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6 ways to improve your small courtyard

Dola RC Dola RC
Well Walk Asian style garden by KSR Architects Asian
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Throw open the bedroom window of your 24th floor apartment and pause for a while. Look over the city to the limits of your vision. What do you see? Tall buildings, some rising even higher than yours; ground cloaked in grey asphalt; miniature vehicles running frantically here and there…

Look towards the sky. If you are lucky enough to catch a glimpse of it, in all probability you will see its pretty face covered in dust and smoke rising from below. Now, survey your own apartment. The phalaenopsis, vanda and dendrobium that you are caring for so diligently have now grown big enough to give flowers in most vivid colours. Your indoor rock garden is now smiling and thanking you for caring about them in the last few years. 

Your own apartment is wearing a most cheerful look, because you now have that one thing that this city so sorely misses – a patch of greenery. There are also a few, like you, still retain a patch of green in their courtyard and are striving hard to keep it beautiful and let it augment the beauty of our own existence. This post will help everyone to learn how to increase the charm of that small patch of green even further.

Decorate the walls

Deck up the garden walls with a suitable combination of bright colours, mosaic, coloured bricks, tiles and random rocks. This will help you to create a small yet cheerful place to sit down and appreciate the marvels of nature. You can even ask your dear ones to join in and enjoy a cup of afternoon tea. Do not forget to place lots of potted flowers, orchids, ferns, bonsai and cacti. 

Plants like bougainvillea and poinsettia grow well in pots as well as the soil bed created for them. They are sturdy and can withstand a wide variation in temperature and humidity. You can also have chosen creepers like hydrangea, campsis and macfadyena to complement your beautiful courtyard wall. Prune them well and in time so that your neighbours do not come to you complaining about their unruly behaviour.

Welcome in nature

Thomas Hardy called nature 'a face on which time makes but little impression'. It is a face that is slowly becoming obscure from our crowded streets. Invite it and let it be your guest. Arrange a home for it in your small courtyard. In time you will also get to host a few other equally welcome guests, such as the birds and butterflies.

Plant such species that are heat and humidity tolerant like hibiscus, verbena, rose moss, zinnia etc. Among fruits and vegetables watermelon, cucumber, okra, eggplant and beans thrive under hot and humid conditions. Red hot bell peppers love being in such places and help to keep your garden insect free. You can now add that zesty flavour in your cooked food or pizzas whenever you wish to.

Create a water body

Consider having a small but charming lotus pond, fish pond or bird bath. They need not be mutually exclusive. Just ensure having aquarium fishes and not those that prove to be a sumptuous choice for the birds. You will need to develop a bit of skills to maintain any one or all of these, but it will be a worthwhile occupation. Gold fishes symbolise abundance and may bring you an unprecedented stroke of luck! You can also think of having a small fountain installed in your courtyard.

Use garden furniture

Have garden furniture that allows you to sit and relax during your free time without creating any clutter. A small courtyard can have lightweight wrought iron or wicker chairs, hammocks, reclining or lounge chairs. A couple of rustic benches will also look gorgeous if you can surround it with lots of flowers and foliage. Create a canopy overhead so that on warmer days you can enjoy a comfortable outing in your own courtyard. You can use wood or bamboo trellises as well. Decorate it further with the help of lively creeping plants. Cherish the luxury of having a glamorous courtyard. To learn more about garden furniture check our this post here.

Create a meditation corner

Place suitable statues or icons surrounded by plants, flowers and, if possible, water bodies. Let this be your sanctuary of peace. You need not be a mystic to enjoy such a pleasure as this. From time to time, we all need an hour or two to spend only with ourselves, engage in a sort of dialogue, clear the clutters of our minds and plunge back into the current of life rejuvenated. Where best to do this than your own courtyard?

Light up your courtyard

To create a romantic corner or simply to enjoy a calm evening under the starry sky, do not forget having proper lighting fixtures in place. If you wish to entertain guests or have occasional dinner in this area you will have to invest in proper task lighting. From wall mounted lanterns, low voltage deck lighting to string lights the options the many. Depending on the availability of space, you can choose any one or a combination of these. 

Make sure you have fixtures that are not only aesthetically pleasing, but are also energy efficient. Candles will do a great job of creating the right ambience during those special moments between you and your partner. A lantern with pillar candle like this one designed by L’Argania will be beautiful choice for any occasion.

What do you think of these courtyards? How have you decorated yours? Let us know!
Modern houses by Casas inHAUS Modern

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