Gardening is a very personal thing, with those wanting to create an outside space subject to their own desires and wishes for the final result. Whilst many landscape designers make their living out of building ready-made gardens for clients, developing your own unique style and setting is vital for any gardener who wants to continually love their garden. Meanwhile, you must also understand that a garden is a constantly evolving environment, with changes in plants, needs, and outlook influencing all horticultural spaces over the years. But what are the key things to remember when first setting out to plan your perfect space?
How Will You Use Your Garden?
A vital requirement when planning any garden is to understand how it is to be used and what you wish to get out of it. There is no point planning and building an absolutely stunning space if it actually makes it difficult for you to use it how you wish. Do you have children that are going to need a play area? If so, ensure there is enough lawn space or a barked area rather than filling a garden with flower beds which will need taking out as children grow. Are you gardener or a complete novice? If you are a gardening enthusiast then let your mind go wild with planting schemes. However, if you are a relative newcomer to the hobby, or simply won’t have the time to tend your beautiful outside space, take care to not create an environment which is going to need a lot of work.
Perhaps you are a socialite and love throwing parties. In this case, incorporate a patio, barbecue area, or drinks deck into your plans. Meanwhile, if you prefer to hide away in the garden for solitude, think about creating a number of secretive areas which can be used to quietly read a book or simply pass the time.
Plan the Planting
Whilst it may seem obvious to think about plants when planning a garden, it is important to think of the concept you are creating rather than just the individual specimens you want to include. It is very easy to go to a garden centre and fill the trolley with everything that you see and like. However, will these plants work well in conjunction with each other? Will they thrive in the site you want to put them? Will they all bloom at the same time leaving most of the year as a blank garden canvas?
Think very carefully about the feel that you want your garden to have. A modern and chic planting scheme could include architecturally strong plants such as topiary and phormiums, whilst also enjoying vivid coloured blooms of bright red, orange, purple and even white to balance the palette. For those who want a serene and rustic garden, choose soft plant shades, delicate foliage such as ferns, and small whimsical flowers rather than large, bold statements.
A Garden’s Future
Whilst you obviously want a garden to look beautiful from day one, you must also take into account how a space will mature over the years. Take care to keep to planting instructions in respect of spacing, otherwise you will find yourself having to move plants every few years. If you are planting trees, think about planting partial shade loving specimens at its base from the outset rather than having to change schemes later. A good method is to use annual plants to fill out spaces over the first few years whilst other plants mature, allowing a garden to grow as naturally as possible without having to constantly shift individual specimens.
With these pointers in mind you can create a stunning garden, no matter how you intend to use it. And whilst you should use these concepts for ideas, do not be afraid to try new things because, after all, your garden is a great achievement and a personal reflection of you.