How To: Make The Most Out Of Your North Facing Garden

South facing gardens are often more sought after, but making the most of your shade and understanding your garden can give you an equally beautiful and functional outdoor space. North facing gardens have the benefit of getting light in the afternoon and evenings, ideal for alfresco dining and enjoying your outdoor space after you have finished work.

At Holt Garden Centre we have a wide range of gardening products and outdoor furniture, all of which can help you create a beautiful garden, no matter which direction it faces. Our expert team is always on hand to help you find the right plants for your garden and give you advice on how to make the most out of your outdoor space.

Make The Most Out Of Your North Facing Garden - Holt Garden Centre

Understand your shade

Firstly, it is important to understand what type of shade your garden experiences so that you can plant accordingly. Usually you will find it is either; filtered shade (light coming through trees or foliage) or deep shade, which is often found beneath trees and is subject to very little sunlight. The latter may not provide a suitable environment for you to plant as very few plants can tolerate the constant absence of sunlight.

Our top tips:

    Reduce the amount of grass and dedicate more space to planting. Smaller north facing gardens often receive less sunlight which can leave you with a sparse or mossy lawn. By extending your beds and creating more space to grow you have the option to plant more shade tolerant plants and create an overall brighter appearance. If you still want a larger grassy area, opt for shade-tolerant grass mixes to improve the appearance.
    Choose shade loving plants. Not all plants like direct sunlight, which is perfect for a north facing garden. There are plenty of varieties which will thrive and still produce a pop of colour such as ferns, ornamental grasses and Hostas. For more plants that love a shady environment, check out our guide for choosing plants for shady gardens. Lighter foliage plants will also help to brighten dark corners.
    Use potted plants for flexibility. Planting in pots gives you the added advantage of being able to make sure that your plants are in the best spot all year round. A collection of pots with varying heights can also add a nice focal point to your garden. You can also find out more information here about how to get creative with your pots and planters.
    Painting particularly dark areas of the garden with light coloured fence paint can help brighten up particularly dark areas and when used with light coloured garden furniture will create a relaxing and ambient space for you to enjoy.
    Embrace greenery. Bushes and trees are a great way to keep a good look to your garden no matter the season and many species are evergreen, meaning you will have a green garden all year round. Green spaces can also be brightened with a seasonal pop of colour from containers filled with bulbs or winter varieties.
    Reflect available light. Use garden mirrors, and water features to bounce available light around the garden and create focal points in darker areas.
    Pay attention to your soil quality, shady gardens can often have soil that is either too wet or dry which can be improved by adding organic matter.
Make The Most Out Of Your North Facing Garden - Holt Garden Centre

A well planned north facing garden will create a beautiful space that you can enjoy. If you need any help improving your garden, choosing the right plants for your area or advice for growing, please do not hesitate to get in touch or visit us in store.

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