Gardening costs in the UK

Having a nice garden will come at a price and in the UK, people don’t mind paying it! It’s estimated that over the course of a gardener’s lifetime, they’ll spend £30,000 on tending to their garden. A staggering amount by anyone’s standards, but just how does the amount break down?

Here, ericaceous compost and garden supplies retailer Compost Direct discovers what this money is being spent on and how much different garden essentials will cost to make your garden the best that it can be.

When looking to see how this money had been spent, Gardening Express found that £10,000 was spent on plants and £9,000 on renewing a patio or decking in the garden. This decking cost is based on renewing the patio and decking six times over their lifetime.

The amount we spend in our gardens does seem to be slowing in the UK. In fact, a survey by Lloyds Bank Insurance found that households spent an average of £587 on gardening in a 12-month period between 2015 and 2016.

But how much do we spend throughout our entire life in the UK regarding our gardens? If we take the average UK lifespan at 80 years old and consider that most Brits won’t buy their first home until they’re 30, we can assume around 50 years of gardening. Based on the £587 average household spend, more recent data suggests that this spend has dropped to £29,350 — a £750 decrease on the figures from 2014.

Not everyone has the time to do out their gardens themselves and the alternative to this is hiring professionals. However, this isn’t without its own costs…

What does the average gardener charge to cut the grass?

The average gardener will charge you around £30 to cut your grass – although this can depend on the size of your lawn. Between March and September, this will usually be required fortnightly, racking up a total cost of £420 annually. Assuming a cost of a lawnmower is £100, this is just a fraction of the cost of professional lawn cutting service.

How much will it cost to have the perfect patio?

A patio can make for a great addition to your garden, as it will be a place where you can sit and host a BBQ for your friends and family. Laying a patio around 4m by 2m costs £475 on average. If you were to do the work yourself, you’d need around 18 900mm x 900mm paving slabs. You’ll also need to consider the cost of hardcore and bedding mortar. It is also a labour-intensive task so, while you may be able to save money, it may be more worthwhile to call in the professionals.

How much will it cost to have a standard shed?

A regular shed that has a standard and traditional design can cost you around £150. However, the cost of building a garden shed is £150 too, assuming the flat base is already in place. Although it may seem complex, building your own shed could save you some cash.

How much will it cost to have decking installed?

Installing decking can be a bit painful, so a lot of buyers leave it to the professionals. But what is the difference in price?

When you’re in the thought process of buying decking, make sure you keep the costs of raw materials and installation costs at the front of your mind. For budget timber, you can expect to pay around £14 per square meter. For a decking that’s around 14m2 — approximately the size you’ll need to house a dining table and chairs — you can expect to pay £196 just for the basic boards.

If you’re wanting premium hardwood boards, this can change entirely. The price rises to approximately £90 per square meter, bringing the total to £1,260 for the same 14m2 area. You’ll also have the cost of fittings on top of this, as well as a drill and saw if you don’t already have this.

Installing decking isn’t an easy job and therefore joiners in the UK charge between £150-200 per day for their work. This job usually takes two days — perhaps longer if you have a more complex design. In total, installing basic decking will likely cost around £596, while you can expect to pay £1,660 for premium hardwood decking.


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