Garden plans for the year ahead

computer generated garden plans with decking, lawns and winding path

How did your garden perform this summer? Now is a good time to make garden plans for the year ahead.

Planning a garden makeover requires careful thought and it’s often a good idea to sit back and take stock of how your current garden is performing.  

  • What do you like about your outdoor space? 
  • How would you like your garden to look this time next year? 
  • Which garden activities do you want to do more of? 
  • Are there any garden maintenance tasks that you hate?

A landscaping project should address as many of your garden likes and dislikes as possible. Discussing your garden plans with your landscaper BEFORE work starts is absolutely essential to ensure that your new space meets all of your needs.

stone retaining wall with beautiful patio

This beautiful garden is the result of careful planning and skilled craftsmanship from experienced landscapers – but the effort was definitely worth it!

Garden plans for outdoor entertaining

I’m hoping with all my heart that there are no more restrictions on meeting friends and family. Which, of course, means the return of family get togethers, birthday celebrations, barbecues, parties and those long, balmy evenings spent with friends enjoying good food and a drink or two.

How would you change your garden to make outdoor entertaining easier for you and more enjoyable for your guests?

A larger patio? Better lawns? Lighting? Outdoor kitchen? What about an outdoor cinema?

Picture your ideal garden and try to create a list of features that should be included in your garden plans for the future.

Garden plans for growing your own food

I’m writing this in September 2021 and there are rumblings in the news about possible problems with the food supply chain.  I know that it won’t be possible to grow bananas in my garden – at least not during my lifetime – but there is a lot of food that I can grow next year.  Salads, tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, apples…I could even keep chickens for a ready supply of fresh eggs.

Thinking of growing your own food next year? Autumn is the time to start planning.  Where will your veggie patch sit in your garden? How large will it be? Is there an outdoor tap within easy reach? Do you want to include fruit trees in your garden plans?

Planning a lower maintenance garden

robot mower in a low maintenance garden

With busy modern lifestyles, gardening can’t always take priority and so having a low maintenance garden that looks good all year round is a real help.

If your garden plans include reducing the time you spend on outdoor chores, here are some ideas.

Use technology such as robot lawn mowers and automated irrigation to free up your time.  That means that you will still be able to enjoy the ambience created by natural plants, but you won’t need to work too hard for the privilege.

Swap dirty and cracked pavers for modern porcelain paving. The production process is surprisingly eco friendly and you’ll find that it repels stains as well as tiresome invaders such as moss and algae.

Get your garden drainage just right. Better drainage = less mud = less housework and a more attractive garden.

Choose evergreen trees and hedges. There’s lots of choice and these beauties will support wildlife without dropping leaves all over your garden.

Opt for raised beds – they’re easier to maintain. When there’s no bending and kneeling, its not difficult or unpleasant to pluck out the occasional weed.

Managing the budget for your garden plans

It’s great to have garden plans – but also very easy to let the cost of landscaping works run away with you.  

My advice is to start by hiring a garden designer. It might sound like an added expense, but trust me, they will save you money in the long run.  Any decent landscaper will need a garden design to quote from and to work with. Plus, most garden designers have a good idea of what landscaping costs and can help you to include all of the features you need within your overall build budget.

With a design agreed, do your research and find a reputable landscaper who will give you a sensible price for the work.  Avoid anyone who takes a quick look at your plot and then plucks a figure out of thin air.  A bone-fide landscaping quote takes days or even weeks to prepare, depending on the complexity of the project and the landscaper’s workload.

Can your garden plans be built in stages? That’s an excellent way to manage your budget. If you want to divide your garden makeover into several stages, let your garden designer know ASAP.  Quite often, landscaping elements are closely interlinked and so the project will need careful planning and management.

Hiring a landscaper

If your garden plans require the services of a landscaper – it’s best to make contact as soon as possible. There is a shortage of skilled landscapers in the UK at the moment, which means you will likely find yourself on a waiting list.   

Need your garden plans brought to life by a defined date?  Start contacting landscapers now.

Manor Landscapes do have a waiting list at the moment but we would be pleased to help you bring your garden plans to life as soon as we can.

Contact Geoff to discuss your ideas and to organise a quotation.  

Check out our hints on planning outdoor entertaining spaces. 

What does landscaping cost?  

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