For an object lesson on how to create a charming first garden on a tight budget, we take you to a small backyard in London’s Crofton Park neighborhood. There food writer Mina Holland and musician Freddie Denham-Webb have created an oasis in the city—complete with an American-style Big Green Egg grill.
What prompted the American barbecue invasion? “We’re on a street of what I figure were quite experimental Victorian houses. Ours is a purpose-built maisonette, and opposite there are cleverly laid-out cottages. It feels like it was a bit of a testing ground for small-space living,” Holland told The Modern House.
The table seats sits comfortably. Says Holland: “We have a lot of friends over, but we tend not to invite more than four at a time, so there’s six of us. That might change in summer because the garden feels like we have an extra room.”
In addition to a kitchen garden with herbs and strawberries, the courtyard has ornamental flowering plants, including lupines, daisies, and jasmine vines. In pots are olive tree topiaries (an olive tree is a good container plant, as it can withstand dry or windy conditions).