15 Budget small garden ideas to inspire your space
Are you looking for a way to upgrade your garden that won't break the bank? Even if you don't have the resources to furnish and plant to your heart's content, you can still create a comfortable and attractive outdoor living space for you and your family.
If you want to make some modifications to your small garden and are looking for garden ideas on a budget, take a look at these fifteen inexpensive and great garden ideas to inspire and motivate you to make a change.
1 - Consider garden edging
The simple process of edging your garden beds is an important step that can help your small garden give the impression that it is much larger than it is.
The additional labour involved in edging your garden may seem like a lot, but the results will be well worth it. There are several options for garden edging materials, and one that works well with every budget.
Concrete pavers are exceptionally durable and will stand the test of time. Kerbs and edging pavers can not only be used to create pathways, but you can use them to edge flower beds at a fraction of the cost.
2 - Build a retaining wall
If you have a small sloping garden, add visual interest and protect your garden from small scale erosion by splitting up your space with tiered retaining walls. Using natural stone or garden walling to build a retaining wall that doubles as raised beds to add character, maximise space, and maintain a low-maintenance garden. Using shrubs and hedges effectively separates the various areas and provides a beautiful feature to your small garden.
You should carefully consider the plants you choose and the locations where they are planted in a multi-tiered garden. The higher the plants, the faster they dry, so keep them in a shadier garden. Choose plants that thrive in damp environments on the lower terraces to keep them blooming for longer.
3 - Transform your small garden using paint
You may not have the time, resources, or money to start a large-scale landscaping project, but the use of paint is an excellent alternative. Surfaces in your small garden will benefit significantly from a new coat of paint.
Adding colour to your outdoor space can be done in various ways. For example, freshly painted wood and metal fences both look amazing. If you don't live in a colour-restricted region, you can be as creative as you like with your fences. Colours like royal blue, mustard yellow, sage green and burgundy look fantastic against a natural setting, but don't overlook the timeless elegance of black, white and grey either.
Whatever the style of your garden furniture, whether it's bistro-style or furniture made from wooden pallets, a fresh coat of paint and some new cushions or coverings will breathe new life into it. It's entirely up to you whether or not you want a unified look by painting everything the same colour or if you wish to experiment with different shades. You could also consider painting your fences or garden shed the same colour as your house interior to create a seamless transition between the two spaces.
If you have left your potted plants and window boxes outside during the winter, they may start to look a little weathered in a short time. Giving them a fresh coat of paint will do wonders to brighten up your garden again during the duller months.
4 - Get creative with pots
Choosing the correct container for your flowers and vegetables is one of the best ways to spruce up your garden on a budget.
Outdoor plant pots are a simple way to update the overall look of your yard. These are sometimes an afterthought in comparison to the greenery that will grow in them, but they have the potential to make a significant impact and instantly brighten a place.
Terracotta, stone, and soft neutral pots may all be used to create a rural garden impression. Alternatively, you could make a laid-back seaside motif with metal pots and navy-blue accents or go exotic with sunny yellows and cherry reds.
Use and recycle unused aluminium tins as another low-cost plant pot trick. Adding a coat of paint to these tins will give them a new lease of life as a home for plants or herbs.
5 - Create a cool industrial aesthetic with oversized planters
For container gardening, the cost of pots and plants can quickly add up, especially if you want bigger sizes to play with. To cut the cost, a budget-friendly planter idea could be to wrap a steel sheet around in a circle and fasten it with roof bolts through the holes in the sheet. To prevent cutting yourself, ensure all your edges are tucked within.
This method is ideal for tiny trees and shrubs, but you can use it with your favourite flowers too. You could also create garden storage by repurposing old wooden containers or make shelves for plants, pots, or gardening boots by stacking upturned trays. The only thing to remember is to ensure everything is fastened to the ground if possible to prevent them from being blown over in the wind.
6 - Consider artificial grass as a low-maintenance option
Small-space gardens and courtyards can be improved by adding artificial grass, which reduces maintenance time and keeps your yard looking great throughout the year.
UV-protected artificial grass does not fade in the sun, making it ideal for outdoor areas. As a result, it will keep its beautiful natural green aspect for many years. It's also a breeze to clean. Using a simple brush, you can remove any built-up dirt or fallen leaves. You can also use a pressure washer to remove harder-to-clean stains and freshen areas where pets may spend time.
7 - Plant and propagate perennials
So you've prepared your garden beds; now you need to make a trip to the garden centre for plants, or do you? Opting for perennials means spending money once and having them bloom year after year.
To create new plants from your existing ones, divide perennials or take cuttings from existing plants to start new growth. If you want a more uniform appearance in your landscape, your best bet is to divide your perennials rather than cutting them.
It's important to plan how many plants you can fit in your small space so you don’t create too many. Keep in mind that if you do this, it will take longer for your landscape to grow as you thin out the available plants to make your landscape bloom.
8 - Build garden furniture out of pallets
When you build your own furniture, you save money and get exactly what you want for your outdoor space. Using an old wooden pallet, you can make a comfortable seating area for a patio or deck. As with any job with reclaimed wood, thoroughly inspect the material to remove any protruding nails or staples and lightly sand the surface to smooth off any rough edges or wood splinters.
