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Green with Envy

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It’s true…the grass really is greener on the other side… A survey has found nearly half of all British homeowners are green with envy over their neighbour’s garden.

Researchers have found that 42 per cent of adults claim to peer longingly over the garden fence eager to emulate the immaculate lawns, blooming hangings baskets and posh garden furniture of next door. So much so that a quarter of Brits say there is fierce competition over the most impressive garden in the street and 8 per cent of green fingered adults said they would even sabotage a neighbour’s blooms.

The poll found 42 per cent like to keep tabs on the locals’ horticultural plans by regularly having a sneaky look over the fence. More than a third of those questioned by Roundup weed killer said they wished their garden looked as impressive as their neighbours. The biggest factor for jealousy was that other people on the street had bigger gardens, followed by a well-manicured lawn.

A spokesman for Roundup said: ‘’This research clearly shows that there is some competition going on in UK neighbourhoods.

‘’Gardens are different to other aspects of our homes in the sense that many people can have a sneaky look from their back window or over the fence.

‘’It’s healthy to have a bit of jealousy every now and then as it keeps everyone on their toes.

‘’Obviously nothing can be done about the size or location of a garden but virtually anyone can have a perfect lawn or blooming flowers.’’

The study also revealed that a bitter 16 per cent of adults said they wouldn’t give their neighbours the satisfaction of complimenting them on their garden. But nearly a third said they regularly approach their neighbours to ask them for tips and advice on how to tend to their lawn and shrubs. Although 35 per cent said they would never do this as it would go to their head.

The best place to turn to for advise was good old mum or dad, but 18 per cent prefer to pay for professional help from a gardener to ensure the perfect garden. The biggest grumble homeowners had about their own garden was that the lawn was too patchy, followed by too many weeds. One in ten grumbled that it was too small and that it was all concrete with no sprawling lawn. Other moans included dirty patios, overgrown plants and lack of bright colours.

Not only do Brits have a touch of the green eyed monsters but 43 per cent also get annoyed if next door have a messy garden. One in ten said an unkept garden reflects badly on the area and a third said it’s not nice to look at. The study also found that one in ten have got irritated with someone who lived close by because they copied what they have done.

A spokesman for Roundup said: ‘’It would seem people can’t win – neighbours get envious if your garden is too nice but then they also moan if it’s too scruffy.

‘’Keeping a garden and lawn well-kept undoubtedly improves the overall appearance of both a house and an area overall.

‘’And now is the time of year to really get started on tending to the garden.’’


1. They have a bigger garden

2. Their lawn is well–manicured

3. They own nicer garden furniture

4. Tidy borders

5. Blooming plants

6. Impressive hanging baskets

7. A clean patio

8. Decking

9. Conservatory

10. Their garden is smaller and more manageable

11. Plenty of shrubs

12. Posh shed

13. Extensive vegetable patch

14. Patio heater

15. Established trees

16. Gas barbeque

17. Green house

18. Kids playhouse

19. Pergola

20. They have a better washing-line

Gardens are different to other aspects of our homes in the sense that many people can have a sneaky look from their back window or over the fence.

A spokesman for Roundup

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