Gardening is an interesting job.
With many varied jobs and roles within the team, every day is different.
At The Southwest London Gardener, we operate in Twickenham, Wandsworth and the surrounding areas of London.
So just what makes being a gardener in the capital so enjoyable?
Let’s find out.
1. The Challenge of Transforming Small Spaces
At around the size of half a tennis court, gardens in London are 26% smaller than the average across the rest of the country.
This means that many gardens we visit are rather on the small side.
This provides a challenge that we relish as a team.
It all starts with garden design. Every inch is important in a garden, but none more so than when the garden is below average size.
Sticking to the client’s brief of what they want in the garden and keeping it looking uncluttered and tidy can cause a few problems but working them out is something we love about the job.
Take this Battersea garden transformation for example.
Whilst not the biggest space, we managed to change the space from something that felt unwelcoming, into a delightful relaxing garden room that was perfect for the pets, kids, and adults to enjoy.
Small gardens come packed with challenges, but being able to make the most of them is definitely one of the perks of the job.
2. Add Some Nature to the City
London is a beautiful city and is blessed with some delightful green areas that the public can enjoy. In fact, you’re more likely to live five minutes from a park or communal garden in London than anywhere else in the UK.
While this can provide some fresh air and a spot of relaxation, it isn’t your own place.
So, how can city lovers bring nature to their back door?
Well, with a garden of course!
Gardens are great places for growing vegetables and inviting wildlife to your home.
Not got much space, why not grow vertically?
Got no planting area? Maybe it’s time to build some raised planting beds.
Just because you live in the city, doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy all of this in your outside space.
And that’s where we come in.
We love creating small spots of nature throughout London, and have turned urban spaces into green areas throughout our projects, such as adding these planting beds in Clapham and providing some dedicated space for growing herbs in this Wandsworth project.
Smelling the flowers and providing some much-needed energy and nutrients for the local insects is truly rewarding and can make you feel like you’re a million miles away from the city.
Not only that, but growing your own vegetables is a great way of providing nutritious, low-cost food and is a great way of staying physically and mentally fit, and just because you live in the city, doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy it.
3. Finding the Bright Spots in the Shade
Another challenge of urban gardening is finding sunlight.
Plants grow best with around eight hours of direct sunlight. This can be hard to find in gardens that are surrounded by high buildings.
So, how can you make sure that your plants will grow to their full potential?
It’s all about finding the perfect spot, and the perfect plants.
If a small corner of your garden gets the most sun, then this could be the perfect place to build your new planting bed.
If you have a garden that only gets the sun on one side, then why not grow your vegetables and flowers along this side?
Following the sun is a great way of getting your plants the vitamins and warmth that they require.
But not all gardens get sun, so what if you have a north-facing garden that is constantly in the shade, or you’re surrounded by a built-up area that blocks most of the sun.
Well, there are some plants that like a bit of shade, including beautifully bright fuchsias, begonias, viola and hellebore.
It’s a real thrill to be able to turn a dark, shady garden into something that is bursting with colour.
Whether it’s finding the perfect spot to plant or picking plants that can make the most of a dark garden, bringing some brightness to a London garden is always a pleasure.
4. No Job is the Same
Being a London gardener, we see plenty of different jobs coming our way.
There’s such a range of people and gardens that have varying wants and needs, and this is something that makes working in London a real treat.
One day we could be renovating a large Putney garden with a winding path running through it, the next we may be paving a small front garden in Worcester Park that was being pushed up by tree roots growing underneath.
We never know which area the enquiry will take us to next, who we will meet on the project, and what the job will entail, and this means we can never get bored!
From ripping up pavers and laying artificial turf, to planting trees and building large garden features, every job is different.
Around four out of five houses in London come with some form of garden space. When you consider there are over 3.5 million homes in this area, that makes a lot of gardens.
Variety is great in a job, and for this reason, working as a gardener in London is always enjoyable.
5. Delighting our Customers
The final benefit of being a London gardener, is knowing we are really making a difference to our customers.
As mentioned previously, around 80% of houses in London have a garden, but this is lower in some more built-up areas.
With garden space limited compared to other areas of the country, it can make a huge difference to someone to turn their outside space into something special.
If someone loves plants, the installation of planting beds can be a huge positive in their life.
If someone loves to socialise, building a garden with plenty of seating where they can host friends can really make someone summer.
We always strive to do the best job possible, and we’re delighted when we get positive feedback from our customers.
Whether you have a small garden, or something much larger, turning it into a place where you can relax, bask in the sun, and enjoy some time with family and friends can make a big change to someone’s life (whilst also adding huge value onto your home).
Gardening isn’t easy. It can be a physically demanding job, but when you step back after a project is finished, have pride in the work you’ve achieved, and see how happy the client is with what you’ve produced, it’s all worth it.
If you want to become a London gardener, then why not join the Southwest London Gardener team.
We’re always on the look out for new designers, landscapers, and horticulturalists so get in touch if this sounds like you.
Alternatively, if you’ve seen some of our projects throughout this article and like what you see, maybe we can help out at your home.
Get in touch today for a quote and a chat on what we can do for you.