Beautiful beach garden ideas from Whitstable

Beautiful beach garden ideas from Whitstable


Would you like to create a seaside
garden? I’m here in Whitstable on the Kent coast in southeast England,
where once a year – around the 10th of June – about a dozen private gardens open
to the public. I’m going to give you a bit of a preview of those gardens, and
an idea of what you might see if you came. And also a little trip around
Whitstable to see what the essential ingredients of a seaside garden are, so
that you can take it back and create it in your own garden, if that’s what you’d
love to do. Otherwise just enjoy the idea that we’re here at the beach. It’s Alexandra
from the Middlesized Garden YouTube channel with tips, ideas and inspiration
for your garden. Firstly think about echoing the architectural and natural
elements of the seaside area you’re inspired by. In Whitstable, this is black
weather-boarded fishermens’ huts, oyster shells, weathered oak from the
breakwaters, seagulls and big open skies. Look out for local brick, clay and tile –
and think about whether yours is a brightly colored seaside, such as the
Caribbean, or maybe in a different way Margate, or whether your sea is in soft
shades of green, grey and gulls egg blue. Many of the historic cottages in
Whitstable are painted white, and this is always a good beach garden colour. This
garden in Clare Road is part of Whitstable Open Gardens, and the owners
have painted everything white – their shed, fence, storage units and so on,
which is a really clever way of making quite standard units look special. Blue
is of course very much a seaside colour and I saw lots of lovely blue window
boxes along the beach at Whitstable. Shacks and sheds are very important on
beaches and in Britain, the beach hut is an architectural speciality of its own. In itself, a beach hut can just be a standard shed but people paint them in a
variety of colors, and add all sorts of decorative and homely touches. So do this
for your shed too. There’s very little soil on a beach so most
things will have to be grown in pots, window boxes or containers. And recycled
containers have a nicely shipwrecked feel. If you want to grow vegetables
you’ll need raised beds, so these can be considered beach gardening. Plants
themselves have to be resilient as they face wind, salt water and poor or
no soil. Look for wild versions of our garden flowers, such as
wild mallow or wild salsify. And of course erigeron are actually called seaside
daisies in some parts of the world. Fennel, rosemary, grasses and poppies do
well too, and large leaf plants like crambe. They all grow directly out of
the shingle – you don’t have beds in seaside gardens. And seaside gardens
don’t have lawn, although they may have clumps of grasses or wild flowers growing straight out of the ground. You can
buy different shades of gravel for your beach garden, so do think about what look
you want before ordering. Or you can buy shingle or even cockleshells, which are a
by-product of the shellfish industry so at least they’re not mined. I’ve done a
post and video about cockleshell paths and there’ll be a link to this in the
description below. All sorts of things wash up on ashore so create a beach-comber feel in your seaside garden with recycled and vintage items or
souvenirs – shells, netting and anything you could have made yourself while
idling on a hot day is also beach gardening. Seaside communities have often
been poor, so there’s a great sense of resourcefulness. Artists have also been
very attracted to the light of the coast, so artistic quirkiness is another beach garden
element – it’s very seaside garden, for example, to
use up scraps of brick, stone or tile or sea glass like these clever paths in a
pretty garden in Whitstable Open Gardens. Stroll along the beach in Whitstable – or in many other
British seaside towns – and you’ll see a wonderful variety of beach gardens,
usually with places to sit where you can watch the change in light and the sunset.
Seaside garden furniture usually has to be put away in winter, because of the
weather so it’ll be collapsible or it will need to be cut from sturdy oak or
rock. I hope you enjoy creating your seaside garden or dreaming about
creating it and if you love beach gardens, please do hit like and I’ll look
out for more to feature on The Middlesized Garden YouTube channel. And if you haven’t subscribed, please do – upload garden tips ideas and inspiration every
Saturday