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With spring just around the corner, and more of us having to stay at home for the foreseeable future, our gardens are going to become even more of a sanctuary. A peaceful outdoor space where we can feel at one with nature, breathe deeply and enjoy the fresh air and sunshine.

But perhaps you’ve looked out of your windows and been a little overwhelmed about the state of your flower beds and lawns after a long and wet winter? Now the weather is set to improve, this is the perfect opportunity to be active, get your garden ship shape and ready for the summer.

There are many simple ways to transform your garden or outside space. For starters why not grab a notepad and pen, and jot down some ideas from areas that you are happy with to ones that you would like to improve. Now is also an excellent time to sow seeds so you have plants ready for spring. You could also utilise your garden in all weather. Perhaps create an area for a firepit with surrounding seating, so that even when it turns chilly, you can still enjoy being outdoors. It’s also a good opportunity to have a tidy-up, weeding, composting and pruning your perennials, roses and evergreens.


Meanwhile, it is still possible to buy garden plants and products from the web - from your local garden centre or from online retailers who can deliver all you need right to your doorstep.

We have some fabulous garden inspiration from around that world - that will not only add colour and vibrancy but give you the perfect excuse to get outside and feel the benefits. From reducing anxiety to improving your mood, creating a relaxing outdoor space is hugely rewarding.

Embrace colour

One of the most famous gardens in the world is Keukenhof Gardens in the Netherlands. It is alive with the colours of the rainbow in over seven million tulips that line the riverbank. Planting tulip bulbs couldn’t be simpler. Don’t be afraid to mix different colours, and make use of old planters or discarded pottery, particularly if you don’t have a large garden. You could even plant a meadow of tulips or duplicate the fields of Keukenhof by planting rows of different colours. When you plant your bulbs, the perfect depth to plant one is two and half times the length of it.


Go with the classics

Head to Giverny in France, and you’ll be amazed by the breathtaking gardens of Monet. The impressionist’s grounds inspired much of his work and for visitors it is like stepping into a real-life painting. His inspiring gardens are renowned for waterlilies, but are also resplendent in roses, Iris, peony, poppies, geraniums, wisteria, rhododendrons, daisies and delphiniums. His planting schemes can be recreated even on a smaller scale from rose-covered pergolas to raised paintbox beds. He also loved the trend for natural, wild-looking gardens, where plants are not constrained to borders and can flow freely. Perhaps you could sow your very own wildflower meadow in any bare patches or even in containers?


Discover your zen

Japanese gardens were created in a time of great need - where the ruling elite could find serenity and calm amidst war and turmoil. Combining the basic elements of rock, water and plants, all of these are placed to serve a purpose of creating zen, to feel peaceful and relaxed. Elements that help us appreciate nature. One of the most famous in Japan is Kenroku-en, located in Kanazawa and is one of three Great Gardens of Japan. Here you will see traditional plum and blossom trees and placid ponds. By keeping your design uncluttered, means you can choose simple lines, perhaps only two or three mosses or crawling plants, bamboo for sectioning off areas, evergreen plants and deciduous shrubs to add structure, zig zag pathways and perhaps even an uncomplicated water feature. The trickle of water or a reflection pool can help instil serenity.


The good life

Kew Garden’s Kitchen Garden is bursting with edible plants and fruits and vegetables. And by growing your own produce, it can have a positive impact on the environment and give you amazingly tasty organic food. You could recreate a smaller version of a kitchen garden by making your own vegetable patch. If you don’t have a large enough area, you could always grow in pots or containers. Salads, tomatoes, chillies and herbs are easy to grow - just make sure you choose a sunny patch and water your containers liberally. If you put your pots close to a water source it will make it easier to water them several times particularly during warm weather.

If you would like some more inspiring garden ideas, we have several escorted tours that take in stunning gardens from around the world


Article published on: 25th March, 2020

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Ting

Ting has a serious case of wanderlust. Having travelled to over 40 countries, it’s her mission in life to make her way through her ever-growing list. Her two young sons have also caught the travel bug, and recent trips have seen them making snow angels in Iceland while watching the Northern Lights, as well as walking alongside elephants in South Africa.


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