Top tips for a new garden

To celebrate National Gardening Week, we’ve partnered with St John’s Garden Centre ( in Barnstaple to share top tips on how to get started with your new garden.

Step 1 – Objective

The first step is to decide your objective – do you want a low maintenance garden, or do you want to change the colour or have a particular theme, such as jungle or Mediterranean?

Consider the use of water too, including ponds or rills, which are used as narrow channels of water inset into the pavement of a garden.

Step 2 – Prioritise

The next step to consider when starting to build a new garden is the soil that is used. Most new gardens often come as a blank canvas, giving you to the opportunity to get creative on the design and layout.

Humus, a dark and organic material that forms when plants decay, plays an important role in soil. Incorporating it when laying your foundations will help retain moisture and also improve drainage.

Step 3 – Orientation

Which direction does your garden face – North, South, East or West? Before you get stuck in with your planting or design, you will need to think about which direction the sun hits when deciding where to locate your pond or patio, for example.

Step 4 – Plants

Now it’s on to the fun part! It’s important to choose the correct plants for your garden – give thought to which plants will tolerate shade and which are sun lovers.

If you’re looking to fill your garden with climbers, evergreen or deciduous plants, make sure you have sufficient access to your plants to allow for pruning and general care.

If you need help or guidance, have a look online for inspiration or ask a member of staff at your local garden centre on what plants would be best for your new garden layout.

Step 5 – Maintenance

After you’ve put in all the hard work of creating your garden, make sure you maintain it to keep it looking great all year round.

Top things to consider include pruning your plants and hedges, if you add in a patio keep it clean as best you can, and make sure your plants are watered regularly particularly in the summer.

Now sit back and enjoy your wonderful new garden!

We hope this has inspired you to get green fingered and start creating your perfect garden.

Take a look at our new homes developments across the Westcountry here: