This week is National Gardening Week – the country’s biggest celebration of all things gardening, spear-headed by the RHS.
Whether you’re a green-fingered gardening guru channeling your inner Alan Titchmarsh or Charlie Dimmock, or your talents lie elsewhere (we all have that friend who can’t even keep a house plant alive), it’s true that us Brits love a good garden. According to research, a well-maintained garden can add an impressive 20 per cent to your property value, so it’s definitely something worth investing in – both in terms of time and money. Apparently we spend on average 86 minutes a week gardening – 147 days across our lifetime.
When you decide to put your house up for sale, there’s so much to think about outdoor space can often get forgotten. But it’s worth remembering how important it can be to potential buyers and making sure your garden is looking its very best for any viewings. That said – most homeowners want a relatively low maintenance garden, so don’t feel like you have to recreate Kew Gardens! Kerb appeal is key, so don’t neglect any front garden space, even if it’s not used much.
So, whether you’re looking to spruce up your outdoor space ready to put your house on the market, or you’re about to get stuck into the garden at your brand new home, what are some easy wins to get your garden looking gorgeous?
Get weeding – Get rid of any stray plants which aren’t where they should be! It’s amazing what a difference it makes, especially around paths and patios.
Improve your grass – Over time it’s easy for your lawn to become more moss, dandelions, thistles, mushrooms and weeds than grass. Treat it with a good quality feed and weed killer or use specialist tools to tease them out.
Sort out your soil – Getting your hands dirty will give you more of an understanding of the type of soil you have (Clay? Sandy?). Get digging and turning over the soil and add in some compost to get it in tip top condition.
Colour me beautiful – A splash of colour brightens every garden. The easiest plants to grow include fuschias, sunflowers, hardy geraniums, pansies, lavender, clematis and begonias. Ideal for even the most hesitant gardeners!
Go potty – Pots are a great way of introducing some flowers and plants even if you have no borders, and can be a colourful addition to a garden. You can also take them with you if you move!
Invest in good storage – Like the inside of a house, a garden can easily become cluttered, especially if you have children. Find some storage which works for you – from a lockable chest to a full on shed – but pick good quality ones which add to your garden rather than detract from it.
Furnish it – think about how you might use your garden. Would you like a barbecue or pizza oven? Some comfy seating and a table will help you make the most of your outdoor space – and think about where the sun is at certain times of day to pick the prime spot to locate them.
Go edible – The theme of this year’s National Gardening Week is edible gardens. So why not try creating a small patch for veggies or fruit or some of your favourite herbs? Nothing beats food grown by your own hands!
Water water everywhere – Be consistent and water your plants enough, but not too much. Mornings or evenings are a good time before the sun gets too hot (although we are in the UK…). New plants need to be watered more frequently until their root system properly develops.
Keep on top of it – Gardens aren’t something you can tend to once and then forget about – you will need to keep up to it. Find time here and there to deadhead flowers, trim back hedges and trees, water your plants, weed and look out for any insect attacks or disease. Ten minutes every day will be much easier to manage than a full weekend every other month!