Design Ideas for Overlooked Gardens

If you live in a city or town, you may be one of the many people who has to deal with an overlooked garden. We none of us like to feel as though we have no privacy in our homes, and our gardens should be no exception. Here are some tips to help you metaphorically draw the curtains on those nosy neighbours and turn your garden into a peaceful haven, even in the heart of an urban environment:

Tree in gardenPlant Trees

Even in a small garden, planting one or two trees can help the space feel less overlooked and more private. Choose a native evergreen option for year-round screening, or go for a beautiful deciduous tree in an open position in your garden for summer – a fruiting tree could also provide you with food as well as cover.

ArbourCreate an Arbour or Bower

For an intimate and romantic spot to sit, think about using greenery and vining plants to create a covered arbour or bower that will keep your kisses hidden from prying eyes, or may simply be a good place to relax and read a good book. An arbour or bower can be good for wildlife as well as the human inhabitants. Keep it wild and relatively untamed to enhance the 'secret' effect.

PergolaCreate A Pergola

Of course a covered area will provide the most privacy in an overlooked garden and an arbour is not your only option. You could create a porch seating area on your home or a summer house or other garden building. However, to provide some cover without closing out all the light and air, consider a pergola. Green, leafy plants growing over the structure will provide some cover and shade while still allowing some light to come through from above.

Willow hedgeCurtain Seating Area With A Fedge

For those who are overlooked by lower windows of neighbouring homes, a degree of privacy can be obtained by screening your seating area. There are plenty of ways to create informal and light barriers that will obscure the area without cutting out all the light. A fedge is one idea that could work well as a mid-garden screen in some areas. A fedge is a cross between a fence and a hedge created with, for example, living willow.

Vertical gardenImprove Boring Fences or Walls With Climbers and Vertical Gardens

The problem still remains of what should be done about the boundaries of the garden. Of course, high fences are the most common solution in urban settings and provide the required visual screening from neighbouring gardens. But fences can look rather dull and can make you feel hemmed in. One solution is to place climbing plants on these vertical surfaces. You can also create a beautiful vertical garden structure that will not only improve your boundaries but will also help to insulate the fence and prevent so much sound from passing through.