Small gardens in urban areas would be overlooked easily by other houses or people walking on the road. This makes it seem impossible to keep any privacy in your property. The increasing demand for housing quickly leads to the replacement of traditional walled houses by open-plan spaces, which eventually reduces personal space.
No matter if you want to hide ugly views from the outside or prevent your neighbours from seeing into your property, here are some useful tips on how to get privacy in an overlooked garden.
1. Fence in
Most gardens in urban areas have some forms of fencing in the boundary. While these existing fences might be unsightly, you can revamp them easily with paint or climbers. Also, it is a good idea to build your own fence with pressure-treated timbers, which have been saturated in preservative and allow them to age over time. Also, consider painting the panels to help lighten up the whole space.
These days, there are many options available for fencings, such as solid hardwood fence, hazel panels, composite plastic, and metal styles. Climbers can be a great choice because they would add much-needed greenery and softness to your fence, as well as encourage wildlife. Some other types like jasmine can also remain evergreen and provide fragrance to give structure to your garden in the winter.
2. Grow evergreen trees
Evergreen trees are great options to create a layer of protection between your garden and other properties in the neighbourhood. However, there aren’t so many options available which you can grow in an urban garden to create much-needed screening. These include Ligustrum lucidum, Prunus lusitanica, Magnolia grandiflora, and Quercus ilex.
A great way to block out the view from your neighbours in a small garden is to plant a row of trained trees with denser branches over time. For a larger space, consider positioning the trees away from the boundary to hide the viewpoint of other people from the outside.
3. Build a roof
It might be hard to create a seating spot which isn’t overlooked by your neighbours in the city. But you can construct a small structure in the corner of your garden which has a solid roof to relax and add more privacy. This structure doesn’t only add a bit of height, but it can also allow you to enjoy your summer night in a secluded hideaway without being on the show. Consider adding soft cushions and lighting to make it become a go-to spot. For added fragrance and beauty, you can grow mayleen, roses, or clematis around the area.
4. Mask sounds
In addition to sight, sound also plays an essential role in keeping the privacy in your garden. Thus, you can install a water feature which produces gentle sounds to help reduce any annoying noises from the roads and surrounding properties.
By setting up a water feature, you can also draw the eyes in and keep you from heading outside of the boundary. A mirrored placed on the back wall would also reflect your garden and create a visual effect of a larger space, thus providing the illusion that you are away from the neighbours.
5. Create your seating area
A patio in the garden is probably a great area to enjoy the privacy. By constructing a pergola on the back of your house, you will have a secluded spot for entertaining, sitting, and relaxing without being overlooked by other people from the outside.
For added privacy and better enclosure, you can grow potted plants around the area. The idea is simply to make you feel nestled just like sitting outdoors in a cafe with containers on the pavement to block out the pedestrians and traffic.
If you do not like a heavy pergola, then a planted-style model with umbrella-style trees might be a better idea. These plum species can position anywhere to create a large square on your dining table.
6. Experiment with hedge
Hedges provide privacy, shelter and give dampen sound. Some popular options to create a hedge in your garden include red robin, viburnum tinus, maculate, aureum, or privet. One drawback of this option is that it might look scrappy after a few years when these plants have been well established. This makes it quite hard to maintain and look after. You’ll definitely need to buy good hedge trimmers.
Also, you can experiment with a living wall which combines different herbaceous plants in fixed. This is perfect for bringing more interest to a stark brick wall or covering any unsightly cracks and bumps.
7. Nurture your lush hideaway
To create a lush hideaway in your urban garden, you can combine a variety of hardy and semi-evergreen plants. Among these, bamboos are undoubtedly one of the most ideal options for privacy as they can grow well in all seasons and spread quickly. For taller specimens and containers, grow fargesia nitida or fargesia rufa for a compact bush. To add more height and create a sunnier area, you can choose Phyllostachys aurea. However, keep in mind to water it on a regular basis, especially during the summer to keep it in the best condition.
Let’s take a look at the following clip for more useful tips on designing your garden for getting privacy: