What makes a good garden?

A good home landscape includes main plants with two or three contrasting shapes. A landscape without strong, contrasting forms becomes as confusing as a melody without rhythm.

What makes a good garden?

A good home landscape includes main plants with two or three contrasting shapes. A landscape without strong, contrasting forms becomes as confusing as a melody without rhythm. The shape and shape of plants and other garden objects serve to divide space, close areas and provide architectural interest. Four days ago I always thought that the best gardens are the ones that make people feel happy and comfortable.

Sure, big gardens look good, but they also have to feel good. The gardens I admire most are relaxing, easy to walk around and not too difficult to maintain. Roads and structures should be easy to navigate, while selected plants should provide interest and perform a function without being stalkers or cousins. As a landscape architect, I address these issues of comfort and utility every day.

Here are 15 practical tips that have helped me create pleasant and livable gardens for myself and my clients. Make sure your paths are wide enough for a comfortable ride. Nobody likes to crawl into tight spaces, indoors or outdoors. Main roads must be wide enough so that at least two people can walk side by side, no less than 5 feet.

For secondary routes where people travel a single row, the width must be at least 3 feet. Keep in mind that the higher the plantations or structures that flank your walkway, the wider the path should be. High limits make any space appear more restricted. Exterior steps and ladders must ascend smoothly; otherwise, they may seem overwhelming.

Steps with an elevation of 6 inches or less are the most comfortable. The travel (or depth) of each step plus twice the climb (or height) must be equal to 26 inches. Therefore, steps with an elevation of 6 inches would require a travel of 14 inches. If your garden stairs include more than 10 steps, consider landing after every fourth or fifth step to facilitate progress.

The landings must be at least as deep as the steps wide. A generous landing is an absolute necessity when a staircase changes direction. Patios and terraces are perfect spaces for outdoor entertaining. Plan enough space to eat and socialize.

Consider how many guests you're likely to host regularly and then plan at least 4 square feet of space per person. Outdoor dining means outdoor furniture, so try to leave a 3-foot wide perimeter of open space around any group of furniture to allow for comfortable circulation. Make sure any pavement provides a secure base. Avoid slippery surfaces or loose pavers that wobble.

Paving materials, such as polished granite or smooth outdoor tiles, may not offer sufficient traction in rainy and winter climates. Gravel roads are OK, just use unsifted gravel. Unsieved gravel contains aggregates of various sizes, which are firmly compacted and provide a solid base. Sifted gravel is made up of aggregates of similar size, which do not compact well and remain loose underfoot.

Leave enough free space under arches, pergolas and pergolas. I consider 7 feet to be the minimum and generally add at least another 18 inches if I know there will be plants growing on the structure. This may sound loud, but outdoor structures tend to appear smaller than if they were indoors. In addition, prevention is better than cure and avoid bumping into a climbing rose or wisteria.

Posts for arches and pergolas should be placed at least a few centimeters outside the paths that cross them to leave adequate space for the elbows. Give your plants room to grow. If you must have a dense and complete landscape right away, plant with the intention of relocating or removing some plants as they mature. You can also plant fast-growing, short-lived “filler” plants to temporarily increase the volume of your plantings.

Some of my favorite fillers are delphiniums (Delphinium spp. And resumes. Just keep track of which are the prolific self-seeders, such as the tall verbena, to prevent fillers from taking hold. Place plants more than 30 to 36 inches tall at least 2 to 3 feet away from the edges of the walkway and patio; otherwise, these spaces may seem too cramped and cluttered.

While doing so, try to keep thorny plants like roses (Rosa spp. If you want to plant a rose in an arch or a pergola on a walkway, consider fragrant, thornless old garden roses, such as the 'Reine des Violettes' (Zones 5—, 'Mme. Germain (zones 3—, or “Drouhin zéphirine”) (zones 5—. While flowers are a very attractive attribute, many plants offer more than just flowers.

Look beyond flowers and use foliage, fruit, and bark for color, shape, and texture year-round. Spring and summer may be the time for flowers, but autumn is the turn of the rotating leaves of oak leaf hydrangeas (Hydrangea quercifolia and cvs. In the same way, winter opens the curtain on the stems of red twig dogwoods (Cornus stolonifera and cvs). By choosing plants with multiple ornamental resources, you'll expand the seasonal appeal of your garden.

If you're setting up or digging up your garden (or you just need something to add to your to-do list), consider placing electrical ducts and irrigation pipes 18 inches below the ground along paths and near the edges of the bed, even if you don't have current lighting or watering plans. In a few years, you'll be glad you did. Wiring and plumbing are easy to install later if the pipes are already there, and you won't have to interrupt established plantations or break the pavement. Few things in gardening are as annoying or uncomfortable as driving a pick or digging trenches in a buried pipe or cable.

Locate all underground pipes and services if you plan to change slopes or dig trenches more than 18 inches deep in your garden. Most municipalities or local utility companies offer services to find and signal underground lines, usually for a price no higher than a nominal fee. Sign up today and save up to 44%. Knowing your hardiness zone can help you choose the best plants.

In a nutshell, it describes the coldest place where a plant can grow. The higher the zone number, the warmer the climate. So, if a plant is resistant to zone 4 and you cultivate in zone 5, that plant will survive in your garden. However, if you're in zone 3, it's too cold to grow that particular plant.

A garden must respond well to the landscape and adjacent buildings. Some gardens are very introspective, with little attempt to benefit from the views or characteristics of the environment, and are designed without taking into account the impact of road noise, orientation, local climate and any other external factors. Make sure your garden design doesn't fall into this trap. Here are 20 tips to help you keep your garden in good condition and producing well.

As the terms imply, harmony or unity is when parts of the garden work together as a whole. We've all seen gardens that look like an attack on sight. This happens when there are too many disparate elements. .

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Madelyn Cintora
Madelyn Cintora

General explorer. Award-winning social media enthusiast. Freelance pop culture evangelist. Wannabe travel geek. General communicator.

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