Tips on creating and maintaining green spaces
Giving your garden planning the care and attention it deserves is the best way to bring your garden to life. You want flowers to be blooming and the scent of fresh herbs in the air. There should always be something to admire – from whichever of the available spots you choose to sit in. Sometimes things can get a bit wild and that’s fine too.
Clever planning will allow you to divide your garden up into different sections joined together by paths. If you want to support the natural water cycle, you should go for permeable options on the ground like gravel or paving slabs with gaps between to allow the rainwater to soak straight into the ground. Even if you’ve perfected the basic layout, your garden wouldn’t be complete without plants. Flowering shrubs, grasses and bushes add structure and charm.
Smaller green spaces
Balconies and patios can be kept sustainable and natural too. Insect-friendly shrubs and little trees can be planted in pots of all shapes and sizes. You can set up a simple wire trellis for climbing plants to grow up the outside of your house. The leaves bind fine particles in the air and the water evaporation keeps the microclimate in balance. The same applies to green roofs planted with different types of sedum, carnations and thyme. They absorb up to 90% of rainwater and gradually release it into the atmosphere.
ALL THINGS BRIGHT AND BEAUTIFUL
Gardens acting as living bridges between people and nature are home to fruit trees growing next to mixed native hedges and flowers blooming in borders and wildflower meadows. Crocuses, winter aconites and grass keep the wildlife fed from as early as February. Later in the year, echinacea and sage are amongst the flowering shrubs perfect for pollinators. It’s really important that wild bees have access to plenty of vegetation acting as a source of nectar and pollen up until late autumn. Native species are the best of all.
Laziness = biodiversity?
There’s definitely something in that, as wild bees, hedgehogs, lizards and robins struggle to find food and shelter in gardens that are too neat and tidy. What can you do to help? Don’t clear plant beds until spring and leave the autumn leaves where they are or pile them up once you’ve cleared your lawns, pathways and sitting areas. Animals will soon set up camp in areas of your garden that have been left alone. Piles of branches and stones, dry stone walls and water holes are bound to attract wildlife too since they’re excellent spots for building nests, hiding from predators and quenching thirst on a hot day.