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Looking inspiration for small rear garden in Belfast centre


 
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stephenc
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Joined: 18 Nov 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2007 4:56 pm    Post subject: Looking inspiration for small rear garden in Belfast centre Reply with quote

Hi all, I came accross this forum looking for ideas for landscaping a small back garden in a flat in the centre of Belfast

Its south facing and mostly flagged but I know with the right planning it could be really nice. Ideally I'd like to have a sitting / lying area possibly in a circular stone layout, barbeque area and the small amount of planting room left for all year round colour but most importanly, only with scented plants

Funds are tight presently as it needs a new kitchen, bathroom, etc but I'm keen on getting the garden right even though I cant afford a designer

I need to get proper measurements, but I think its around 30 feet by 15 feet

Any ideas appreciated, Stephen[/img]
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BlackBird
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2007 5:58 pm    Post subject: Re: Looking inspiration for small rear garden in Belfast cen Reply with quote

stephenc wrote:


I need to get proper measurements, but I think its around 30 feet by 15 feet


Hello to you stephenc. Gardens on the smaller side are often the most difficult to lay out. Give me 1/6 of an acre any day to 1 acre. Razz .
The first thing I suggest you do is read over this mega post by inishindie on the steps to lay out a new garden http://www.gardenplansireland.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=960
Take notes from this which relate to your site. Then you should post up a few pics of your possible garden area with a few queries.

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gardenplanner
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 11:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Stephen,

One of the best gardening books that I go to for inspiration is the Sunset Western Landscaping Book. It gives has a lot of inspiration landscaping pictures for small gardens (some of the pictures come from San Francisco, where space is limited). I'm also putting together a website for sharing garden plans, perhaps you'll find some extra ideas there as well. As the previous post said, you aught to post pictures so that people on this forum can give you some sound advice.
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stephenc
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 21, 2007 5:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks BlackBird and gardenplanner for your replies. I've taken some photos and hopefully the're attached at the bottom. The garden is actually a little smaller - its 25 feet x 13 feet but I know so much could be done with it given the right planning

Photos below, but please forgive the mess as I've just gutted the place
http://www.mypicstudio.com/images.php?i=7649_DSC01301.JPG

http://www.mypicstudio.com/images.php?i=7650_DSC01302.JPG

http://www.mypicstudio.com/images.php?i=7651_DSC01303.JPG

http://www.mypicstudio.com/images.php?i=7652_DSC01305.JPG

http://www.mypicstudio.com/images.php?i=7653_DSC01306.JPG

http://www.mypicstudio.com/images.php?i=7654_DSC01307.JPG

http://www.mypicstudio.com/images.php?i=7655_DSC01308.JPG

http://www.mypicstudio.com/images.php?i=7656_DSC01309.JPG
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gardenplanner
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 21, 2007 7:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Given that it is mostly paved over, your best bet it to start your garden in containers. If/when you do decide to pull out some paver out, you can transplant the existing plants into the ground. In the areas along the wall where there is soil, you may want to put some small ornamental trees which could help give you some privacy from the neighbors. Also be careful not to plant things that will spread out. Just a few thoughts...
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stephenc
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 21, 2007 10:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks gardenplanner, I was hoping to try to get it right first time. I'm happy to tear out the paving stones and anything else to try to make a job of it. The problem is, what do I do?
Stephen
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gardenplanner
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 22, 2007 12:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Stephen, a year ago, I was in the same situation, looking for specific gardening ideas (plans if you will) for my particular lot. I wasn't able to find much online (in terms of specific garden plans) and that lead me to create mygardenplans.com a place where people can share what they have done. Eventually, I'll add more features that make it easier for users to design their garden online. Its just getting started, so you probably won't find what your looking right now. As more plans are added, I'll organize them by lot size, popularity, style, etc.

In your case, it seems like the greatest challenge is getting the most out of your limited space. I don't know if you've ever been at Disneyland, but its fascinating how they make space appear larger than it really is. They do it by dividing the park into multiple "outdoor rooms." I think you can apply this same principle in your 30 x 15 foot your back yard. Here's a couple ideas:

*Keep the 10 x 15 area paved on the side nearest the back door. This will be used for outdoor dining.
*Border it with 4 foot tall boxwood hedge and something else taller along the wall to add height (and privacy).
*Connect this area with a rest of you yard using a flagstone pathway that extends to the far corner of your lot. Place some focal point in this corner to draw attention to this space.
*Add whatever you like for the rest of the garden, perhaps an herb garden.
*Choose plant that will do well in shade since your house is south-facing. Pretty soon, you'll be able to use my site to search for plants that do well in shade.
*Think "up". Add a few 10-15 foot trees that add some height. I noticed that you r neighbor has a pine tree. Don't do that because it eats up a lot of space. Choose plants that will fill the area above you, but that don't get in the way.
*Use different flooring materials. This will break up the space.

Hope these comments from a "weekend gardener" come in handy. I'd really appreciate it if you shared before and after pictures once your done at mygardenplans.com. I think it would be really helpful to people, who are looking for plans just like you.


Last edited by gardenplanner on Thu Nov 22, 2007 7:47 am; edited 1 time in total
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James Kilkelly
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 22, 2007 1:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a few other hints which will agree in part with gardenplanner, and also add a few of my views.

Arrow Take attention away from the "in your face" rear gate by creating a flagstone pathway which leads to the gate but also branches off to an area on the right hand side of the garden.

Arrow The flagstone pathway could sit within a lightish coloured gravel/shingle/slate possibly with tan shades. This will lighten up what at the moment looks to be a dull back garden especially with all the red brick.

Arrow The branched off flagstone pathway would lead to your sitting / lying area possibly laid in a circular flagstone layout. Shield this behind a boxwood hedge within a raised planter.

Arrow The BBQ area could be placed on the door-side of the boxwood hedge.

Arrow Consider growing this plant Winter Jasmine against some of your shadier walls.

Arrow Finally retain the lucky horseshoe on the back wall and get rid of the outdoor toilet. Very Happy

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stephenc
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 22, 2007 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks guys, some good suggestions here from you both; I appreciate it. Theres so much to do in the flat and clear out but I'm looking forward to it. I still think I need to uplift everything and maybe get the slabs diagonal meeting some decking with stoned area, etc but I'll send some pictures in when I get onto it (probably a few months)

Thanks again, Stephen
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