What are the principles to consider in the design of a garden?
Balance, scale and proportion, contrast, rhythm, and dominance. With these principles in mind the planner uses space, lines, forms, colors, patterns, and textures to create orderly beauty.What are the essential things to keep in mind in planning the planting of a property?
What you want most from your garden. List the items: play space for the children; an area in which to entertain such as a terrace or patio; space for family recreation; special gardens such as a rock or rose garden. One should also keep in mind the need for shade, for screening out objectionable views, movement of equipment over the area, and especially the need of beauty and interest in plants during every season of the year. The resulting plan should satisfy most of your needs as you now visualize them.We have just bought a large suburban house, but the grounds have not been cared for properly and are overgrown. What is the best way to plan a renovation so we will not make mistakes?
See a landscape architect. Tell him what you would like to have in the way of flowering trees, flower gardens, recreation area, etc. and ask his advice. He will submit a plan and give approximate costs of providing some or all of the things you want.We only have a small garden and do not want to hire a landscape architect, but we need help. What should we do?
Make a plan on graph paper of what you have, with trees, house, drive, and shrubs located. Possibly take a few pictures. Then go to a nurseryman who offers planning service. Some of the larger nurseries have skilled landscape people on their payroll and they can give you much expert advice on the spot from your plan and pictures for a reasonable fee. Also, they might plant the garden for you when you order plants from them.Is it necessary to make a plan of a garden?
For any but the very simplest of gardens a plan will be found to be a great help in carrying out your intentions. Changes and rearrangements are more easily made on paper than in the garden itself. A plan is also most useful in estimating quantities; if the planting is not to be done all at once, it is essential.Why should a garden be "balanced"?
Balance, whether symmetrical or irregular, gives a garden picture a feeling of stability and restfulness. A garden that lacks it will be less pleasing, although it may not be immediately apparent what the trouble is, particularly in a naturalistic composition.Our new house was erected on an overgrown lot. We spent so much money on the house we will have to do the landscaping ourselves. How do we go about it?
Make a list of all the shrubs and trees you have. Then on a piece of graph paper plot in one color those that you want to keep for one reason or another. Also plot what you would like to have in another color - trees for shade, flowers, or screening purposes; shrubs for beauty or screening; a flower garden; utility and game area, etc. Incorporate these with the plants you want to keep.What is meant by the term "focal point"?
A focal point is a point of highest interest in the development of the design, such as a garden pool, or a group of particularly striking plants. It serves as a center around which the design can be built.In a square garden, where should the focal point be?
In the center, usually. In a square design the important lines lead to or from the center.What is a vista?
A vista is a narrow view framed between masses of foliage. It tends to concentrate the observer's attention, rather than allowing it to spread over a wide panorama.Must a garden be level?
A geometrical garden need not be level, but the slope should be away from the principal point from which the garden is seen, rather than from side to side. A naturalistic garden should have, if possible, a natural grade, irregular rather than level or smoothly sloping.How do you decide on the size of a garden?
How large a garden can you take care of? Don't lay out more plantations than you can properly care for. A garden should be in scale with its surroundings, not too big for the house; nor so small as to seem insignificant. If the size of the property is limited, it is well to have the garden occupy the whole space instead of leaving a fringe of unusable space around it.What is the rule for good proportion in the size of a garden?
There is no hard-and-fast rule. Oblong areas are most effective when they are about one and a half times as long as they are wide; but the method of treating them and the surrounding foliage masses affect this considerably. Generally an oblong is better than a square; and an oval (on account of perspective) more effective than a circle.How can you accent a planting?
Plantings made up of all one kind of plant, or of a few similar varieties, are likely to be monotonous and uninteresting. By using an occasional plant of a different sort an accent is created that makes the planting more interesting.What is the difference between a formal and naturalistic garden?
Formal design uses straight lines and circular curves or arcs. Informal design uses long, free-flowing curves. Formality emphasizes lines; informality emphasizes space, a concept necessary today in low-maintenance landscaping.What is required in a formal garden?
A formal garden is essentially a composition in geometric lines - squares, oblongs, circles, or parts thereof. It need not be large, elaborate, or filled with architectural embellishment.Which is the better suited to a small place, a formal or an informal garden?
Topography controls the type of design. On flat ground in proximity to buildings the rectangular (formal) type of design is easier to adapt. On rough land greater informality is desirable, particularly on slopes and in wooded areas.What are the steps necessary to develop a small property?
Rough grading; staking out walks, drives, and garden area; installation of utilities (water, gas, sewage, etc.); preparation of planting areas; planting trees, shrubs, and perennials; making the lawn, are all of importance.Is there anything that can be done in advance of building on a lot that would improve the land or save time later on? The lot is 100 x 100 ft., with trees, bushes, weeds, etc.
Clear out undesirable wild growths and trees where they are too thick. Confer with the builder to avoid destroying attractive native shrub masses in locations near the property lines where they may be valuable as part of future shrub borders.We have a new home to landscape completely, and very little money to put into it. What do you advise concerning first plantings in our garden, to take away the bare, new look?
Shade trees come first. Then important screen and background plantings of shrubs, flowering trees, and evergreens. These are the framework of the landscape picture. Add details later.I have just built a new home, with a large front yard, in a country town. What would be best to set out or plant?
Shade trees are important. Plant a few in such a way that they will throw their shade where it is most needed. Shrub borders along the side property lines will help frame the picture. Avoid too much planting against the house.How would you go about designing a town-house garden area about 18 x 25 ft.? It is shady half the day.
In such a garden you will have to depend largely upon the pattern of the design and upon architectural accessories. The planting should be mostly specimen evergreen, perhaps dwarf evergreens, and spring bulbs. For the summer, a few annuals, either in pots or beds, will give color.Can you suggest economical landscaping for a small temporary home?
Maintain extreme simplicity. Use the minimum of planting next to the house and in the area facing the street. In the rear, if possible, have a compact vegetable garden bordered with annual and perennial flowers.What sort of garden would you plant in a plot 60 x 30 ft.?
An area of this sort is usually most effectively developed by having an open grass or gravel panel in the center, with flower borders along the sides backed by shrub borders, or hedges, and a strong terminal feature at the end. This last could be a lily pool or patio.I have read that a garden should not "compete with a view." Why? How is it prevented?
The intimate detail of a garden suffers by comparison with a wide view into the surrounding landscape. It is usually wiser to surround the garden with an enclosure to shut off outside views, but if these are worth-while, provisions should be made to take advantage of them from some point within the garden.My house is surrounded by trees, but there is a fine view now obscured by foliage. What should I do?
Do not hesitate to cut out trees or trim them to form a vista so the view can be seen from some vantage point in the house or on the terrace. Often this can be achieved by removing lower branches rather than whole trees.