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Could someone give me some ideas on how to attract sunlight into my back yard. It only catches a small corner shaft of sunlight as the sun goes down in the evening. All daytime sunlight is concentrated on my little front garden. Have just had a new fence erected and decking down on the ground. My roof top has a very shallow pitch and I thought there might be a way of catching the sunlight and bringing it over the roof so to speak i.e., perhaps something like a mirror mounted on the back fence. I have to say that cost would be a criteria so nothing expensive would suit. My cottage sits diagonally on the centra point of the compass. i.e front left is East standing at the front door and back left is west standing at the back door. I want to put pots and a sitting area out there this summer but plants would have a hard time getting no sun and so would I. I would be most grateful for any advice. I attach a photo taken this winter to give some idea of the size of the yard. It is very small. Many thanks Beryl ps I hope the photos have attached - doesn't look as though they have.



No photos attached Berylann. If the sun does not get into your back garden then I'm not sure how you can reflect it into... If your back fences gets the sun then yes a mirror on it would reflect the sun it receives into the garden.

13 Mar, 2011


I don't know how to reflect it in - even if you managed it the light would only be a weak version of the original. But one thing that might help visually, though it wouldn't help the pot plants, is to plant something tall with light or variegated leaves by the fence whose top would emerge into the sunlight. It is amazing what a difference this makes to the feel of a shaded area. Ferns & hostas for a start would do fine, and begonias and busy lizzies will add colour.

13 Mar, 2011


Hello Berylann, my front garden has a similar problem and only gets a few rays of late afternoon sun. I have found it best just to accept this and plant accordingly--variegated evergreen shrubs, beautiful ferns, hardy fuchsias, busy lizzie or nasturtiums for colour in summer. The idea of planting something tall to reach the sunshine sounds great. I realise it's different for you as you would like to sit out there and the lack of sun is frustrating, but I wouldn't use mirrors in a garden because of the risk to birds who often fly into them and break their necks.

13 Mar, 2011


Another thing to help a shady garden seem brighter is to only have white flowers in it. As evening falls, the whites seem to glow and make the light last even longer.

13 Mar, 2011


Hi there berylanne, I am thinking that mirrors could be a bit of a fire hazard, how about painting the fence with light coloured stain, I am sure that would lighten your garden, or if your Walls could be White washed that will help. Lots of bright planting as others have suggested, and a water feature to reflect the sky, even a large bird bath will do that a treat.
Happy growing.

14 Mar, 2011

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