The aspect of a garden relates to how the sun moves the shade around your garden and it affects how every plant or tree grows in your space. Here in the UK, it is preferred to have a south facing garden as this is where the sun spends most of its time warming the soil and allowing a large range of plants to grow well. However, it will also affect decisions such as where you place your seating or socialising spaces outside. You may want to enjoy the morning sun in one part of your garden and the evening sun in another. You may also need to consider removing/adding trees or structures to control areas of shade.
To work out your aspect use a compass:
- North facing gardens get the least light and can be damp.
- South facing gardens get the most light.
- East facing gardens get the morning light.
- West facing gardens get afternoon and evening light.
Sunlight is the engine that powers plant growth, a process called photosynthesis. Without sunlight plants will die. There are plants that grow and thrive best in full sun but there are also plants that do not do so well in full sun and there are certainly a lot of plants that love being in shade.
Right Plant Right Place is a concept that when used well within your garden you will have success in growing your plants. Plants are selected on how well they grow in certain conditions, this includes sunlight requirements but also considers soil type, rainfall etc. So for every plant you cannot grow there are 10 that can be grown in your garden!