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Planning Your Garden Renovation

By: Rachel Collier - Updated: 23 Oct 2010 | comments*Discuss
Garden Renovation Garden Planning Plant

The decision to renovate your garden won’t be one you’ve taken lightly, and just like any other renovation project, garden redesigns require serious planning and hard work. Our guide will help you to plan and set you up for success.

Dare to Dream

The first step in garden renovation should be to decide what you want to do with your outside space. Visiting public gardens is a great way to gather ideas, as is making a note of any particular features or plants you see on TV, online or out and about. Money is an ever-present consideration, whether you plan to hire in the experts or do the renovating yourself. Make a budget, include a contingency fund, and stick to it! Think about who uses the garden, what it’s used for, its aspect and even its soil type. Enlisting family and friends to help with the dirty work is one way to share the load, so now is a good time to forewarn them of your plans.

Sketchy Details

A critical part of the planning stage is to create a scale diagram of your selected design so that you can work with your garden’s existing framework, including any natural features. This is the perfect chance to work out what’s going to go where, and fit every aspect of your design together, even including colour schemes. Any gaps or crowded areas will become apparent and at this stage it’s easy to re-think. Planning in this way will save you time and money in the long run.

Getting Started

If your renovation is a major project you might need to think about hiring equipment to help you clear the existing area. A skip will be useful for throwing away old paving and other large or heavy items. Keep an eye out for anything you can recycle and save for your new garden. Again, this will save money, not to mention waste. Even smaller projects will benefit from additional man power, so book any human help you need, too.

Ground Work

When you’ve cleared the existing space you’ll have the perfect chance to do some ground work, conditioning soil, repairing fences or other retained features. This will give you a great basis to begin building your new garden, which will only be let down by remnants of its shabby past. Breathe new life into a new lawn at this stage, or lay new turf if necessary.

Green Fingers

The fun part of garden renovation is selecting new shrubs and other features to bring your design to life. In doing so take into account your garden’s aspect and make sure you plant only those specimens that will thrive in those conditions. Working with a colour scheme helps to give a garden unity, and with a little planning you can create a garden filled with beauty and interest throughout the whole year. You may discover a new passion along the way!

Garden renovation is just as critical as home renovation if you’re seeking to add value to your home, or update it before you sell. A great garden can really sell a house, so putting in some time and money now will be a fabulous investment for the future.

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