The possibilities that come with large gardens are limitless: you could put in a pond for fish, a pool for yourself, a water feature to sit by, wooden decking for large gatherings, a farm so that you never have to go grocery shopping ever again, and a meandering rock path or flowing brook surrounded by lush foliage for a meditative sanctuary. But for most of us living in the city, our options are limited by the space between the substructures of our homes and the edges of our property lines, so we peeked into some yards to list the following ideas for decorating your small garden spaces.
If you’re living in a high-rise structure, your outdoor garden options are probably limited to the balcony. But don’t let that dishearten you, as these deceptively narrow spaces can be transformed into lush gardens with the addition of some pots, bowls, boxes, and improvised planters adorning the railings, floor, or walls. If your balcony does not receive much sunlight, consider planting some shade-loving varieties.
Perhaps gardening is just not your forté and you would prefer to devote your garden to additional space for hosting gatherings instead – implementing wood decking or some other form of hardscape provides a functional platform while reducing some of the landscaping concerns. With a hardscape deck as the centrepiece of an outdoor space, plants become more of an optional adornment that can be replaced by furniture, lighting, or other forms of decoration.
3) Rock Garden
While hardscaping makes for functional spaces, the act of replacing garden space with architectural finishes does not allow much room for creative expression. For those seeking to unleash their inner artist, we highly recommend the meditative exercise of creating a Zen space in a garden of any size, using your own curated selection of fine or coarse sand, gravel, pebbles, and larger stones. Restrict the shape and size of your rock garden with wood and moss-covered stones – or let it flow freely, then plant herbs or other small plants and maybe even some decorative sculptures among the stones to complete the arrangement.
4) Water Feature
A significant component of a home with favourable “Feng Shui” – the water feature is almost always expected of both residential and commercial properties in Asia. It is generally a positive thing to have a water feature facing a window or doorway into the home, more so with some varieties of Asian carp (鲤鱼; pinyin: Li Yu) living in it and Chinese Evergreen (萬年青; pinyin: Wan Nian Qing) or other plants around it.
Any avid gardener will tell you that the best way to enjoy the result of your yard work is with a lawn chair and a cool drink in hand. Placing seating and table surfaces in and around your garden makes for a pleasant change from indoor seating rooms, that and it serves as an excuse to show off your garden. Select ready-made lounge furniture with frames made of natural materials such as wood and stone, or engineered materials such as carbon-coated steel, wrought iron, and UV-cured plastic to better endure the elements, or even construct your own out of reclaimed materials for a bespoke arrangement.
Figure you have the space for a pool? Read our guide on pool design considerations here.
Article by Kevin Eichenberger