A practical guide to creating a green oasis in the city.
Big Ideas for Small Spaces is for anyone with a small outdoor space that they wish to "green up". While the projects and advice are valuable to any gardener, they are especially useful to urbanites surrounded by concrete who nonetheless want to enjoy the soothing environment of a garden.
Thirty step-by-step projects show how to transform balconies, windowsills, rooftops, pocket-sized patios, even walls, into features of lush greenery, grasses and blooms. They reveal how to create space for perennials, herbs, vegetables, bulbs for season-long flowers, and even shrubs or small trees, as well as seating, tables, lighting, and decorative elements.
The first four sections provide expert advice with numerous illustrated examples:
1. Garden Anywhere -- Why small spaces are different (Microclimates, Wind, Shade, Pollution, Access, Water, Weight, Privacy); Why get growing? (Beauty, the Environment, Health, Wildlife, Pollution, Crime, Community)
2. Where Does Your Garden Grow? -- Making the most of your space (Container growing, Raised beds, Walls, Windowsills, Rooftops, Balconies, Patios, Side yards)
3. Think Outside the Box -- Design tricks (Focal points, Breaking up a small space, Boundaries, Color, Creative containers, Lighting, Water, Mirrors, Storage, Seating)
4. The Projects - The projects include "You Will Need" checklists, tip boxes, and step-by-step photographs. They use inexpensive or repurposed materials, standard tools, and are exceptionally easy to do.
5. Get Growing - This section covers the nuts and bolts of gardening, including what tools and materials you need, how to choose and buy plants and how to care for them, and solutions to common problems.
From a hideaway space outside an apartment window to a windy rooftop overlooking the city, Big Ideas for Small Spaces has something for every urbanite desperate for the freshness of greenery and flowers.
Kay Maguire earned the Kew Diploma at Royal Botanic Garden Kew. She is the author of the award-winning book RHS Grow Your Own Crops in Pots, a regular contributor to magazines such as The Garden and Amateur Gardening and BBC Gardeners' World, where she was Horticultural Editor for six years, and video producer for the RHS website. Kay is now a freelance writer, editor and producer.
Tony Woods is the owner of Garden Club London, which specializes in garden design and soft landscaping in an urban setting, often on balconies, roof gardens and terraces. In 2013 he won the RHS's Young Garden Designer of the Year award for his "Escape to the City" garden at the Tatton Park Flower Show.
The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) is the UK's leading gardening organization, dedicated to advancing horticulture and promoting good gardening.