I was recently tasked with a bit of a challenge that at first, I was very close to passing up on. I mean, I’m a girl, and a very girly one at that, and as much as I am super house-proud and always ‘doing up’ my house, I spend little time on the garden. Just how many warm days a year do we get here in the North West where we actually get to enjoy the sunshine?
I can usually count on one hand the amount of days I spend out in the back garden, picnic blanket in tow, enjoy my own area of greenery. So it’s fair to say that I’ve let my garden be less of a priority when it comes to grooming and preening.
If I spent as much time on my garden as I did my own beauty routines or styling up my own home office, then wow, it would be something of a work of art.
So anyway, back to the task: I was asked to take on a small project of ‘pimping out my garden’ by using a few tricks, tools and hacks.
A lick of paint, some potted plants, and to somehow give my shed an entire makeover. So for this bit I won’t lie – a lot of the manual building and re-creating was carried out by my boyfriend, but I like to say I project managed, picked the plants, tidied the place up, and all in all gave the garden my lovely feminine touch.
In an ideal world, I wouldn’t go down this route. I’d get the professionals over, like the companies who specialise in landscaping, who can take the ‘grubby’ tasks away from me. But with small budgets, lets see how we got on…
As you can see from the first few photos, the garden was slightly run-down and in need of a huge helping of TLC. The shed was beyond repair, and needed a nice new one purchasing. However, we set out to do this on a budget, and got the majority of DIY tools and items from bargain discounted stores, like B&M Bargains and Home Base.
So, with a strict budget of £100 (we obviously purchased the shed separately away from this budget), we decided to take on our own little challenge to get the garden shaped up for Summer.
Determined to make our outdoor space a place worth spending time in, we set out to spruce up the garden with a few budget hacks. Here’s how…
1. Give the lawn a good old trim and cut.
Costs the price of electricity (unless you actually need to buy a lawn mower) but it works wonders!
2. Plants and Pots
We purchased two mini tree plants which need little maintenance, and potted them in plastic posts towards the approach of the garden. We also purchased a huge bag of affordable gravel type stones to fill in the pots, which can remain there for a long time. It looks neat, fresh, and pretty!
3. Flower beds
These were placed in the top corner, along with small plants which once the sun kicked in for the Summer, they have literally shot up, creating a type of ‘screen’ towards the back fence. It makes the garden much more private, and to me, looks pretty smart!
4. Gravel Pit…
The remaining gravel that we didn’t use in the potted plants was poured over one messy corner of the garden, right at the back. The grey/white colour brightens up the garden instantly, and to me, gives a clean, professional finish.
5. Wooden Features
Adding a small affordable feature – like this rounded table – makes such a difference as it can either be a table to sit around, or a place to rest plant pots. We actually did this ourselves, putting together a little barrel trunk with two rounded pieces of wood to make this ensemble.
The next step is to paint it (currently experiencing a lot of rain at the moment in the North West!)
Again, seeds were bought, along side cheap little plants, that once in contact with the sun, have absolutely bloomed into the leafy bushes they are today.
7. Paint paint paint!
It’s surprising what a lick of paint can do. We actually purchased the cheap-as-chips decking paint for £8 in Home Bargains, which did the job for any other bits of wood, railings and fences. By the way, that’s just me calling it cheap as chips, that’s not actually the brand of the paint!
And voila! I couldn’t be more pleased and happy with this beautiful, blooming garden. It didn’t happen over night, and we did slightly go over the budget (but that was our own choices – we made the more visible updates and painting improvements under this budget) but look what we now have to sit out in!
Dinner al fresco, anyone?