3 5 Gardening hacks that won’t break the bank By The Bower Team / In Home Improvement With the weather brightening up and your spring gardening complete, why not try these simple, budgeted gardening hacks to make your unique space a little prettier for the summer. Great for a small space If your backyard is a little on the small side, then give the illusion of more space by using a mirror. If correctly placed it can create a whole new dimension and make your garden look twice the size. It doesn’t have to be too costly either. Take a look round charity shops or go on a boot sale hunt and “bag a bargain!” It’s an effective way to make a small garden feel bigger and helps lighten up closed off areas. To make the illusion more effective, try growing plants around it so it blends in and looks more like a hidden entrance to another part of the garden. When trying to find a place for the mirror, make sure you check what it’s reflecting, as if it reflects the house this could ruin the illusion. Try a few different locations so you get the best result. Flowers all year round A little hack to get those hanging baskets in bloom all year round – fake flowers. It’s a one-off expense that lasts for years and adds constant colour to your garden. No longer will you look outside in the colder months and see the bleak colourless garden; fake flowers brighten up the dreariest of days! You could try a few different things, such as arranging them in vases, baskets, window boxes or straight into the ground. It’s best to use a foam oasis to push the flowers into to make sure they are secure in the pot. Cover with soil and finish off with pebbles so it looks authentic. Now you’re ready to enjoy your bloomin’ garden all year round – lovely. Hanging tea lights Try adding some decoration to your garden with these fabulous hanging tea lights. You can pick up some glass candle holders/baubles, which look great on their own – but why not make them even prettier and paint them with unique designs to hang around the garden. It’s easy to do and great fun! You’ll just need some glass paint and you’re ready to create some beautiful ornaments. Once hanging with the candles lit it makes for a stunning summers evening. Lucky stones Stones with naturally occurring holes in are considered lucky. And they also make for quirky garden ornaments. Take a look round the garden and rummage through any gravel/pebbles you have and see if you can find some of these lucky stones. When you’ve collected a few, thread them on a wire to hang around the garden. However, if searching high and low for “lucky stones” in isn’t your idea of fun, then perhaps make other pebble ornaments. Simple paint them with pretty pictures or just plain pastel colours and lay them in flowerbeds or plant pots to offer an unexpected touch. They can really brighten up the garden and make it unique. Mad Hatters Tea Party If you’re after a Mad Hatter inspired garden then try this cheap hack to add charm. Simply use old teacups and teapots around the garden. You can use them as plant pots, or hang them in trees filled with bird food for a quirky bird-feeder. If you’re lucky enough to have hordes of delicate porcelain cups that are no longer of use then it also doubles as the kitchen spring clean. But if not then you can always find plenty in charity shops or car boot sales.