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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Practical inspiration for re-vamping small gardens, 28 Sept. 2012
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This review is from: Ann-Marie Powell's Plans for Small Gardens (Paperback)
Bought this book after seeing it mentioned in a weekend newspaper (the Independent I think but don't quote me). Having just bought a terrace cottage in London with a small badly overgrown and unloved rear garden (40 feet long, 13 wide) and having no garden design experience this book was a great find. It doesn't assume the reader is a gardening expert, nor is it dumbed down, although there are limits to the level of detail provided. Nevertheless overall very happy that it meets our needs e.g. help with inspiration, planning and how to approach some of the prep work. We're still likely to hire someone with experience to do some if not most of the landscaping/planting to ensure it gets done properly although those more industrious or experienced might tackle that themselves.

The book contains 10 different garden designs, each with a different theme e.g. romantic, minimalist, low-maintenance, rustic etc. Each garden design contains:
- photos of the actual garden it was based on
- high-level plan (sketch of the layout pointing out which areas contain plants vs paving/decking/pebbles etc)
- planting plan (specifics on where each type of plant goes)
- shopping list (what to buy for the hard landscaping and planting)
- brief explanation sections for the hard landscaping and planting aspects e.g. why certain elements were chosen, their benefits etc
- method section - a brief step by step guide on how to tackle the job from clearance of the existing garden to building features/fencing and of course planting.
- and finally I think my favourite section, Maintenance - explains for each month of the calender year what maintenance is required for each garden type to keep it looking its best

There's also separate sections with general tips on techniques e.g. how to build a deck, drawing plans, preparing soil, hiring a gardener etc.

I like the way a sort of template is provided for each garden style, and the consistent format used throughout the book. For us there was one particular style in the book that closely matched our needs but we're also able to take inspiration from another garden or two in there, and will modify other elements to suit our taste.

Minor criticisms - some of the gardens don't look that small by typical London standards, although perhaps the photo angles make them look more spacious than they are. Actual dimensions would have helped put the photos in perspective and give a direct comparison to your own. Also an indicative price range for the garden landscaping and planting - even a ballpark would be useful.

Doesn't provide a hugely detailed fool-proof plan per garden - you still need to do some research and think about what will suit your own space. But for a gardening novice it does pack a lot of information in and if you're after practical inspiration and guidance for revamping your small garden space you should find this useful too.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring Ideas, 26 Sept. 2012
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J. White - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Ann-Marie Powell's Plans for Small Gardens (Paperback)
This is full of great ideas for transforming your back garden. Really easy to use and giving great complete plans for how to redesign a small space. You can see why the author has won awards for her garden designs. An excellent read for anyone wanting to make the most of their garden no matter how small they are.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great ideas, 26 Sept. 2012
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This review is from: Ann-Marie Powell's Plans for Small Gardens (Paperback)
i don't have a big garden but was looking online for a good book guide to help me plan properly the space that i do have to work with. i came across this book and popped into the bookshop to have a look through the ideas that Ann-Marie was featuring in her book. i liked that the plans were easy to follow and i managed to create the perfect garden for me using two of the plans from her chapters on urban gardens and minimalist. Well worth a look through for brilliant ideas.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars dreaming of transformations, 29 July 2013
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This review is from: Ann-Marie Powell's Plans for Small Gardens (Paperback)
I love this book! The layout, designs, commentary, all great. I like the fact that whilst you can see a beautiful design, the book not only tells you how to achieve/ plan it out, it also gives you a month by month breakdown of what to do when for your plants. Brilliant.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspirational, 26 Sept. 2012
This review is from: Ann-Marie Powell's Plans for Small Gardens (Paperback)
I bought this book hoping that it would help me work out what to do with the small (and awkwardly shaped) garden I have, and it has been an absolute joy. Clear, concise and practical, Ann-Marie has given me so many ideas and now I am excited to see my garden come together, rather than feeling completely overwhelmed! The book is laid out in themes-so you have an urban garden, a country garden, a family garden, low maintenance and so on, and for each she gives a detailed plan, suggestions for plants, paving, seating, decking, even lighting! It has really inspired me and made me want to make the most of the space I have, and I would recommend this for anyone who needs a bit of help with their own space. 10/10.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Very happy with this book, 2 Jan. 2013
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This review is from: Ann-Marie Powell's Plans for Small Gardens (Paperback)
I saw it advertised in a magazine and it is a great 'recipe' style book for small gardends with lots of innovative ideas.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 25 Dec. 2014
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This review is from: Ann-Marie Powell's Plans for Small Gardens (Paperback)
Good service, no problems
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 19 Dec. 2014
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This review is from: Ann-Marie Powell's Plans for Small Gardens (Paperback)
Helpful plans
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Handy Book to have around, 4 Jun. 2013
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This review is from: Ann-Marie Powell's Plans for Small Gardens (Paperback)
Gave us lots of ideas on how to reshape our garden - have not started yet but keep referring to the book
for tips and planting, very good book! would recommend for small gardens.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good book for planning your garden, 20 Nov. 2012
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This review is from: Ann-Marie Powell's Plans for Small Gardens (Paperback)
A well laid out and easy to follow book, well written and easy to understand.

I would recommend this book to anyone, even if you have a big garden!
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Ann-Marie Powell's Plans for Small Gardens
Ann-Marie Powell's Plans for Small Gardens by Ann-Marie Powell (Paperback - 17 May 2012)
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