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courtyard garden


By Annieb

United Kingdom Gb

Thanks everybody I only found this site yesterday - and I'm so glad that I did. I am now off on a mission! The courtyard is on the ground floor of the building and I have just checked the lease - unfortunately I'm not allowed to paint the walls but I am sure that I can do something with the space. Thanks again for all the suggestions.



Easy! We have an expert on small courtyard gardens on the site - Grenville - you can search for him in the box (top right) take a look through his photos on his page for ideas and then send him a private message if you want any more advice as to growing conditions etc. All of the plants in the garden are in pots. I have visited his and Alan's garden and it is a 'Wow' garden!

21 Oct, 2008


Hi Annie.

Sounds like a fascinating place to live, also a bit of a challenge.

Container gardening is really your only choice You can't really fill it with topsoil, especially if it is based on a roof, which it may be if you have a loft conversion. You don't make that completely clear but if it is on a concrete roof then you have weight to consider and the architect will have pushed the concrete flooring to very near its limit. So if that is the case and you want a lot of containers do get a survey done or you will end up collapsing into somebody's flat.

Really theer are a lot of shade loving plants suitable for containers. You could google 'shade loving plant' but my own favourites amongst others (purely subjective) are hydrangeas, hostas, zantedeschia and choysias. For spring English look I like violets and lily of the valley. You must find your own favourites.


21 Oct, 2008


Agree with Spritzhenry, only other suggestion, are the walls white or can they be painted white as they don't get any sun.

21 Oct, 2008


There are many plants you can use in a shady garden and if you use the walls and fence for climbers etc, it will give you a great backdrop to your seating area. You can use planters, tubs, urns, boxes,anything to hold your plants. As Spritz says, have a look at Grenvilles wonderful place for inspiration.
Shade loving clematis, climbing hydrangeas, pyracanthas will all add seasonal interest too. Tubs of hostas, and topiary box would look wonderful and create great atmosphere,
If the problem is with the weight, as I haven't quite sussed the location of the garden even though you have a loft conversion, using the walls would be the better solution, planters, troughs on brackets would all hold your plants and lightweight tubs on the decking which you could paint to resemble distressed planters would lessen the weight.
My favourite gardening book is Lance Hattat's 'Gardening in a small space' have a look, it is full of ideas and beautiful pics.

21 Oct, 2008


Another useful book is 'Gardening In Shade' by Margery Fish. Although written in 1964, it has been reprinted since then in paperback (by Faber and Faber) and is as relevant now as it was then

21 Oct, 2008

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