‘Dream’ gardens centre on wildlife and biodiversity

Wildlife habitats including real grass, planters, and wildflower meadows are the top features homeowners desire to create a ‘dream garden’ – offering landscapers an insight to potential future projects.

In a recent survey of 2,001 people, real grass, trees, and seating areas (27%) topped the list of features people want to add to their outdoor space to create a ‘dream back garden’, followed by planters (26%), wildflower meadows (25%), storage (25%) and bird baths (24%).

To create a ‘dream front garden’, people would be most likely to seek out planters and hanging baskets (21%), trees (20%), and raised bedding areas (15%). Other popular features for the front of the house include a new driveway (14%), storage to hide bins (13%) and privacy screening from neighbours (12%). In the survey, over two fifths of people said they care more about the appearance of the front of their home – including their garden – now, compared to two years ago.

According to the research from hard landscaping specialist Marshalls, the features people would least like to see in their garden include a swimming pool (9%), bike storage (8%), outdoor gym (7%) and built in trampoline for children (6%).

Speaking about the findings, which are outlined in the Marshalls Improving the Landscape white paper, Ben Warren, Managing Director of Landscape Products at Marshalls, said: “Gardens play a huge role in the way we use our properties, so as those responsible for designing and installing outdoor spaces, landscapers are influential in helping homeowners realise the full potential of their outdoor space.

“These findings show exactly what homeowners are looking for, giving landscapers an insight into exactly what their order books could look like for the next 12 months. However, while homeowners want to make changes that have a big impact on their space, they need their landscaper to work with stretched budgets. The good news is that our findings show simple, naturistic touches will impress customers most, and better yet, the things they’re looking for most all link back to sustainability and the protection of our planet.

“By taking on board these findings and creating designs which integrate these key features, landscapers will encourage more homeowners to hire an expert for their next garden project. Plus, it’ll mean more gardens across the UK are packed with biodiverse schemes which cater for all – something we can all agree is a positive step.”

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