Give flooring, fences and furnishings a new lease of life using vibrant colour that complements your planting, says Dawn Isaac
As gardeners we have a tendency to think of planting as the key way to add colour to our outdoor space. However, this is only the start. Where colour is concerned it’s worth thinking of a garden as an exterior room. From flooring and walls to soft furnishing and even artwork, there are a huge number of ways to add vibrant shades.
As a starting point, work out what you want from your colours. Reds are vibrant and warm, yellows are eye catching, blues add mystery and depth whereas greens are calm and tranquil. And, as with so much in design, less is more, so sticking to a single colour – such as the orange in this garden – gives the space a sense of unity.
Before rushing into a decision, it makes sense to purchase a few sample pots of paint and paint old off cuts of wood. If you place these around the garden you can judge the effects of light, weather and other garden features of planting which can all change how a colour performs.
Finally, remember that colours are changeable so don't be afraid to change the whole look whenever you tire of it.
1. Little planting to add colour
2. Evergreen shrubs and trees dominate
3. No entertaining spaces
4. Small stepping stone path provides minimal access
Create an ‘entertaining wall’
A low wall with black limestone coping creates an extra seating area and breaks up the space. Painting the render in orange masonry paint adds a splash of colour
Match up the scheme with painted pots
Old pots are given a new lease of life with a couple of coats of masonry paint, making them the perfect match to the new wall.
Create a feature wall
The outdoor building has been painted to create a bright orange feature wall outside, with a dark grey door adding contrast.
Fix up removable mesh trellis
A steel mesh grid has been attached to hooks on the wall allowing climbers to be taken down when the wall is repainted
Add coloured curtains
A metal gazebo gives a covered entertaining space with colourful curtains to liven up the area.
Create a colourful seating area
A wooden tree seat has been stained a bright orange to match the key garden features.
Make a contrast with dark flooring
Black limestone flooring provides an effective backdrop to the hot and vibrant colours in the garden.
Banish the boundaries
The fences have been coloured with a black wood stain so they recede from view and become an effective foil for the planting in front.
Invest in weatherproof cushions
To soften the seating on the low wall, outdoor cushions have been covered in exterior fabric that can withstand the vagaries of the British weather.
Plant for high contrast
Bright orange and purple flowers are set alongside acid green and deep purple foliage to create a stimulating colour contrast scheme
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