You’ve mown the lawn, grown the begonias and sown the sweet peas...now what? Now, it’s time to sit back, relax and admire your hard work! After all, what’s the point in making your garden glorious if you have no time to enjoy it?
With many of us facing another summer of staying put, it’s time to put away those passports and instead head for Destination Garden, where you might be surprised just how much there is to appreciate...
Garden for garnishes
Surely, one of the best ways to enjoy your garden in the summer is to admire your handiwork with a cold drink in hand? But, why not add the fruits of your labour to said drink to make it even more special?
It’s easy to grow plenty of garnishes for cocktails and other drinks right in your own outside space - herbs like mint, rosemary, basil, thyme and verbena all make great garnishes, and don’t forget about fruits, too - if you’ve been growing strawberries and cucumber in your garden, you’re almost halfway to having the ingredients for a fresh, fruit-filled Pimms!
Some flowers are also edible and look delectable in drinks - if you’ve got any borage knocking around, pick the flowers and freeze them in ice cube trays - they’ll brighten up any G&T!
Rosemary Gin Fizz recipe:
(makes one drink)
- 50ml of your favourite gin 1 tablespoon rosemary simple syrup (check out how to make your own here)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Soda water
- A rosemary sprig to garnish
Shake your gin, simple syrup and lemon juice in a cocktail shaker with ice, then strain into a chilled glass.
Add soda water to taste
Pop in a sprig of rosemary to garnish
Pick a good egg
When it comes to seating for your garden, you want something that’s comfy, allows some shelter from the sun’s rays and of course, looks stylish too. You might have seen egg chairs cropping up in magazine spreads and online; these hanging chairs are de rigueur right now, and offer a stylish and secluded spot in any garden. Available everywhere from Aldi to John Lewis, this is one trend you’ll definitely want to get on board with. After all, how better to enjoy your eggs in the morning than with a slice of sunshine?
Sleep under the stars
If the opportunity to get away on a much-needed holiday hasn’t presented itself this year, then don’t despair - glamping in your own back garden could still afford you some luxury away from home (but with the benefit of having a working toilet and shower just metres away.) And if you think your garden is a little too close to home why not try an idyllic glamping site set in a wildflower meadow surrounded by vines and hops in our very own Weald of Kent?
Lots of companies, both in Kent & Sussex and further afield now offer you the chance to hire a bell tent and have it pitched in your own back garden. Perfect for that real home away from home feeling, and also a great and affordable option should you have guests to stay and want to offer a unique alternative to the spare bedroom.
Get a pizza the action
Barbecues might be a British right of passage come summertime, but they’re not the only way to enjoy al fresco dining. Pizza ovens have become increasingly popular recently, with leading brand Ooni going from making £10million to £50million over the past two years. With gas fired, wood fired and even ovens you heat on your barbecue available on the market, adding pizzazz to your own pizzas is easier than ever. Plus, many of these ovens don’t have to be used exclusively for pizza; smoking meats, baking potatoes and even flame grilling your steaks can all be achieved.
Dabble in a paddle
With the school summer holidays on the horizon, you might be looking for simple ways to keep the kids entertained at home. Enter the paddling pool - an easy way to make a splash and cool the kids (and yourself) down in no time. Choose a smaller one for little kids and for dipping your toes in, or bigger options are available where the whole family can get in and enjoy some wet play.
Be a good sport
A paddling pool isn’t the only way to keep the kids busy in the garden - why not set up your own sports day? Minimal equipment is needed for this, but you can have hours of fun enjoying three legged races, egg and spoon relays and obstacle courses in even the smallest of outside spaces. You’ll get bonus points for offering ice creams as prizes, too.