Some Small Garden Ideas To Improve Your Layout

It'd be great to have a huge backyard or dedicated garden space. But many people don't have that. Even if your outdoor space is limited to the tiniest of yards or even to a petite balcony, you can still create an amazing garden. Need inspiration? These gardens show you how to get the most out of the least amount of space.

Dresser Drawer Garden

small garden ideas

Photo by mazaletel licensed under CC BY 2.0

Although you can easily find containers and pots for your flowers and other plants at a garden center, sometimes upcycling is the way to go. If you have an old dresser you're not using, the drawers from it can be the ideal shape and size for growing plants.

If you're not particularly handy, you can simply drill or punch a few holes in the bottom of the drawers for drainage and put the dressers on a table or the ground. But, if you have some carpentry skills, you can create you own vertical, dresser drawer garden area to make the best use of space.

Straw Bale Garden

You don't need a lot of soil or a raised bed to start a garden. A bale of straw can be the perfect growing medium for gardeners without a lot of space. Straw can be ideal for growing, since it retains moisture. As the straw in the bale starts to decompose, it gives your plants plenty of food and nourishment, according to Modern Farmer.

The video from Bonnie Plants shows you how to condition a bale of straw so that it's ready for planting. Another thing to think about when using straw for a small garden is the source of the straw. You can find bales at home improvement stores or garden centers. If you're concerned about growing organically, your best bet for getting straw might be from a farmer, who can tell if you if the straw is organic or not.

One last thing: make sure you're using straw, not hay. Hay isn't just for horses. It also contains grass seeds, which can start growing in your garden. Straw is seed free.

Flower Cart Garden

tiny garden ideas

Photo by JamesDeMers licensed under CC0

Turn an old cart or even your kid's no-longer-used red wagon into a pretty flower garden. A small garden planted in a cart is a great way to brighten up a front yard or to add some color to an otherwise disused or drab area.

The easiest option is to purchase several flowers in a variety of colors and leave them in their planters. You can go with mums in the autumn, as pictured, or plant petunias or marigolds in the spring and summer. If you have a lot of container soil, you can try filling the cart or wagon with soil, then planting your flowers directly in the cart.

Plant in a Pallet

pallet garden

Photo by Tutto Giadinaggio licensed under CC BY 2.0

Wooden pallets tend to be ubiquitous. They also tend to make great small gardens. Using a discarded wooden pallet, you can create a multi-color, vibrant garden in just a few square feet of space.

Where can you find a pallet? Just as you can go to some stores and ask for their empty cardboard boxes, you can also go to some stores and ask if they have a wooden pallet you can take. Many stores get pallets by the dozen when they get large shipments in. Some sell the pallets but most will just discard them and will happily let you take one.

Once you get the pallet, you want to fill it with container soil. You might to need to line the back, bottom and sides with landscape fabric to keep the soil from falling out. When the soil is in place, simply make small holes in the dirt where you want to plant your flowers, the put the root ball of each plant in the holes you made.

Garden in a Can

Going vertical can be the perfect way to have a successful small garden. If you have a fence or wall in your yard or garden area, one way to create a vertical garden is to attach tin or steel can planters to the wall. Paint the cans bright colors before attaching to add some visual interest to the space.

Choose cans in a range of sizes to accommodate different types of plants. How you arrange the cans on the wall or fence is up to you. You can position them at different heights, as pictured, or hang them all in a single row.

Garden in Crates

Wooden wine boxes or crates look elegant and also happen to make great garden containers. You can create your own small garden, perfect for growing salad greens, using a few empty wooden crates.

If you're feeling particularly handy, you can make your own little wooden table to hold the boxes, as shown on this blog. Alternatively, you can simply set the crates on a pre-existing table or even on a windowsill.

Raised Cinder Block Garden Bed

Raised beds can be great for small garden areas. If you build your own, you can make it fit the size of your space exactly. One of the simplest ways to make a raised bed is to use cinder blocks. Instead of having to nail pieces of wood together, you simply arrange the blocks in a square or rectangle on level ground.

Another advantage of using cinder blocks to create a raised bed is that you can use the holes in the blocks as containers. The openings in the blocks are the ideal size for planting annual flowers or herbs.

Cinder blocks are also rather inexpensive, usually costing less than $1 each at hardware stores. Making your own raised bed from cinder blocks can be a much more cost-effective option than using wood or buying a pre-made garden bed.

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