Wednesday 23 October 2019

Diarmuid Gavin: How to make your garden look expensive on the cheap

Diarmuid Gavin at the Ploughing Championships in Carlow.
Diarmuid Gavin at the Ploughing Championships in Carlow.
Rachel Farrell

Rachel Farrell

One Dermot was enough to make it a hit TV show – and a second drove fans into overdrive.

Garden designer Diarmuid Gavin was a hit among viewers in the latest series of RTE’s Room to Improve, joining architect Dermot Bannon to redesign homes across the nation.

We caught up with Gavin at this year’s National Ploughing Championships in Co Carlow, where he shared his top tips on three key gardening topics as we move into autumn.

To make your garden look more expensive than it is, Diarmuid recommends that people “keep lawns mowed and use forest bark as borders”

“Have a few pots and tubs that are full of colour by the front door or terraces is always a good idea,” Diarmuid told

One plant that is a must for brightening up the garden this winter is a ground covered geranium, Gavin says.

“It will crawl all over the place and won’t leave any room for weeds,” he said.

“It will be full of colour all summer long and right into autumn.”

Read more: Diarmuid Gavin: From brick walls to green hedges, a boundary defines your garden

And how can green fingers grow an eco-friendly garden?

“Being sustainable and being environmentally aware is so important for gardeners. Often the garden is a last refuge for wildlife,” he said.

“Gardening in a more relaxed way, grow things like wildflowers. You’re going to be a little bit untidy, make your own compost, save water whenever you can.

“Grow things like nettles, which are fantastic food sources for all sorts of creatures, like caterpillars which will become butterflies.”

Read more: When Dermot met Diarmuid

Online Editors

Editors Choice

Also in Life