Pretty as a Picture Patio

pretty as a picture patio

Pick a corner, any corner of your garden and create instant interest and the perfect place to sit and here’s how:


Step one

Take a wall hanging basket and fill it with flowers of your choice, add trailers to the front of the wall hanging basket. They will drop down to meet the main feature plant growing up from the large planter placed below this.

hydrenga and hanging basket


Step Two

Place a large pot of the prolific blooming hydrenga, shown above, or another large pot of flowers or flowering shrub of you choice beneath the wall hanging basket

alium family

Step 3

Add smaller pots, so as not to overshadow the main feature plant, to each side of the main feature pot.  Plant these up with tall growing flowering plants such as this Allium above. These will help cover/conceal the wall/fence backdrop and give you a sense of being immersed in the garden.


hydrenga patio

Step 4

To create another layer add smaller pots to the front of the arrangement.

hydrenga patio and garden


Step 5

Add in your garden furniture, a couple of chairs, a bench, a small side table whatever you have room for.


And there you have it in five easy steps your perfect summer patio planted up. Now you can really get amongst it and enjoy summer on the patio.

Love you my luver

Valentines day here it is again and for those of you who hate all the cheesey things that sometimes come with the day remember it doesn’t have to be that way. Keep¬†the flag for love flying high and keep romance alive. It¬†doesn’t have to be an endurance meal out in the company of couples forced into looking like they are having a good time.¬† Make it your own.

Sit outside and enjoy the night sky together even if it is pea soup.


set the scene

This cute shelter,  complete with love  seat,  was crafted from the thick branches of the elderflower that was cut back last year. A great place to sit even in the rain.



Just add some champagne on ice and a couple of glasses, squeeze into a love seat under the starry sky and cuddle up for love




some chocolate and love hearts to complete the perfect moment




There is nothing more romantic than making your own present. A hand made card or painting are often appreciated even more than the most expensive gift because it is real and comes from the heart



Love you tweetie pie! (pressed flowers and plant seeds on recycled paper)


Paint your own

A flock of love hearts (acrylic on canvas)


True love captured for ever




Love is……………………………..

Watching the sun set together



Sitting Pretty

As most of the hard work in the garden gets done in autumn, early winter and early spring, by late spring and summer it is time to tools down, sit, relax and enjoy the fruits of your labour with a long cool drink with a bit of  light pruning on the side.  A crucial requirement for this is a place to sit and enjoy the views from every angle.  Here are some of the  spots in my space that help me do just that.

Mediterranean Medley
The Scented Patio, Jamine, Lavender, Lemon blossom

Patio chairs and table surrounded by a lemon tree, geraniums, jasmine, basil, bay and lavender.  For a small terrace or patio all of these can be planted in containers around your dining area to bring a little piece of the mediterranean to your space.  The lemon, lavender and  jasmine flowers will fill the air with a delicious scent on a summers evening.

Parisien Parlour
Lemon Tree with Narcissi and Muscari bowl

The same patio in spring Рpop a big bowl of your favourite spring bloomers on the table, muscari and daffodils are in this one, and with the  all year round blooming lemon tree as a backdrop it brings a little bit of  glamour to your patio РParis in the Spring anyone? Just step outside.

Under the shade of the tropical looking and shade loving Fatsia Japonica

Cute and convenient – this ceramic stool can be easily moved around and is great extra outdoor seating that doesn’t take up¬†much space. It adds a dash of bright colour¬†on a dull day.¬† ¬†I popped this one outside my bedroom door. Perfect for those moments when you just want to be away with the birds!

This bench was hand made from the same wood as the decking, it was concieved, built and hand-painted by the amazingly talented Frex, it is a great sunny spot to sit in spring and shady in summer, it also doubles as a display for  spring planted pots and acts as extra outdoor storage.

Simple but effective, this bench was made from a slice of wood cut to order at a timber merchants in the lake district and is supported on circular slices of log, ¬†it is simple and rustic and gives that lovely low level of seating so you can really sit “in” your space, simple to assemble.

“Get Amongst It” the sunken deck, adding a new dimension to your space

One of my favourite places to sit, the sunken deck, ¬†here you can view the garden on another dimension and really ” get amongst it”, for a ¬†summer ¬†garden party I ¬†usually pop in some cushions to make it extra comfy

The sunken deck lined with artificial grass, we use it like a rug and roll it out on those hot days when all you want to do is lie but the grass it too wet also ideal for a small space where you don’t have a lawn …………


Pop in some cushions and get amongst it



This image was taken before I had my side terrace built.   I was gearing up for the planting in the area so  I test planted in big pots.   I wanted a tropical feel in this slightly shaded area of the garden and it inspired me to see that a tiny space with the right planting could be heaven (tropical heaven) on earth.  The chair is surrounded by Elocassia, hardy palms, ferns and bamboo to give that tropical feel.  Another good tropical-like plant but tough as old boots is fatsia japonica which features in  my wrap round tropical terrace.  All can be grown in pots and containers and can really give your terrace or balcony an amazingly tropical evergreen feel.

hardy palms, evergreen ferns, fatsia japonica, bamboo and elocassia all contribute to that tropical feel

Spotted in Ireland on a beautiful walk in co. Kilkenny – this one just had to be shared – a garden bench handcrafted from nature

Handcrafted from Nature Simply Stunning
it’s all in the detail ¬†– the bench composition

A great idea for a small space, plant up a tree of your choice in a large pot,  this one is an olive tree,  make a wooden top to for the pot and  create a table Рa garden, a dining space and a light shade all in one.  Perfect for tiniest of patios or balconies

This pretty dining set spotted recently in columbia road market – a great place for all your gardening needs (perfect size for a small terrace or balcony)

Also check out Oliver Bonas I recently noticed they were doing some really  cute and colourful patio sets this year Рperfect for your tinybloomingplace

Create a little outside space to enjoy, a place to explore your thoughts, inspire you, relax you, a place to sit and contemplate, but don’t just think about it……………

I’m dreaming of a hot summer…….

As I begin to get those summer bulbs in starting with a humongous pot of white gladoli my thoughts turn to dreams of long,  hot loungey summer days in the garden and whilst recently enjoying a sunday morning at the columbia road flower market, I happened upon two gorgeous babes Рperfect to accompany me on these days.  I originally spotted this style of deckchair in an Alan Titchmarsh gardening book years ago, looking aged and comfortable in a pretty garden,  and dreamt of having similar ones ever since but could never find them anywhere for sale in the UK until now.  THE CRUISER CHAIR (folding deck chairs) not only look amazing but are really comfy to lounge in (pop in a few cushions on the VERY lazy days)  and they will also weather beautifully  over time.  Check out WAWA on line or go down to the market for a leisurely browse of their products.

                                                                        Beautifully aged and perfect for lounging

Gladioli white prosperity