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Mark Lane at Hampton Court
As households across the UK look for ways to save money, garden designer and TV presenter Mark Lane stacked his garden with inspirational take home ideas.

BBC Morning Live’s resident gardener and Thrive ambassador Mark Lane demonstrated how gardeners can use household goods and equipment for cost effective gardening at this year’s RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival.

Mark’s RHS & BBC Morning Live Budget-Friendly Garden aimed to keep the nation growing for their health and wellbeing. The space was packed with flowers, fruit and vegetables, demonstrating that you don’t need a large garden to feed a family.

Clever upcycling ideas included re-using material such as wooden pallets as garden furniture and vertical planters. An old chest of drawers took centre-stage, its open drawers packed with flowers and plants. Mark also showed cost-effective ways to harvest water, indicating that it was possible to reduce water use over the dry summer months.

Recycled chest of drawers packed with flowers and plants
Recycled chest of drawers packed with flowers and plants

Mark also offered the following tips on how to cut costs whilst still enjoying the best your garden has to offer:

  • Make a list of what you want to achieve in the garden. Think about your borders, how far the plants you want will spread and how many you are going to need. Stick to your list at the garden centre – don’t be seduced by all the lovely colours and scents you’ll find there!
  • Sow from seed. A packet of seeds may contain 100 or 1,000 seeds, which is potentially the same amount of plants. Perennials will take a bit longer, but if you sow some annuals in the meantime, you will save money.
  • Save on plant food, Tomato feed is brilliant, a good all-rounder that is high in potassium and potash and it’s cheap.
  • Have a go at making your own feed out of nettles. Steep the nettles in a bucket of water with a lid as it will smell. Or use comfrey, which is easy to grow and, once steeped, will provide highly nutritious plant feed.
  • Buy smaller plants. You may have to be patient as smaller plants may not fill your space immediately but they can ultimately grow into healthier specimens.

For more ideas on budget friendly gardening, go to Thrive’s Get Gardening section here

Vertical living wall with herbs growing from wall-mounted mugs
Vertical living wall with herbs growing from wall-mounted mugs

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