Sheds for gardening and sheds as ‘she-sheds’

When I got my allotment I knew I’d struck lucky when I saw it had a large shed in it.  While it may have been made of old wood which looked a bit sad and grey, it was a great size, had a large panel of glass at the front (ideal for growing tender vegetables in the summer), a padlock, and it even came with a few old tools and some furniture for storing things in.

One of the first things I did that summer was to give the shed a new lease of life with a coat of duck egg blue paint – it worked wonders and really lifted the look of the whole allotment. I also gave the shed a really good clean, inherited some new tools, got a brand new padlock and cleaned the glass  Three years down the line I have no idea what I’d do without it – although sadly I failed to grow aubergines in the window – I blame the poor summer, rather than the shed.

There’s no question that a good, organised shed is a gardeners best friend.  It provides a fantastic space for storage, but also a sanctuary for shelter and a warming cup of tea when the rain pours down (at all times of the year in Scotland).  Personally, I think, the bigger the shed the better – and here’s a great list of recommendations for large wooden sheds from What Shed. This is a great site full of comprehensive reviews about different sheds for different purposes.  It’s fun to think which shed I would choose if I inherited an allotment without one – I personally think number 19….

no 19 8′ X 6′ Pent Shiplap Wooden Garden Sheds
8′ X 6′ Pent Shiplap Wooden Garden Shed, available from B&Q

Sheds aren’t just a gardeners best friend though, and there’s also been a lot of hype lately on the growing use of the ‘she-shed’ – sheds that women buy and build so that they have their own place in the garden – often to pursue their hobbies or just to relax. Traditionally, sheds were seen as a place for men to escape from domestic chores and tinker with power tools, but now women have cottoned on to the joy of having a space they can call their own.

Many she-sheds are also bought to accommodate self-employed female entrepreneurs who want to work alone but within touching distance of their home and family. This includes those who need an office or a workshop, studio or other creative space.

There’s no reason why one of these large storage sheds can’t be transformed into a space for relaxation, even for someone who isn’t interested in gardening. All you have to do is think a little creatively, invest in some good quality exterior paint, perhaps invest in some vintage pieces of furniture and a small oil heater and hey presto – your very own she-shed!

Billyoh 5000 Pent Range
Billyoh 5000 Pent Range, available from Garden Buildings Direct

Good luck, and don’t forget to send me your pictures and feedback!

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