Principles Of Garden Design
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Designing a garden on your own may look like a daunting task. Especially, if you have an endless list of ideas and wishes, you are most likely to end up in a mess. But, following some basic principles of garden design can actually leave you with a picture-perfect garden.

Basic Principles

Color, scale, form, line and texture are the 5 basic elements that you must keep in mind while designing a garden.

Form refers to the shape of a plant and the structure of its branching pattern. For instance, trees come in various shapes like columnar or globular and so does the structure of their branches which can range from stiffly upright to droopy.

Texture refers to how the visual surface of an object is perceived vis-à-vis the surface of adjacent objects. Leaf size if often used to draw conclusions about the perceived texture of plants. For instance, the texture of a bedding plant may be considered coarser in comparison to a nearby plant, due to differences in their leaf size.

Line refers to the fact that a gazer’s eye movement is influenced by the arrangement of plants and their borders, both on horizontal and vertical planes.

Scale refers to the size of one component relative to the objects around it.

Application Of Basic Principles

The application of the above principles can be used to achieve a sense of proportion, transition, unity, rhythm, balance and focalization in a garden design.

A 5 feet high stone wall might elegantly set off a large home, but would make a small home look even smaller. Application of scale principle here is important to bring a sense of proportion while placing landscape elements in a garden.

To achieve a sense of unity in a garden design use landscape plants that complement each other. Repetition of form, such as planting small trees to flank a driveway, promotes harmony.

Variation in texture can be used to bring transition without destroying the unity in design.

Patterned repetition of a motif, for instance, landscape plants planted in a row or a hedge (line) brings rhythm in a viewer’s eye movement.

To focalize the viewer’s gaze on a landscape element like statue you can surround it with color i.e. plant red or yellow flowers en masse.

Balance refers to the consistency in visual attraction and can be brought by consistency in all 5 basic principles.