Make your garden great again!

make your garden great again-bp-fi

Right now the whole world is a bit bonkers, we are all in a lockdown trying to prevent the spread of an unseen enemy. The only outside place we are allowed to be in is the garden, but is yours a great place to sit outside in? Or does the garden leave you feeling a bit flat? If so, how do you make your garden great again?

It’s so easy to feel disappointed with our gardens, after all we only usually have images like this to compare them too….


Magazines and books don’t showcase ordinary gardens, just extraordinary gardens; if you can only ever compare your garden to something absolutely amazing – it is impossible for your garden to impress you! But are these gardens really ‘great’ and if not why not?

So, what makes a garden great?

There world is full of beautiful and extraordinary gardens, some have been created by inspiring designers from Capability Brown through to modern designers like Piet Oudolf; and they do produce the most amazing gardens. Some gardens have been created by devoted horticulturalists and expert gardeners like Monty Don and others have been created by organisations such as the RHS for our collective enjoyment. All are packed with a cacophany of different and or exotic plant species; each garden showcases itself in a variety of ways. But what makes it great?

The garden itself isn’t great, it is what the garden gives you that matters.

Now this is the good bit and this is how you can make your garden great too. Whenever you are in any garden however big or small, you only ever occupy a small space. It is this space, at the time you are in it, that has to make you FEEL great! It does not then matter if you only have a tiny garden, because if you feel great in that space – your garden is doing a great job FOR YOU.

So what does the garden have to do to make me feel great?

The key point here is the word feel. Many of us visit gardens and parks, we attend flower shows to see the gardens on display – but why? We visit because we want to feel something, we want to feel we are part of nature and we want to be able to forget the hustle and bustle of life for a moment.


Photo by Rad Pozniakov on Unsplash

Wherever you are in that garden, it must deliver that feeling, it could be by enveloping you in a glorious scent or you could just feel hidden from the outside world when you sit down in a secluded corner. But for the moment you are in that place, the garden has to deliver and that’s what makes it great.

How to make your garden great

There are three factors you need to consider to help make the garden a great place to be:

  • Change
  • Privacy
  • Movement


If nothing in the garden ever changes, you have nothing to look forward to seeing. If you have a plant in the garden it has to do something, such as change leaf colour, produce flowers or produce scent. It it doesn’t do any of these, it is a boring plant – so spice it up, perhaps grow a flowering plant through as well.


Create one part of the garden where you feel totally private. It’s not that the neighbours can’t see your garden, it’s that you can’t see the neighbours from one part of the garden. So when you sit in that space at that moment, you can feel like you are in your own little world.


Once you have found a place in the garden you can feel private, you need something else help distract you from the ‘outside world’. The best way to achieve this is with movement. Choose plants that dance in the breeze and make your garden as wildlife friendly as possible. Watching birds, or butterflies flit about the garden or watching the grass blowing in the breeze allows you to relax and then your mind will do the rest for you.

verbena and butterfly

The point is this – your garden does not have to be or look amazing; it just has to make you feel great when you sit out in it.

butterfly on poppies insect friendly planting text