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Front garden around new shed and gate

Our front garden has nice evergreen shrubs but they are pushing over the two 6x6 fence panels behind which now have to be replaced. Also we need space for a 7x4 bike shed in front of the fence and a secure gate in part of the fence, so want to plan the work together as soon as the scaffolding comes down.

Once we put in the shed and a couple of paving slabs to access the new gate there won't be much grass surface left, so I would be interested in suggestions for whether it would be better to install a different surface such as gravel? I want something permeable as we already have a paved drive and paved turning head adjacent. I'm planning a permeable foundation under the shed such as gravel in plastic, so I was thinking maybe I should just extend the area of gravel to keep things simple. However there is a gentle slope and a tree, so am concerned that it might not stay in position.

I'm also undecided whether to go for concrete fence posts or stick to timber posts to match existing, and am leaning towards timber posts.

Any thoughts/ opinions would be very welcome, thank you.



  • Blue OnionBlue Onion Posts: 2,987
    Some larger rounded river rocks would look nice in the area around the tree, and would be much less likely to shift on the slope than small crushed rock or gravel.  You can't dig the soil level down in that area, so plan to install some sort of low brick surround to hold the rocks in place and define the area.  It will keep it looking tidy as well.  
    Utah, USA.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,353
    Gravel would be fine there. It's only a very small area and the incline isn't that great. My garden has a slope very similar to that and it's all gravelled now with no problem.  Once you have a shed in there as well, there won't be much to fill in too :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Thank you very much for your time replying, the ideas are interesting and I'm happy that they could work. I hadn't thought of trying some larger sized stones. I am not sure what colour or type of gravel would be good, so would be interested in any advice.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,353
    edited January 2022
    I may have misunderstood - is the shed going in the area where the scaffolding is, or is that area solely for re surfacing?
    If you were worried about gravel sliding, it wouldn't need much of a retaining edge to contain it. You could also underplant the tree and also have other shrubs/perennials/bulbs within the gravelled area.  :)
    I use a golden gravel for my paths, and now the entire back garden. It's bright, so it's perfect for shady areas [although my plot is south-ish facing] and also for keeping things cheery in my climate which is often grey and gloomy.  :)

    Facing east-ish, you can see a little bit of the slope, although I have better photos if needed. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 11,985
    I agree with the others, far too small a patch for any grass so gravel would be the way to go.
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • didywdidyw Posts: 3,355
    @Fairygirl - what a delightful area you have there!

    Gardening in East Suffolk on dry sandy soil.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,353
    Very kind of you @didyw.  It was grassed previously, but last spring - on a bit of a whim, I took the grass out [for various reasons] and made the bigger pond etc. 

    I managed to pick the hottest, driest April on record here to do it - that wasn't a great idea!  :D

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • @Fairygirl, that is a beautiful garden, it looks fantastic. Thank you for sharing it. The shed would go back against the fence (longer side), leaving a few feet in front of it where I need to choose a surface. I may need a few paving flags in front to enable the bikes to come out, but feel that gravel surround would be better than bits of leftover grass.
    Following an inspection today, it appears that it's the bottom of the fence post that has rotted and the four Ceanothus shrubs are not responsible. I will need to remove three anyway to make space for the gate (nearest the house) and the shed, but I can leave the one closest to the street.

    Thank you to all the posters for all the suggestions. I will draw and post a sketch of the design in the next couple of days and would welcome any comments on it. 
  • Bee witchedBee witched Posts: 1,264
    Hi @stephenroberthall,

    You might want to consider a green roof for your bike shed.
    It could be lovely ... especially if you go for a pent roof shed with the tall side against you fence. That way you would be able to see all the plants on the roof.

    Bee x

    Gardener and beekeeper in beautiful Scottish Borders  

    A single bee creates just one twelfth of a teaspoon of honey in her lifetime
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,353
    Yes - a wee sketch or two will help @stephenroberthall. It's a good idea to try and do it all at the same time, but if you can't, do the most difficult hard landscaping bits first - your posts and gate etc. Then you can see what the area is like for the shed etc :)

    Ironically, that part of my garden was originally paved and gravelled, as it was an enclosed [fenced]  area within the site. I opened it all up, put in new boundary fences,  re did the whole thing with raised beds, and made a lawn [ as I like a bit of grass ] but after various lots of builders and workmen etc, it had become very compacted. I intended renovating it and re sowing, but decided to do that instead. 

    If your post has rotted [another job I had to do on an old bit of fence last year!] it might be worth digging it all out, and using one of those metal support things instead. You can concrete those in, and bolt the posts in, and then replace the post more easily if it happens again.  :)

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
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