Casa e Giardino
Small Gardens

Small Gardens


The ideas presented in this publication are tailor made for gardens that may be short on space but are big on style. We'll help you plant a rock garden, pick the best annuals and perennials and preview the amazing newest flowers available. We'll keep you updated on plenty of other trends, from the resurgence of courtyards to the popularity of purple plants. Small gardens can do it all - offer up a theme, welcome guests, grow veggies or herbs and even nurture tough-to-grow shade plants.

United States
Athlon Media Group
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1 minuti
from the editor

When contemplating the design of a small yard, patio, rooftop, or balcony, it’s easy to feel hemmed in by the limitations that size engenders. Instead of bemoaning your restricted space, embrace it, as the gardeners we feature on these pages did. Most of us are in the garden in the first place because we love to make things grow, to interact with nature (both flora and fauna), and to surround ourselves with a beautiful and relaxing landscape. Those goals are achievable no matter what square footage or budget you’re working with, and they can be even more doable in a small lot, where everything you create has an immediate impact. To help you get all the inspiration you can from our features, we’ve provided more plans, diagrams, plant information, and do-it-yourself projects…

4 minuti
great goods for small spaces

SNIPPETY DOODAD Precision pruning is easier with the Softgrip Micro-Tip Pruning Snip from Fiskars. The stainless-steel blades stay sharp and swing back into a protective blade cover when not in use. The 6-inch tool was awarded the Arthritis Foundation’s Ease of Use Commendation. $12.99. A GEM OF A SHRUB It looks like a boxwood, but it’s actually a type of holly known as an inkberry. Gem Box forms a dainty mound 2 to 3 feet tall and wide, making it suitable to keep in containers (in a mild climate, year-round) or plant in the ground. Use several as a small hedge; the plant is even deer resistant. Gem Box grows in sun to part shade. Buy it at garden centers or online at TOTE YOUR STUFF Cuter than a bucket…

1 minuti
pint-sized produce

Growing your own food in a small garden or a pot on a deck is easier than ever, thanks to new, compact plant varieties. “One of the major trends we’ve seen in the past few years is breeding for small spaces,” says Diane Blazek, executive director of All-America Selections, an independent organization that tests new varieties in trial and display gardens across North America and makes awards for any that exhibit new or improved characteristics. When planning your diminutive food plot, remember that most vegetables grow best in full sun, six or more hours per day. Read the seed package or plant tag carefully to learn how to space, water, and feed your edibles and in what season they grow best. Some veggies, such as lettuce, kale, and peas, prefer cooler…

7 minuti
easy garden projects

tip Use birdseed for the types of birds that visit your yard regularly, then add seeds that attract new species you want to invite in. WHEEL BIRD FEEDER > Old, weathered wheel > Twine and rope > Scissors > Terra-cotta pots > Birdseed > Wild berries > Fruit > Lard or suet 1. Cut twine sections to twice the length you want your pots to hang from the wheel; thread through the drainage hole in the bottom of each pot. Tie a large knot at one end of the hanging rope, and thread the rope through the center of the wheel. Combine your seed choices in a bowl. Melt lard or suet in a saucepan, and add to the seeds—a ratio of one part fat to two parts seed works best. Fill a few of the pots with the mixture, and…

4 minuti
contain her enthusiasm

When Kathie Wickham moved into a brand-new tract home 30 years ago in Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, the now-retired floral designer had grand landscaping plans for a relatively small, 7,500-square-foot lot. But thanks to deft designing, the irregularly shaped yard proved large enough to contain all her ambitions. Kathie’s wish list included a gazebo as a central focal point, a vegetable garden, fruit trees, a patio, a water garden, and lots of flower beds. She and her husband, Dan, got all that by growing veggies in a side yard, which left the backyard free for other garden elements. “We wanted to create a lush, woodland feel with a lot of color, especially in spring,” says Kathie. “Some people prefer mulch in between plants, but we fill in with all kinds of…

2 minuti
get growing with gorgeous containers

1 Bigger is better. Because plants can grow more roots in big pots, place them in the largest containers possible. Supersized pots also need watering less often, since there’s more soil to hold the moisture. 2 Be a water wizard. Water when the top inch of soil is dry to the touch. Avoid leaving pots standing in water, which can rot roots and promote disease. Too much water can be as bad as too little. 3 Go the hole way. Every container needs drainage holes. If you want to use a pot that doesn’t come with holes, drill some on the bottom or sides. If needed, raise the pot so excess water can dribble out. 4 Avoid a food fight. Fertilize right. Repeated waterings wash nutrients from the soil quickly. To cut down on tasks, add a…