Small-space Landscaping Packs a Big Punch

by Jane VanOsdol on August 18, 2011

If you have a small yard, you may feel that you don’t have many options when it comes to landscaping. That’s simply not true. You can create a stunning landscape whether you have a postage-stamp sized-yard or an acre—and sometimes it’s easier when you have a small space to work with. Let’s look at some ways you can make your space come alive.

Create a focal point. When you have a small space, choose something to be the focal point of the space. This could be a structure, like a pergola, or it could be a small tree, shrub or large potted arrangement of flowers and plants. It could also be something like a birdbath, a fountain or a beautiful glass gazing ball. Choose your focal point and then have your landscape design complement it. Purchase plants and flowers that will enhance the focal point. For example, if you choose a pergola as your focal point, then you will want to purchase some climbing plants to accent the pergola.

Protect your privacy. If you have a very small space you’re dealing with—say a tiny patio off the back door of your condo or apartment, why not make it into a cozy retreat by planting tall, quick-growing shrubs to completely enclose it, thereby making it into your own private garden. You could lay a short winding path of stones to enhance the secret garden feel. Fill it in with pots overflowing with colorful annuals. Add a cushioned wicker loveseat or a small bistro table and chairs.

Break up the small space. By breaking up a small, open space with an island planting, you’ll create the illusion of a larger space. Have your landscaping services plant an island of colorful annuals and perennials in your yard. It will create small “nooks” in the space that you can use for different purposes. In one nook, you can put a porch swing. On the other side a small table and chairs with an umbrella.

Create a sweet smell. Planting scented flowers and herbs will make a small space come alive with the smells of summer. If you plant creeping thyme between the stones on your path, it will emit a wonderful fragrance when you walk on it. Plant mint in containers (it will spread everywhere if you plant it in a bed), and whenever you brush against it, its wonderful fragrance will fill the air. You can choose from many different varieties like peppermint, spearmint, and chocolate mint just to name a few. Scented geraniums have very fragrant lush, velvety leaves and come in a wide variety of fragrances such as rose, lemon,  and chocolate.

You’ll find that a small yard does not have to mean boring when you fill the space with plantings and structures that will pack a big punch all season long.

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