Garden or landscape forms an essential part of our surroundings. Just the sight of a beautiful and well maintained garden is enough to refresh and enliven the dead spirits. In effect, if you wish to create your own natural haven, it is important to pay attention towards the principles of good garden design. Though garden landscaping is not exactly a science, it does require careful implementation of design principles and elements. The garden space is a three dimensional area, which needs to be understood and laid out intricately, with the various props and trappings. In the following lines, we have provided ideas for garden landscaping.
Principles of Good Garden Design
The basic principles of landscaping a garden are broadly divided into three categories, namely
Order/ Balance/ Proportion - This refers to the basic structure of the garden. Symmetry, colors and size, all contribute to maintain order and balance in the garden. This can be obtained through repetition of plants or colors.
Harmony/ Unity - This is achieved when all the components of the garden work as a whole. It can be achieved through use of limited color palette, repetition of plants, colors or structures and even by defining a clear focal point. This is best accomplished in theme gardens such as, all-white gardens or cottage gardens.
Flow, Transition or Rhythm - This principle basically deals withmovement and direction of the spectator’s eye. As a result, there should be gradual changes in height, color, etc, to prevent a sudden jerk to the perception.
These above-three categories further specify the elements which need to be applied to the design of the garden. To know about the elements, read on.
- Line - Line defines movement and direction in a garden design. Gentle, slow curves and horizontal lines should be followed, as they appear restful. On the other hand, jagged diagonals or vertical lines create excitement and tension.
- Form - Form refers to the shapes of the plants. These shapes divide and define the space in the garden. The placement of the plants should be done in accordance with their form, so that they produce dynamic spaces and pleasing silhouettes.
- Texture - Texture is basically the visiblequality of a plant’s leaves, twigs or foliage. It can be segregated in categories such as coarse, medium or fine. Rough textures produce an informal mood and are visually dominant. Smooth and fine textures produce a formal, elegant and mellow mood, which is visually passive.
- Scent - Scent is the fragrance of the flowers in the garden. It is a vital element of garden design, as it adds an extra dimension to your garden. Specific colors correspond to emotional responses; produce specific mood and sense of time.
- Color - Color is one of the most important elements of garden design. They contribute to the sense of depth in a garden, as they define spatial relationships. Therefore, warm colors such as, red, yellow, orange, stand out and attract the eye, while cool colors such as blues, violets and some greens, blend well with the landscape.
- Repetition - Also defined as duplication, repetition enhances the order in the garden design. This can be followed with the elements such as line, form, texture, scent and color. However, excess is cautioned, as it makes the surroundings look monotonous and disorderly.
- Variety - Variety is the spice of any garden. It creates tension in the perception and holds the viewer’s attention. It should not be overdone, as then it might ruin the balance and unity in the garden.