How to hide ugly sheds

How to hide Ugly Sheds – 5 rules to making your garden shed less ugly!

garden sheds don't need to look ugly - here's how
Sheds don’t have to look like sheds!

Garden sheds, man-caves or her-hideaways are a ubiquitous part of British garden culture.

They can be beautiful, quirky, miniature palaces but more often than not they are a dull large shabby looking eyesores at the bottom of the garden. So how can you hide ugly sheds in the garden (especially now that gardens are getting even smaller.

So here are our 5 rules to help you hide ugly sheds.

Rule 1 – Don’t plonk the shed at the bottom of the garden.

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The first problem with sheds is where they have been put. Most, if not all sheds are located at the end of the garden. The theory being, if they are further away from the house, they must be less noticeable!

The shed is too large and far too noticeable to hide, plus..

  • The path usually leads straight to the shed – which makes you notice the shed more AND
  • It’s just too large a shape to hide in a small garden!

The reason; there is nothing that grabs your attention more than the shed does

If you have a shed in the garden, you need to have a very prominent ‘look at me instead’ part of the garden, that shouts louder and demands your attention.

The shed hasn’t disappeared, it just becomes less noticeable – it’s been superseded by something else which is nicer to look at.

Our mission is to make gardening easier. So we have created lots of beautiful garden planting ideas to help hide ugly sheds

Rule 2 – If a path leads to the shed – it makes the shed more noticeable

All the path does is highlight the shed

Now you may be thinking, that having a path to the shed is important, and indeed it is – but have something else the path arrives at first like a bench for example.

In fact the path can draw your eye away from the shed to a nicer part of the garden, and then head to the shed after. Its all about thinking a little outside the box.

Rule 3 – The shed has to become part of the design.

So what am I talking about, well the garden shed is most likely one of the largest structures in your garden, so you can’t just hide it, grow something over it or paint it a different colour and hope it will magically transform into an attractive feature.

The best way to hide an ugly shed is to design it in.

Think about how you will use the garden and where the shed can be put so you can use both the shed and the garden as you want to.

Here, the best place to sit in the garden at the end of the day is right where the shed is placed. You can’t use the garden because the shed has hijacked the best bit!

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BUT, if the shed was moved halfway down the garden, you would walk past it, and it could be partially hidden by plants.

The shed become part of the design of the garden. Disguising it even further is easier with plants and a mirrored wall.

Having a ‘look a me’ tree at the bottom of the garden also makes you look there, rather than notice the shed.

Rule 4 – Make a ‘look at me instead’ part of the garden.

The key is understanding how humans actually see, because you can use this to your advantage. Humans are hard-wired to notice everything and anything that moves.

Using plants that dance in a breeze such as grasses and other willowy plants mean you will notice the plants NOT static structures. Think tall, soft, upright and not dense plants.

Secondly attract insects, only use plants that are attractive to bees, butterflies moths and other insects. Don’t forget the birds too – if you watch the birds flying in and out, you won’t be staring at the shed!

Rule 5 – Make the Shed more Interesting

Sheds can be quirky, they are allowed to reflect the personality of the owner, so do you want yours to say ‘rather unimaginative person’ or would you prefer it ‘said’ something else about you?


As long as what you attach to the shed has a theme of some sort, your shed will start to look cool.

So pick a colour theme, or as in this case bird-boxes. Incidentally, there must be a collective noun for a collection of these – how about a Flutter of Bird Boxes?

Good garden design is all about making something work for you and your garden. It doesn’t need to be ridiculously expensive nor does need huge amounts of hard landscaping – all you need is imagination. Can we help – free no obligation advice

Can we help? We’re very good at coming up with great ideas for hiding ugly sheds. All we need to get started is a photo! Contact Us

OR for lots more amazing design advice, that you won’t find anywhere else…. try our book. Available on Amazon and other online bookstores

best garden design book - I Want to Like my Garden by Rachel McCartain

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