When it comes to securing your home against burglars, thieves and any unwanted visitors, your garden is the first line of defence. While there are many things you can do to improve the security of your garden (as detailed in this previous SafeZone blog post), there are a number of things you can do to make the garden itself a barrier to entry.
Plants & Plant Pots
One of the things that burglars look for in a house to break into is the speed and ease of getting in and out. So by placing obstacles in their way, like certain types of plants in particular places, you can make a burglar think twice about breaking in.
Some plants might even hurt unwanted visitors with spikes or stingers.
Use plants such as blackthorn, common holly or creeping juniper – plants that have prickly leaves, or thorny stems, or are generally abrasive – around boundaries and under windows to make it unappealing to try and get through or over.
When it comes to abrasive plants, however, make sure you consider your own use of your garden, especially if you have children or pets.
If you’re using pots rather than beds to plant your plants, then fill the bottoms with rocks and pebbles to make them as heavy and hard to lift as possible. Sometimes thieves use them to break glass, but if they’re unable to lift the pots in your garden, then they won’t be able to throw them. Doing this also provides drainage for your plant, and prevents it from tipping over.
Lighting up your garden not only makes it more pleasant to use in the evenings, but it could help deter burglars from choosing your home to break into.
Having lighting that stays on the whole night will be unlikely to deter burglars. It might make their activity more visible to witnesses, but only if they make enough noise to wake someone up.
Instead, when lighting your garden to deter burglars, consider security floodlights. Make sure you position your light in a place that you can see from the safety of your home – there’s no point lighting behind the shed, for instance, as you can’t monitor that area.
A motion-detecting light will surprise a criminal trying to get into your home, making it one of the best choices for security lighting. You should however also take into consideration your neighbours – make sure that your light is aimed squarely at the place you want to illuminate, and not onto neighbouring properties.
Having a gravel path or driveway will help you hear when someone is approaching the house. While it might not wake you up the middle of the night, it might help alert you if a burglar or unwanted visitor approaches during the day.
Deter a burglar by installing fencing or boundaries that are tall and hard to get past. Be careful not to exceed 2 metres however, or you’ll need planning permission.
If you’ve secured your shed effectively (see this previous post on shed security), then your would-be burglar isn’t going to be getting into it any time soon.
A common target for thieves, getting it right can save you hassle, time and money. A quick win that you can do to make your shed more secure is replacing the padlock for something more secure. You can see our range of shed padlocks here, with our most popular sellers being the Yale Y220 Weatherproof 51mm padlock and the ABUS Titalium 64TI/40 padlock. Whichever you choose, it’s important to go for a lock that’s weatherproof.
If you think your shed could be used to get over a fence or into your home, then consider a green (but spiky) roof for your shed. A simple sedum roof interplanted with a spiky plant such as aloe will make the shed roof unpleasant to the touch but pleasant to look at.
One of the most powerful ways to use your garden to deter burglars is through CCTV surveillance. If a thief spots a camera in your garden, they’re less likely to consider breaking in.
Installed high up and out of reach, CCTV kits can now be controlled via your smartphone, so even if your security lights and gravel fail to wake you up, or your burglar decides to strike during the day, you’ll be notified immediately.
This Yale All in One Camera also includes a security light and an alarm, killing several birds with one stone. An alternative to a traditional CCTV camera on the wall, this Ezviz battery camera can be fixed to a garden fence or on the home facing the garden, giving you more freedom to choose the positioning.
Not only does CCTV deter burglars, it means that in the case of a break in, it could help identify your offender.