The Garden Community for Garden Lovers

By Dollyjp

United Kingdom Gb

Hi. Does anyone have any ideas for providing a little mystery for a garden that is wide (50 feet long) but shallow (30 feet long). Am a little puzzled as to how to create little 'secret' areas with such a wide area on view, if you know what I mean.



I wish I had a lovely landscape garden to work with.
I have horrible sub-standard clay soil here, so am glad I have an allotment.

Best way forward is to study photographs of gardens on GOY website, pictures of gardens in magazines etc.
Use other people's ideas ! There are some marvellous ones on GOY. Wrought iron gates make good dividers, and can be found cheaply at recycling centres.

I would have several raised beds for different vegetables.
We may have another drought next spring, when Root Vegetable seeds will not germinate. Get some solid seed trays in, and the little 1.5" peat pots. Sow 3 seeds in ordinary garden soil in each pot, and leave them standing in 1" of water in the solid seed trays. When they are 3" high, plant them still in the pot in your raised beds.

3 Oct, 2011


A picture would help. Large Island beds would be a possibility worth thinking about.

3 Oct, 2011


Creating 'rooms' within the space divided from one another by trellis for climbing plants or by carefully placed small trees with a winding path through the whole space would give some scope for 'mystery' in that you would not see the whole space at once but would have to wander into it to see what is there.

3 Oct, 2011


Any sort of tall planting will create an air of mystery if there is a path leading round it - this could be one large shrub or an island bed as Pimpernel suggests.

3 Oct, 2011


If you click on B at the bottom of page and then find back garden ideas. Click on it. This may help.

3 Oct, 2011


I invite you to take a look at the photos of my garden. It was fence to fence grass two years ago when I bought the property. What follows are some suggestions but the rule above all should be- create what pleases you and your eye; the way YOU want to see your garden world. Application of this rule has been the cause of many a starving artist of other art forms; of that I am sure but in any case one is a success to oneself. I started out with making several small garden islands to begin with, one wet, three dry based on three focal points to keep the eye moving thus to make the garden seem more complex. Hardscaping such as that disappearing garden path and rocks of varying sizes well placed makes the EYE DO THE WALKING which is important in odd shaped or small gardens and creates curiosity. As mentioned in above answers, plantings of various sizes providing differing splashes of floral color will create perspective and the illusion of distance. Changing the topography of your space by creating a garden base of different heights whether be it a raised bed or small mound rock garden is another way of changing width and distance. Make each area a different theme, a wildflower patch, a climber patch, perennial...etc. Garden decor and statuary, an old iron gate, birdhouses staked or affixed to a trellis such as I have place in my garden create interest in different areas. Finally never use a straight line in your design. In my garden, I am currently digging in a reflecting pool which will provide yet another vista. It will most likely take three more years before I put down the brush on this living canvas.

4 Oct, 2011


Thank you so much for the ideas. Was in heaven when I got my garden which is considerably larger than in my last house but at a loss as to how I could create different areas as most designs cover a long and thin garden. We have made some little areas already and have decided against the straight lines, as you say. Love the idea of the old iron gate.... and already have the raised beds which I bought from the garden centre. Lazy I know! Would love to see your reflecting pool Graterford. Sounds interesting! I will endeavour to get some pics but am currently using the library pc and am restricted with the time I can use it as I am supposed to be devoting my time also to finding the perfect job for me... Is lovely to connect with some like minded people. I have to restrict the times that I look at the site too. Am I the only person that gets excited when they look at lovely garden pics and can't sleep if it's too close to bedtime!

5 Oct, 2011


"Am I the only person that gets excited when they look at lovely garden pics and can't sleep if it's too close to bedtime! "

We will be here...Right Lil ?

5 Oct, 2011

How do I say thanks?

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