June's #FeatureFri guest post is brought to you by orangery, veranda and conservatory experts Auburn Hill. In this article they share their fabulous all-weather ideas to help you make the most of your outside space.
Our gardens are our little tranquil oasis of calm in the warmer months, where we can host barbeques filled with family and friends, watch flowers bloom in spring, and enjoy the fleeting sunshine when it does finally show its face.
Come winter we get set to enjoy a dose of fresh autumn air, hang up the Christmas decorations, and play in the snow if we're lucky enough to see a sprinkling.
A desirable garden is on many homeowner's wishlists, so take a look at some of our suggestions to keep your garden looking wonderful all year round and to allow you to make the most of it too.
Upgrade from shed to summer house for a functional garden room that you'll actually use, rather than storing the lawnmower and every other garden tool. Use it as an escape from the house, home office, playroom or movie room - the choice is yours!
Use it as an escape when the sun is beating down to avoid the heat, or as a cosy bolthole in winter complete with blankets. The best part about a garden house is you can design and style them to tie in with the rest of your garden and home to create a bespoke retreat.
Lighting and Heating
If there's one thing we lack here in the UK then it's the warmth. Sadly, the British Isles aren't blessed with fair weather year round, and with summer often unreliable too, it becomes essential to add some light and warmth to our gardens to keep them active year round.
Line flower beds with lamps and string fairy lights along fence panels to let the light shine. Use solar powered lights to save on bills and do your little bit for the environment. Keep the warmth with a garden chimenea or fire pit - perfect for summer nights and chilly winter evenings.
You may be wondering why removing part of your garden in favour of an extension can actually improve your garden, but believe us when we say that it can. Whilst it's lovely to have vast open land, when it comes down to it, if you have enough space for a table and chairs, flowerbeds and a small area to run around in, you don't need much more.
Adding an orangery or conservatory will allow you to enjoy your garden from both the inside and outside. Bi-folding doors attached to an orangery can be opened up to bridge the gap between both areas, allowing for a big open space which you can enjoy whether you're indoors or out.
Investing in Furniture
It can be tempting to take advantage of the cheaper outdoor furniture deals that are now often readily available, but investing in high quality items will help them to stand the test of time against regular wear and tear, and all the seasons too.
It's also worth purchasing a good quality cover to protect your furniture from the elements throughout the year.
With so many places to seek garden inspiration - Pinterest, RHS Chelsea Flower Show and your local garden centre to name just a few - you're spoilt for choice when it comes to gathering ideas to transform your garden. Take a look at the theme you've chosen for your home, or the room which opens out into the garden. Do you want something which matches or contrasts to the design?
The focal point of the garden should be the colourful flower beds, so make sure you do your research on what to plant and when, and what needs a little TLC at certain times of the year.
Daffodils and other spring bulbs are best planted in November time for an early start on next year's display, and summer flowering shrubs, wisteria and roses should be pruned in August once they've finished blooming.
Is your garden in full bloom? If so we would LOVE to see a picture! You can tweet it to us here.
Finally, for inspiration for inside your home, check out last month's #FeatureFri article, "5 Ways Great Kitchen Designs Can Transform Your Property"
Disclaimer: Guest blog posts on the Martin and Co blog are written by external companies. Martin and Co do not endorse the products or services of these companies.