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How to make a garden in a patio area?


By Sergey

I recently moved to a new place with a small patio area. It does not look too attractive and I thought it would be nice to add a few plants in pots (quite large pots already available) to make a small garden there. Could someone recommend something that does not need much care or sun (the future garden is quite shadowy most of the time)? Thanks in advance.



The fence does look a bit dull. Perhaps you could give it a coat of paint and then find some brackets and pot holders so that you can have a selection of smallish pots and hanging baskets at different heights on one side. Trailing ferns and ivy might do well and look good against a lighter background.

2 Apr, 2007


Biggish plants suitable for pots are Fatsia japonica (huge leaves) or Fatshedera (grow against the wall, similar leaves to Fatsia but climbs) both of these are evergreen. Hydrangea petiolaris ( a self-supporting climber with big panicles of creamy- white flowers) or Aucuba (get the variegated one - it is an evergreen shrub with green leaves blotched with gold) or for just summer interest try a hardy fuchsia, such as magellanica alba (dainty dancing white flowers) or 'Riccartonii' deep red flowers all summer into autumn) You could even try a rose if it gets some sunlight - 'Mermaid - a yellow climber or 'New Dawn' pale pink climber. You can add variegated ivy over the sides of pots, then under climbers plant violas in spring and autumn and small fuchsias or begonias in summer. this way you get plenty of colour as well as the size and shape of the mature plants. The trick to containers is to get large ones, use good compost with some loam added, and feed regularly. Large containers - especially in shade will not dry out too quick - so it won't matter if you are away/busy sometimes!

7 Apr, 2007


I found the book "How to win at patios and small gardens" (search for it on Amazon etc.) quite useful. Your space does look particularly small, and one trick the book suggests is to use mirrors both to give the illusion of more space and to direct more light to the plants.

I think a large collection of pots in a variety of sizes would look nice there, with a couple of waist-height pots are focal areas -- unfortunately pots aren't cheap! Another option might be to build a series of shelves to place smaller pots on.

Container gardening is fairly labour intensive -- feeding, watering, repotting are all necessary for most plants. Great if you love the process. Bad if you want a great garden without the effort!

14 Apr, 2007


Thanks a lot to all your suggestions. We planted a few things and now waiting for sprouts. It's a very good idea about painting the fence although I cannot get myself to do it yet. It's true that gardening takes a lot of effort!

3 Jun, 2007


Definitely paint or stain the fence, Don't be afraid to add at least one large plant. But when you have difficult conditions you need to put a little effort into care, just a little and you get big rewards.

Everything I have is in a pot, the vast majority thrive, the odd one fails.

6 Sep, 2011


This was 4 years ago Pimpernel lol

7 Sep, 2011


Oh ! Wonder how it went ?

7 Sep, 2011


Thats the frustrating side to this site

7 Sep, 2011

How do I say thanks?

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