Looking for patio gardening ideas to turn your outdoor space into a gorgeous green retreat? Whatever the size of your plot, introducing plants is a great way to add color and life, soften paved edges, and create a relaxing place that you'll love to spend time in. But once you've got your stunning outdoor furniture, fire pits, and on-trend paving sorted, plants are the perfect finishing touch. If you really want to turn heads, why not integrate a tree into your space?
Add a sense of artfully-overgrown, old-world charm to your patio gardening ideas by introducing the best climbing plants. Whether you opt for foliage (try Virginia creeper for colorful leaves) or florals (passionflower or star jasmine are lovely choices), they are bound to boost the atmosphere in your patio space whilst softening your garden wall ideas.
Add to the immersive vibe with climbers creeping up trellises, as seen here. Dot around small trees for your patio gardening ideas (Image credit: Amara)
Transport yourself to the Med with small trees such as olive or fig which grow well in containers on patios or as part of your decking ideas.
Olive trees like a sunny spot and although they're naturally drought tolerant, when planted in pots they need regular watering – don't let the compost dry out. We love how this duo complements the surrounding color scheme, offering a sultry yet sophisticated vibe. Try a freestanding shelf for your patio gardening ideas (Image credit: Colin Poole/Future)
Give your patio gardening ideas a unique look with upcycled furniture (Image credit: Colin Poole/Future) Love the idea above but looking for something that feels a little more unique than freestanding shelves? Arrange flower-filled containers on top, for a lovely addition to your patio gardening ideas.
You can use the bottom shelf to store watering cans and other garden bits and bobs, too – an easy solution for garden storage ideas in a small space.
Plant on-trend succulents as part of your patio gardening ideas (Image credit: Jamie Mason) Striking succulents are all the rage when it comes to indoor plants.
If you fancy adding in less hardy succulents such as echeverias, plant these in pots, then bring them inside over the colder months. Repurpose an old ladder for your patio gardening ideas (Image credit: Colin Poole) If you love a rustic look then leave it to weather naturally.
It'll make a lovely addition to more informal patio gardening ideas.
Up the privacy levels of your plot (Image credit: Lizzie Orme) A raised wooden trough or planter is ideal because you can position it in the sunniest spot on your patio.
Surround your patio space with pretty pollinators (Image credit: Little Greene) Raised garden beds bordering your patio offer a feast of color and scent at eye level when you're dining alfresco. Who needs to travel halfway round the world when you can bring tropical garden ideas straight into your own backyard? Edge your patio with ornamental grasses to add height and movement.
A spot of DIY can lead to fabulously unique pieces for your space (Image credit: Colin Poole) Then, all you need to do it plant up the drawers generously with your favorite blooms.
Create a playful look with this budget-friendly idea (Image credit: Lizzie Orme) Don't forget to take a look at our budget garden ideas for more inspiration. Pink and mauve tones make a pretty scene (Image credit: Lizzie Orme)
You can find more inspiration on garden color schemes in our guide. Symmetry has always been a hit in formal garden design and you can use it on even the smallest patio to create a sense of visual balance. Add one of the best bistro sets for a charming scene.
Try growing herbs upright for your patio gardening ideas (Image credit: Simon Scarboro) Offering that winning combo of looking good and being easy to maintain, box hedging is the ideal species for formal, low hedges or borders thanks to its dense evergreen leaves that can be easily trimmed into a neat shape. Keep it looking tip-top with a pair of the best garden shears. Border your paving with a line of lavender (Image credit: Claire Lloyd-Davies) Lavender might be at its absolute best over the summer with those amazingly fragrant purple flowers, but its foliage looks good year-round, so it's an excellent choice for an easy-to-grow border shrub for your patio. Fill your seating space with colorful patio gardening ideas (Image credit: Colin Poole/Future)
'There is nothing quite like the taste and smell of homegrown mint,' they say. Or, how about elevating your G&T by adding a sprig of homegrown basil, along with a crack of black pepper and lemon wedge, they suggest. Other good contenders for patio gardening ideas include the well-loved pelargoniums.
Bring them indoors during winter to liven up a conservatory or kitchen window. If you're looking for architectural structure, try agapanthus, as recommended by Thompson & Morgan (opens in new tab). Of course, roses definitely need a mention too when it comes to patio gardening ideas, especially if you're looking for show-stopping fragrance.
David Rice from the RHS (opens in new tab) suggests 'Lady Emma Hamilton' for a citrusy scent, apricot petals, and disease-resistant foliage.