Front Garden Make-Over

The front garden make-over is not complete. The planting is mostly done, but there are several other green and structural issues we have to address. You’ve seen the makeover of the inside of the house and the extreme measures we took to get the house looking exactly the way we wanted. As with everything ‘live’ the garden will evolve over time, but here are some of the things we’ve addressed so far.
The back garden will take a big longer because apart from planting, clearing up and designing, we had to find a suitable place for storage in a size which was 5 times smaller than the huge garden of our old house. Pictures and updates coming shortly.


Front garden make-over


A few hyacinths badly in need of trimming, and a broken flower box were the only attractive things in the front garden. There were a couple of fir trees planted at the border between our house and next door’s. An old hanging basket, lined with an old shopping (plastic) bag hung from the rusty bracket which was put up outside the house some time ago.




Here’s the front shot of the garden before planting began (and before the old windows were changed). The two white plant containers you see were brought from our old garden. They were placed there until we could find a place for them.




After planting. The front garden now has growing shrubs outside the new front window. The window box had been rebuilt and the old hanging basket removed. The tall fir you see on the left was moved from the back garden. I simply dug it up and replanted it. It wasn’t suitable for the back, as the space we have back there is quite minimal. See some other external makeovers you can do with your garden at this time of year. Here’s another article showing what you can do to achieve a great look with a small garden.



This is the view standing at the front window (behind the shrubs and plants I planted). You can see the bamboos and the now-thriving firs which were at the side of the garden when we moved. The bamboos have filled the gaps between the firs seen  in the first picture




This picture of the front garden was taken from across the road soon after we moved. The vans outside belonged to the builders who were doing major remodelling and building inside (and outside) of the house at the time.
This is a picture taken after 4 weeks of planting. You’ll notice that there is a second fir on the right of the area at this point. Sadly, this one died during its first winter.
After the front garden make-over you can see how the ‘green’ has improved the look of the entire property. As the plants grow bigger, they’ll be trimmed into shapes and neatened up. All the plants are now twice as big as they were when first taken out of their pots and planted into the ground.
Another view of the front wall, taken from the front window.

What I did to achieve the front garden makeover (without spending)

1. I used plants I already had. I’d nursed some plants which I dug out from our old garden months before we moved house. These were planted outside the front window. I chose plants which were low-growing because of the security issue of having larger plants under your front window. You can read about DIY home security in this article.

2. I used one potted bamboo I had. Divided it into 6 small parts, and planted it alternately between the gaps in the firs. They’ve now almost filled up all the spaces.

3. I helped to remake the plant box. I use this to ‘house’ various seasonal plants during the year. I didn’t plant anything in the box itself because this would’ve meant I was limited to what I could use there. Instead, I’ve planted up two separate plastic plant pots (with different flowering plants) which are the right size to fit into the outer wooden box . I’m free to swap the plastic boxes round once they go out of season.

4. The front garden makeover wouldn’t be the same without a hanging basket. Unfortunately the flowers had already flowered when the latest pictures were taken.

What other tips have you got for a front garden make-over? Have you been able to achieve the look you wanted without spending too much? Please leave your tips in the comment boxes below. Thank you. 

If you have a much bigger garden or are planning a large scale re-landscaping project, it is a good idea to invest in some professional grade equipment have equipment for every construction need, making a month’s-long project achievable in a few short weeks.

You can also see more articles like this one on our exterior designs page.

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About Anne

Anne Lyken-Garner, the owner of DIY Projects is the published author of the inspirational memoir, Sunday's Child (available on Amazon). She's also a freelance writer, blogger and editor. She writes for, and manages 4 blogs. See how Anne can help you with editing your site at the Hire an Editor page above.

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10 Responses to Front Garden Make-Over

  1. Mark Brien May 16, 2013 at 12:38 pm #

    Cleaning up your front garden is a great way to boost your properties value. I took a pair of sheers to mine and it made a massive difference. I spent the best part of a bank holiday weekend getting it ready for summer, but it’s easy to spot the improvements.

    I like the idea of using hanging baskets but they just don’t fit in with my garden so we went with pots on waste height stands.

    • Anne May 16, 2013 at 5:28 pm #

      Yes, indeed Mark. The front garden is the first thing people judge about how well your house is loved and being cared for. If your front garden is run down, it can lower your property’s value without people even stepping inside your front door.

      Thanks for your input.

  2. Jeo October 1, 2012 at 11:07 am #

    Garden is a place where you can unwind and relax. After a whole day of stressful work in your office sitting in your own garden and sipping delicious coffee is the closest you will ever reach to heaven while you are on earth. At least that is all that I crave for when I am sitting in the closed room of my office. I love my garden.

  3. Carlos September 26, 2012 at 9:36 am #

    Front gardens play a very important role in deciding the status of the house. If the front garden is cluttered then people will no doubt think that the people living in the house are not bothered about taking care of their surroundings. To avoid this you must keep the front gardens maintained. Moreover its the residents only who are using the front garden daily, it does not look good to have a bad front garden.

  4. James September 24, 2012 at 8:10 am #

    When I was small and used to stay with my parents I had a lovely garden in our house. My mom was an enthusiastic gardener. She would try various new things on her garden. Her garden was really beautiful and we kids were in awe of it. I liked helping her and see her work at every chance I got. Her garden would be blooming with flowers and vegetables all year long. Then when I grew up I left that house and relocated in the city. Here all we have is huge buildings and no greenery whatsoever. I really miss having a garden of my own.

    • Anne October 1, 2012 at 11:51 am #

      Have you considered using potted plants and paint to ‘liven’ up your front space? Even one potted plant can make a huge difference. I recommend it!

  5. James September 15, 2012 at 8:42 am #

    Front gardens do say a lot about the people who live in the house. A dirty or unmaintained front garden does not reflect good things about the people.So one should always take good care of the front garden. The blog provides some real examples of how one’s front garden can be renovated. The use of before and image photos make you realize the difference. This blog will actually help in getting rid of a dirty looking front garden.
    James recommends you read..Shutters HingesMy Profile

    • Anne October 1, 2012 at 11:49 am #

      I love my front garden, but it looks the way it does only because of the hard work we’ve put in. I definitely recommend doing what you can to improve the front of your house. As you rightly said, it reflects on the owner.

  6. Judy
    September 1, 2012 at 7:08 pm #

    You are so right. The changes make a huge impact on the appearance of the house.

    • Anne September 1, 2012 at 7:10 pm #

      Thanks, Judy. Our front garden looks so much better now. It looks like someone actually lives there.

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