“With a little guidance and inspiration, even the less green-fingered can achieve great results in a short space of time. With this in mind, we asked professional gardener, Jamie Dunstan, to give his expert advice on how to transform your garden into an extension of your home.”
1. Location, location, location
We all know that an open garden that gets plenty of sunshine is ideal for getting the best results, but even the shadiest of gardens can look beautiful with the right choice of plants. Primroses need less sunshine so is the perfect for a garden that doesn’t benefit from long sunlight hours.
2. Make a plan
When planning your garden, it’s worth considering a colour scheme – if your home has French doors leading to the garden, a continuation of the colour scheme from house to garden creates stylish impact. Think about the different heights and sizes of the plants to complement the overall theme of the garden. A flower bed of all the same height can look very neat and chic, whereas a mixture adds a dynamic feel to the garden – both look great depending on your own personal style.
3. Preparation is key
Before you plant or lay turf in your garden, take the time to make sure the soil is well turned and all weeds are removed. To encourage fertility, try adding compost or manure to the soil.
4. Go potty
Homeowners with limited space – including those living in apartments – can still make the most of their outdoor areas with clever use of pots. A huge range of plants, flowers, vegetables and herbs can be grown in pots, creating a visual and edible feast for the senses! And don’t forget hanging baskets, which can frame the home and create an elegant first impression.
5. Planting the seed
Whether planting from seed or plantlet, it’s important to give each plant plenty of space because the roots will grow outwards in all directions – if you’re unsure how big a plant will grow just ask your local gardener or garden centre for some advice. Try not to plant small flowers in the shadow of a larger shrub or plant, as the larger plant will steal all the sunlight, water and nutrients and the smaller plant won’t survive.
When planting hanging baskets, ensure you soak each plant in water before removing them from the container and planting them as the baskets don’t retain water very well. Water-retention gel added to the soil and a bin liner put in the bottom of the basket can also help to keep the soil moist through the dry summer days.
6. Maintaining your outdoor haven
With a hosepipe ban in place in certain parts of the UK, watering your garden is going to be tricky but there are ways around this. Try collecting rainwater in a harvester to use throughout the summer, but start now so that you have plenty of reserve. As well as sufficient watering, ensure you prune your plants regularly to get rid of any dead buds and leaves to make way for new ones to flourish.
Miller Homes currently has developments throughout Yorkshire including h2010 in Leeds City Centre, Calder View in Dewsbury, Flaxton Court and Miller@Grace in Bradford. Properties range from two bedroom apartments to four bedroom houses and are priced from £75,500.
For more information visit the developments which are open Thursday – Monday 10.30am to 5.30pm or visit http://www.millerhomes.co.uk.
Notes to editors:
• Miller Homes is part of The Miller Group. Since it was established in 1934, Miller Homes has built more than 100,000 homes across the UK, providing a variety of properties to meet the needs of a wide range of purchasers at all stages on the property ladder.
• Miller Homes operates in eight regions across the UK – Scotland East, Scotland West, North West, Yorkshire, North East, East Midlands, West Midlands and Southern.
• Miller Homes offers a variety of incentives, including government-backed schemes and its own schemes, to assist homebuyers in purchasing a new home.
• In 2012 Miller Homes was awarded five star rating in the National Home Builders Federation New Home Customer Satisfaction Survey and the results of independent research highlighted that 97% of its own customers would recommend Miller Homes to their best friend.
Miller Homes Yorkshire has developments across the region in:
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Flourish Marketing & PR
t: 07912 493582