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How To Create Privacy Without A Fence In A Small Garden

How To Create Privacy Without A Fence In A Small Garden

client case studies garden design for specific spaces

Do you know the feeling? You have been happy with the situation, and then there will be something that will change everything. It starts to annoy and eventually ruins the thing that you used to enjoy.

For example, think of your yard, which you like. It has provided you with relaxation, peaceful moments in the morning with a cup of coffee in your hands, and abundant greenery to enjoy.

Then suddenly, the city decides to implement a street parking area right next to your yard. Just a few meters from your border hedge and right in front of your home windows. An annoyance that you can't go unnoticed no matter how hard you try.

That's exactly what happened to Minna.


Plan B aka how to create privacy F-A-S-T

Minna had quite a new small garden with a lawn, middle height hedges along the borders, and some newly created flowerbeds. She enjoyed her garden and had begun to dream about a cozy wooden terrace. Then it happened!


Above: The yard at the time of the consultation visit BEFORE the makeover

The town municipals decided to turn the road beside her backyard into a roadside parking area. The parked cars were the first thing she saw when waking up in the morning. Furthermore, the vehicles would be just next to the terrace she was dreaming of having one day! Minna wasn't desperate for long, and she decided it was time to take action!

"Since the city did not reverse its decision, I needed plan B, aka new ideas on building privacy for the backyard," Minna said. 


Above: The yard at the time of the consultation visit BEFORE the makeover 

Minna didn't stop but took action. "I had already outlined different options for my backyard. However, the yard needed pretty big changes, so I decided to use the professional services. I was browsing the internet and found many garden designers, but Sari immediately seemed like a person who does her work with a big heart. I also liked the gardens Sari had designed and the solutions she had sketched in garden magazines."

Minna booked her consultation, and we discussed the situation and her demands for the backyard. I received good background information and photos of the yard, which I got acquainted with well before our consultation meeting.


Above: Minna's cat, Pyry, watched behind the glass door what we were doing in the backyard.


In mid-April, we met in Minna's backyard and set out to design privacy screening solutions for her garden. The main focus was on the ideas that would divert the attention from the cars parked on the street.

Implementing the necessary privacy in a small yard can be challenging. Therefore, you need to combine several elements to create a beautiful and practical privacy screen.


The New Plan For the Garden Comes Together

Minna had dreamed of having a wooden terrace before cars started to get parked behind her back border hedge. It was sensible to design the decking simultaneously as we developed solutions to increase the garden's privacy.

During the site consultation, we developed various options with Minna and modified them into the best possible combination to create a garden both Minna and Pyry would enjoy.

Firstly we planned the place and the shape of the new terrace near the stairs leading to Minna's living room.

Then it was time to create some privacy for relaxing on the terrace area. A fence was not an option. Instead we wanted to create a layered screen that would use the space effectively, but feel abundant and lush.


To create a layered privacy screen, we:
  1. kept the medium height boundary hedge and the tree growing in the corner of the site,
  2. added some wooden trellises for growing flowering vines like clematis, and
  3. placed a clipped thuja hedge to give evergreen screening.


We chose thujas and vines that were fast to grow to the desired height so that they provide lushness for the yard and at the same time effectively hide cars parked along the street.


Above: The garden AFTER the makeover


We planned the yard's:

  • functions,
  • routes, and
  • stepping stones around the corner of the house leading to the front yard.

We considered:

  • views,
  • planned the best places for the planting areas, and
  • chose the plants.

We looked closely at:

  • the lines,
  • their starting and ending points, and
  • the size of the wooden terrace

so that Minna could have the terrace and the trellises made by the builder.

She decided to:

  • dig the planting areas by herself and
  • do the planting.


From a Vision To a Dream Garden

Next June, I received a message from Minna. She sent me lovely photos of her new terrace area, trellises, and the surrounding planting areas.

She wrote, "The yard is now partially finished. The main thing is the terrace and the trellises for vines creating a privacy screen and architectural structure. The other thing I like especially is the thuja hedge, and I expect it to grow and develop my haven in the garden."



Minna continued, "I will set up mood lighting on the vines at dusk and look forward to wonderful soft late summer evenings. The yard became one extra room, a living space in the middle of everyday life. Perhaps the best acknowledgment was when the neighborhood ladies also came to praise and marvel at her new yard when the terrace was ready. I enjoy being in my backyard now!"


All photos AFTER the makeover ©Minna


Minna's cat, Pyry, had also gotten to the new yard and had a great time! "My cat enjoys the yard now! There are nice hiding places and routes to explore the garden, and there are the sun lounger and chairs to lay on them. I also dreamt of having more "save the insects" plants in the yard. It is so nice to watch butterflies, bees, and other insects visiting the flower beds."

Minna changed her unfortunate situation into bliss. I was so happy to see her garden and all she had done!



Time To Take Action:

Take your notepad, go to your garden and sit in your favorite chair on the terrace. Look around. Is there something that needs fixing? Do you need more privacy to have your garden haven just there? List ideas that might improve the situation. Take my Garden Style Quiz to see how the plants, elements, or other ideas you listed would suit your garden setting. You can also book the Online Garden Design Session, and we can figure out your garden design problems together. I'm happy to help you.






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