lend itself beautifully to some climbers too.  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • ElferElfer Posts: 329
    If you extend the patio the lawn will have a steeper drop. How about levelling down instead of up? You could have planters or a raised border at the edge of the patio/lawn and just do a step down at the side or in the middle. By the time you extend the patio there will be less lawn area to flatten too so less work.
  • Wrigs21Wrigs21 Posts: 171
    I would dive on Instagram and start following some garden designers, there’s no shortage of great photos. You can then pinch some of their ideas and implement them in your own garden
  • AstraeusAstraeus Posts: 334
    I would terrace it.

    I'd extend your patio out to possibly six slabs deep (assuming they're 400mm slabs) and build that up so there will be a drop of around 300mm to the lawn. I'd then build a border there at the lawn height so that the planting was visible from the lawn and also from the patio. By planting laterally, almost like a bit of a screen, you'll make your garden feel bigger and you'll create a separate entertaining area and play area (the lawn). You could emphasis that by building a pergola or fitting an awning.

    I'd then run wide steps off the side of the patio, possibly as wide as the depth of the patio (from the house to the lawn) to give a relaxed, sweeping approach from patio/lawn. Alternatively, you could run steps down the middle of the new planting bed but I'm not a fan of symmetry where the house itself is asymmetric.

    That design would flow quite nicely and give you a journey from the back door, down the steps, around the planting bed to the lawn. That's always better in my view than stepping outside to be greeted with the entire garden.

    Just some thoughts.
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