The gardens that make up our residential neighbourhoods have begun to look much different than they did a decade ago. A new generation of homeowners coupled with some significant social and cultural changes have led to a major upheaval in home and garden design. What were once typical features of a garden are now becoming increasingly rare and, instead of BBQ events and tidy lawns, a new host of activities are taking place.
Return Of The Smallholding
Against a backdrop of environmental concern and rising costs of living, a growing number of residents are taking to their gardens and considering how much utility they can extract from their own outdoor space. As a result, it is increasingly common to see neighbourhoods filled with food-growing homeowners, whose gardens are filled with vegetable patches instead of lawns
In addition, there are others who are taking things further, hosting chickens as a source of eggs and even bees as a source of honey, features that are making personal gardens seem more like miniature farms than the gardens many are familiar with.
In the wake of lockdowns and the pandemic, remote working figures have risen substantially, with a growing number of residents now finding themselves in need of a functioning office space within their own home. Gardens are, perhaps surprisingly, a great solution for this issue, with cabins and outbuildings offering an ideal professional and private space only a stone’s throw from the home.
Others are choosing to buy log cabins as places of personal pursuits, starting businesses in their own gardens. Sheds can become hair salons while summer houses become yoga studios. The creative possibilities are endless and many gardens are now becoming a place of business.
As the world becomes more environmentally conscientious, homeowners are transforming their gardens into sustainability endeavours, getting rid of harmful pesticides, and letting their lawns grow a little longer than usual.
One of the most common features of a modern garden is a compost system. Since food waste is one of the biggest contributors to a household’s carbon footprint, residents are seeking to minimise their impact as much as possible. Others are collecting rainwater for the purpose of tending to their garden, while some even set up small solar panels on their garden shed so as to charge their bikes and devices.
Those that let their gardens grow slightly longer, embracing movements like No Mow May, are doing so for the ecological benefit of local wildlife, since birds and insects are stripped of safety and food when lawns are mown.
Whether wanting to create a relaxing outdoor space to restore personal wellness or styling a zen garden for the pursuit of yoga, there is a new serenity taking over garden designs. Many aesthetics are chosen for the tranquillity they often have, designed with privacy and comfort in mind, all of which is chosen to give homeowners an environment within which they can escape the stressors of urban life and enjoy a moment of respite.