Building a bench with wooden pallets for your backyard is pretty simple. For this project, you'll need three pallets that measure nearly the same and have been inspected as mentioned above. To create your foundation, lay two pallets on top of one another and fasten them together using a drill and screws. The third pallet, raised vertically, serves as the rear of your bench, which you secure in place with screws and a drill.
For a more rustic appeal, stain your pallet bench with a natural wood stain or paint it with a colourful wood finish. Then all you have to do is add cushions and blankets to make it even more comfortable.
9 - Bring out your indoor furniture
To save time and money, position indoor chairs on the patio in the garden in a warm location. You may argue that this isn't the ideal solution if you have an apartment on the ground floor of a high rise or live in a low rise, but the money you'll save by not having to buy two seats is well worth it. Rattan chairs or wooden seats on your balcony and cool cane chairs tucked away in your yard, are all excellent ideas.
Repurpose old indoor furniture by giving it a new lease of life with sealant and waterproofing products. Sealant on wood exposed to the elements will prevent water damage, corrosion and mildew. If the furniture has cloth, replace it with something that can withstand the elements without being damaged and add waterproofing.
Finally, apply a water-resistant lacquer on metals, brass, wood, or aluminium to keep it safe from UV rays and rain.
10 - Add a garden path with garden pavers
If you want to create a garden path without breaking the bank, selecting the appropriate materials is essential. It’s much quicker to create a clear stepping stone garden path than a full path that is put into the grass, and you can cover more ground with fewer stones.
To create the perfect stepping stone garden path, remove small amounts of grass and dirt from the ground before you slide garden pavers or slabs into position. Make the stones more level by spreading a little bit of sand underneath. Find full instructions on how to lay a garden path to make the most of your small garden space.
11 - Use reclaimed pavers
You can save money using recycled materials like repurposed pavers, stones, and wood slats. Also, if you do the job yourself, there are no labour expenses to consider. New materials frequently outshine the originals in aesthetic value when used in classic structures. If you live in a city, a reclamation yard may likely be out of your price range, but if you go to a rural region, most are willing to deliver for free.
12 - Upcycle pallets for vertical planters
Vertical planters are gaining popularity because they need less care and are more cost-effective than traditional planters and gardens. In addition to this, they are also great for a smaller area.
Wall-mounted pallet planters, also known as a little wall hanging gardens, have quickly become one of the most popular uses of pallets on the internet in terms of garden design and development ideas. A wall-mounted pallet planter is simple to construct and will need very little upkeep on your part.
13 - Build pallet raised garden beds
Creating sturdy raised wooden garden beds is a great budget garden idea that can be done using recycled wooden pallets. You will need to disassemble the pallet boards and then reassemble them in such a way as to create a large rectangular box that has an adequate amount of depth. Once you are happy with the construction of your new raised bed, you can begin to fill it with beautiful plants and shrubs to bring life to your small garden.
14 - Work outdoor lighting into your garden’s landscape
Lighting for gardens adds another dimension and will keep you outdoors even after dusk. Solar lights are a cheap and easy option, or you could use fairy lights to light up specific trees to make your small garden look more magical.
Alternatively, consider using uplights if you want a more subtle approach to your garden lighting. They also help to create a welcoming atmosphere by casting a soft light over a patio's seats and other decorative elements. You can even stick uplights into your flowerbed and under your potted trees to enjoy your planting at night. If you're planning summer garden parties, consider lighting a few candles in lanterns or other decorative holders to create an air of romance and intrigue.
Choosing LEDs for outdoor lighting is another excellent idea, removing the need for open flames or outdoor plugs. This option is perfect for creating a romantic light in your backyard at night and can be moved about to suit your preferences.
15 - Pave your small garden space
Create the illusion of more space in a tiny garden by incorporating outdoor living room ideas into your own garden. Regardless of the garden size, adding garden paving can help make your space more welcoming for you to spend time in.
If you want your outdoor area to feel like an extension of your house, furnish it with the same level of comfort and style as your inside space. Paving your outside area is an easy way to do this. For added comfort, place a neutral outdoor rug under your feet.
Which slabs need the least amount of upkeep?
Porcelain pavers and planks give the appearance of actual stone or wood, but they need far less maintenance. They're tough, long-lasting and absorb less moisture which means they’re less prone to dirt, algae and frost. In addition to being durable and easy to clean, they won't fade against the elements.
What is the most affordable paving material?
Indian sandstone is an excellent budget-friendly option for patio paving because of its striking appearance and low cost.
Is it necessary to line hanging planters?
In most cases, two layers of plants, equally placed around the basket's perimeter, are adequate. There should be a good liner around each plant's base and no gaps in the liner so that the compost doesn't leak out. Add extra liner and plant the top of the basket once the sides have been tended to.
When thinking about ideas for a tiny garden, one of the essential things to do is to figure out how to maximise the use of every square inch of the available area while staying within your financial means.
Meticulous planning is necessary to get the most out of your small garden ideas, and with a bit of planning, you can create the garden of your dreams and enjoy it for years to come.