That odd area, between garages

A unique consideration for urban gardeners is the odd, narrow space between detached garages when you live close to your neighbor. I’ve been trying to collect images of how people creatively grapple with these unique spaces. Usually there’s a chain link, or other type of fence, separating the space you see above.

For many people they become the junk drawer of the yard – collections of tires, tarps & tools end up here. Is there name for these spaces? Garage voids? Junk plots? Spare spots? Dead zones? Detached alleys? Rat castles?

I don’t happen to have this particular problem. I have my own problems.

My friend Steve’s well-groomed solution.
This was my solution at my last house. I had raised-bed gardens.
A door to nowhere.
Joe & Scott’s excellent solution – a mirror.
An orchard!
A spot for Spot to poo.
An artistic & colorful nook.
Filled in with flowers.

A rockin’ pond.

A fountain feature.
Patio & grill combo.
A tight-fitting water feature!

This started as a sandbox and later became a
pond, fountain & container plantings.

A raised-bed water feature that takes up the whole space.
A close-up of the photo just above.

One of those Target store tents.
Close up of the tent above.
Inside the tent above — a perfect comfortable
shady place to hide from your kids.

I have a long-time garden blog, a popular garden on America's largest garden tour, and have co-written a book on garden design titled, "Buffalo-Style Gardens: Create a Quirky, One-of-a-Kind Private Garden with Eye-Catching Designs" When I'm not doing all that, I am an advertising designer always out looking to design things to promote your business. Look me up at #jcharlier.

0 comments on “That odd area, between garages

  1. Those are some great ideas.


  2. the “artistic & colorful nook” is my favorite idea.


  3. Gardener on Sherlock,Some greater than others. Not sure I, myself, would put a pool between two garages, but jumping in from the garage roofs might be fun.Delphine,Joyeux anniversaire!


  4. A fun series, Jim. Some of these I recognize from Buffa10.


  5. Interesting photos…I can honestly say I've never seen a area like (open space between two garages) that in my neck of the woods.


  6. Digging Pam,I have other “urban garden design issues” to cover — hellstrips, telephone poles, garbage can areas, etc. All in good time.DangerGarden,These are tricky spots for most because they're so narrow, have little light and are generally bleak and filled with weeds & storage of things that might better have been thrown out.


  7. That's actually a fair amount of real estate with which to work. I love the door to nowhere & the mirror. Both imaginative solutions that completely disguise the problem.


  8. What a collection of wonderful ideas!! Much better than an odd space between garages.


  9. Great ideas! The pictures are gorgeous. I especially love the door to nowhere.


  10. At our last house we had a really narrow space and got an OK from the neighbors to put in a 3-bin compost system using old wood palettes. Not gorgeous but useful and was out of the way. We both used it and it produced a lot of compost.


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