How to maximise your garden’s potential

Ned Browne 16 June 2021

Summer is here, and there’s no better time to make the most of your gardenhere’s how

As the pandemic progressed, so did people’s love of outside space.  Property portals and estate agents across the land reported that having a garden had surged in popularity.  In May of this year, Zoopla reported that the number of renters who searched for properties with gardens had doubled compared to pre-pandemic levels.

Sitting on a goldmine?

With supply constant and demand surging, that can only mean one thing: the value of properties with gardens will rise.  It is worth considering further the supply of homes without gardens: one in four new build properties don't have any outside space. There really is a mismatch - what buyers and renters want is in short supply.

In the property world, it used to be said that kitchens and bathrooms sell properties.  Avocado bathroom suites and shiny pine kitchens warded off all but the most visionary buyers. But, gardens are now taking centre stage: it is, literally, their day in the sun.  So, how do you maximise the value of your garden for yourself and, perhaps, prospective buyers?

Outside dining areas

Creating an outside dining area is a must.  We’ve spent far too much time eating at home - but eating outside feels different.  Somehow, it conjures up memories of better times: holidaying, barbequing and socialising with friends. Liven it up with cushions and throws, outdoor tables and a parasol.  Perhaps even solar powered lights or outdoor candles. The more adventurous may consider adding a pizza oven or a Chimenea.  

Zone your garden

garden

If space allows, you should consider creating different zones in your garden, much like we have different rooms indoors.  Aside from a dining area, you could have a vegetable patch, a water feature, a pergola, a kids’ play area or a rose bed.  People need to be able to visualise themselves using the garden - and zoning your garden makes this easy.

Fencing and security

garden fence with lights

Old, shabby or damaged fencing can ruin the feel of a garden.  It can also raise security concerns.  Replacing or repairing fences will add value straight away.  There are a lot of interesting fencing options out there, so do your research.

Garden rooms

outdoor kitchen space

A few years ago, I wrote an article on garden rooms, and my enthusiasm for them hasn’t dimmed since.  They come in all shapes and sizes - from glorified garden sheds to fully functioning work spaces.  Compared to the cost of extending your home, these seem like an inexpensive way to add useful space.

Plants and pots

plant pots

A mixture of evergreen and seasonal plants will give your garden all-year-around appeal.  As will planting flowers that bloom at different times of the year.  A lush garden full of plants can feel like a calming oasis, which is especially welcome if you’re a city dweller.  Colourful plant pots can add pizzazz too.  

Return on investment

Woman gardening

Gardening is great exercise and proven to be beneficial for your mental health. Moreover, sprucing up your garden should be relatively cheap.  And, in this era, it’s money well spent.

Read more: 7 healing medicinal mushrooms

Read more: How to identify British wallflowers

Keep up with the top stories from Reader's Digest by subscribing to our weekly newsletter