Planet-friendly gardening is on the cards for 2023 as gardeners ditch peat, create alternative lawns and encourage wildlife onto their patch, using sustainable techniques to improve their soil and conserve water.
Take a look at some of the gardening trends predicted for 2023.
“As environmental concerns increase, particularly among young people, we’ll see more wildlife-friendly gardening using recycled products, organic fertilisers and peat-free or homemade compost in 2023,” predicts Chris Collins, head of organic horticulture at charity Garden Organic.
“I think more gardeners will plant a more wildlife-friendly garden to attract pollinating insects.
“Gardeners may also experiment with companion planting and rethinking their attitude to ‘weeds’, taking a more relaxed approach and acknowledging their important role as sources of pollen.”
Environment and climate change
“Climate change will see gardeners review the types of crops they grow to more closely align with the climate in their part of the country,” Collins suggests.
“Heat and drought-tolerant plants will be bought, water-saving and the use of water butts will increase and planting techniques will change to ensure plants can withstand weather fluctuations”.
Sarah Squire, chair of Squire’s Garden Centres, predicts: “Customers may be looking at investing in drought-tolerant, heat-loving plants that can weather the increase in temperatures we are experiencing and that can look after themselves.
New heights for houseplants
The trend in houseplant popularity will continue, with more exotics such as such as Cymbidium and Dendrobium orchids and scented-leaf varieties performing better in cooler homes, the RHS predicts.
“More gardeners will switch to producing their own compost,” predicts Collins.
“With the cost of living crisis, gardeners will be looking to save money and a compost heap recycling fruit and vegetable peelings, garden clippings and paper/cardboard waste will save money, reduce environmental damage from transporting bags of compost and produce an excellent soil improver.”
“Environmental concerns and tight purse strings are also likely to stop gardeners reaching for chemicals to tackle common garden pests, Collins predicts.
“Instead of buying expensive bug sprays there will be a move to using more barriers and traps, companion planting to deter bugs while at the same time allowing some natural predators to flourish as they provide food for important pollinators,” says Collins.
Squire adds: “I think people will want to make thrifty choices, looking for great value plants that are proven to do well”.
“The colour for 2023 is terracotta, as well as earthy tones like sage green, beige and cream. These evoke warmth, excitement and amusement,” says Mark Lane, BBC Gardeners’ World presenter, designer and Stannah gardening expert.
“There is also a real trend towards everything Greek with white-washed and stone walls, sculptures, archways and tall trees with pops of colour from agapanthus and cyclamen. Hand-crafted objects and furniture will be used to create the romantic beauty of Greece.”
There will be a large push towards gravel gardens, Lane reckons. Once established, they will require 80% less maintenance.
“With more of us taking note of water shortages, drought and heat-tolerant plants that grow happily in gravel gardens will be seen everywhere.
“The knack will be limiting colours and plants to create that calm oasis. 'Picking up on the Greek' vibe, blue will be seen as an accent colour, whether in soft furnishings, plants or outdoor paint.”
“New collections of seeds and plants will focus on small urban gardens as well as larger outdoor spaces. Soft pastel colours will be mixed with vibrant, bold colours – soft pinks, blue and mint green will alternate with vivid accents from bright orange to scarlet,” says Lane.
Restful and restorative places will be a key theme again for next year, with soothing colours and cosy textiles, says Lane. “On-trend natural colours will also blend into nature, blurring the two. This is all about that true connection with the natural world.”
“Boutique-style garden furniture will be seen with plush soft furnishings, but again in neutral colours. To get the look right just think what furniture you like for indoors and find similar pieces for outdoors,” he adds.
“Patterned outdoor tiles will be on trend, with symmetrical designs playing centre stage, adding a strong design element.”
Apps and social media are becoming even more important as gardeners share what’s happening on their patch, participate in courses and workshops digitally and are prompted into action to plan and plant using apps, the RHS notes.