For many Londoners, small outdoor spaces are a fact of life.
But size doesn’t always matter when it comes to roof gardens and terraces – because it really is possible to create an amazing, beautiful outdoor space for your property.
And if you’re planning to sell your London home, a brilliantly designed, functional roof terrace could add considerable value, not to mention appeal.
Here, we’ll show off 10 great small terrace garden ideas that will really inspire you…
How do you plan a terrace garden?
Any garden revamp needs planning – and if you’re dealing with a small terrace or roof garden, it’s even more vital to have a good idea of how you want to use your space…
• Look at your terrace and draw a rough plan of how you want it to look
• Decide where you’ll place key pieces like plants and seating
• Think about the materials you want to use and the plants you’d like
• Set a realistic budget for your project
How can I make my terrace more beautiful?
There are lots of ways you can make a roof terrace more beautiful – and planting is key.
The biggest issue with roof terraces is how exposed to the elements they are.
So, try to go for plants that are robust to sun, wind and rain and can live happily in planters all year round:
• Slow-growing olive trees
• Vines and climbers
10 great roof terrace garden ideas
Often, knowing where to start with your terrace or roof garden is the toughest part of any project.
Take a look at these great ideas for inspiration…
1. Sumptuous seating
Seating will always be a key element of any roof terrace.
If you have the space, why not opt for a corner arrangement, which provides plenty of space for drinks in the late evening sunshine.
2. Precise planting
Nothing brings a bare roof terrace to life better than the right plants.
This terrace in Fulham has been beautifully kitted out with box planting like grasses and topiaries, with some added colour thrown in to really finish off the space.
3. Be inspired by Scandinavia
Even if your roof terrace is right in the heart of London, that doesn’t mean you can take inspiration from the wood tones of Scandinavia.
Simple seating and flooring made from smooth woods can turn your roof terrace from standard outdoor space into a modern haven of tranquility.
4. Bring the fire
Of course, the great British weather does have the all-too-frequent habit of spoiling our outdoor fun.
But those chilly evenings on your roof terrace can be warmed up with a focal point like a fire pit or chiminea.
5. Wonderful water
While you’d be forgiven for thinking water features are reserved for gardens on ground level, you’d be wrong.
A roof terrace water feature is not only a real talking point, but it will add a lovely sense of ‘zen’ to your outdoor space.
6. Be clever with lighting
The best way to make a smaller roof terrace feel more spacious is through clever lighting.
The right lighting will also create a lovely ambiance for drinks on the terrace after the sun’s gone down.
7. Make the most of your view
The best thing about living above ground level in London is the view.
So, try to balance the need for privacy with the drama of the skyline when planning your roof terrace.
8. Be bold with colour
If your roof terrace is decked out with planting and wood tones, don’t be afraid to throw a little colour into the mix with your furnishings.
9. Meals in the shade
Another great thing about roof terraces is the sunlight they enjoy.
But if you have space for a dining area, don’t forget a parasol to take the edge of the lunchtime sun while you’re eating.
10. Enhance your surroundings
London is home to some of the best period properties in the UK.
So, if you have a roof terrace that shows off stunning Victorian brick work or other period features, enhance them with climbing plants or ivy.