If your garden seems impossible to maintain, tired-looking, or feral you might need to rethink your way of looking at the space. It could very well be time to start imagining your garden as another room in the house and lavishing as much attention upon it as you do the living room, dining room, or kitchen.
By maintaining your garden properly, it can be enjoyed just like any other room and provide an extra area of functional leisure space for you and your family. We vacuum our lounge carpet and dust our shelves regularly, so why is it so hard to imagine keeping the grass clipped and the shrubbery trimmed? A well-kept garden is a brilliant addition to any home: an open air living room, it makes the perfect place to spend summer afternoons with the family, and can be used for everything from picnics to football.
Softening the transition
The transition between the indoor and outdoor space is key to making the garden another room in the home; the first step is to bring a little of the outside into your front room, and a little of the lounge into your garden. An easy way to do this is with French windows, patios, and decking. Push out the living room windows to make terrace doors that open directly onto the patio or terrace, and get yourself some comfortable outdoor furniture perfect for enjoying a cup of coffee on a sunny morning – or relaxing on long, summer evenings.
Finding the right style
Just like any other part of the house, the garden should reflect your own personal style while at the same time being an extension of the decorative trends present in other parts of the house. Are you going for a more contemporary urban look, or a rustic country feel? Most individuals associate gardens with country living, but a city garden can be even more effective – your own personal oasis away from the hustle and bustle of urban life.
Features – or points of interest – help give a garden focus. Just as a dining room is not a blank, empty space but rather is dominated by the dining table and chairs, so can a garden gain a sense of purpose with the addition of a gazebo, or a patio, deck, or terrace equipped for outdoor dining. Invest in a barbecue or gas grill and you can even cook out there.
Water features have grown in popularity in recent years – at least in part because they are such a talking point – and have the added dimension of sound; the sound of flowing water is incredibly soothing, and even a small water feature such as a fountain can bring plant and animal life into your garden, even in the heart of the city.
When considering the garden, don't forget about the windows that will face out onto it. Well-made shutters produced from all natural materials can add to the look of both the facade of the house and your garden. Fitted wooden shutters can transform a home into a romantic, warm setting no matter where it is placed geographically.