We love garden porn as much as anyone
Many enjoyable hours have been spent drooling over gardens in Pinterest, which is a great tool for getting design inspiration and for keeping up with current garden trends.
However, there comes a point when all those beautiful and clever garden & landscape design ideas can just start to get confusing and sometimes, overwhelming. Are all those ideas going to fit together in a manner that look effortless and cohesive? And are they even the right thing for your garden and lifestyle?
Here’s some complimentary expert design advice in this blog to help get started with design thinking in a more personalised way.
1. Get Design Inspiration – Switch Off
Switch off the electronic devices, forget the internet for a while and look for design inspiration within the own property and neighbourhood. Study the details of your house and look at what is happening beyond the boundaries too.
Say you have a 60’s style home and want a subtropical or Palm Springs garden. Maybe those shiny black laser cut panels on Instagram aren’t quite right. Consider a black Frangipani breeze block wall instead, or a bold splash of red on walls or screens that echos the tones of the flamboyant flame tree next door. Add soft palm fronds to contrast against the Puka tree that encroaches on your patch from the native garden theme in the garden on the other boundary and you’re away! A garden style that adapts to work with the neighborhood context and responds to architectural cues from it's surroundings, will always feel right.
2. Learn some garden Latin
Garden designers just love their Latin, especially the term Genius loci. This old Latin term has been appropriated for contemporary use as the ‘spirit of place’. It’s that unique feeling or distinctive atmosphere that a location or garden has, be it good or bad.
If a part of your garden makes you feel instantly calm when entering it, then maybe don’t cut down the 50-year-old tree just to create a vegetable garden. Put the peas elsewhere and tuck a seating nook or retreat space below the leafy canopy instead. New gardens on the other hand, devoid of canopy plantings, can feel exposed and overly bright. Use a sun-drenched space to the best advantage. Add some over-sized white pots of tough, sun-loving plants, sun loungers and a cantilevered shade umbrella or louvered pergola and it will enhance this and created a holiday at home vibe.
Work with the Genius loci of the space have a unique and special garden.
3. Use it, don’t lose it
If you are building a garden on a small budget, then working with what you’ve got is key. It can also offer up great opportunities for one-of-a-kind design features, without the bespoke price tag.
How would that dreary, brown clinker brick wall from the 70’s look if it were bagged and painted white? Given a new lease of life, suddenly it becomes a stunning garden feature wall. Add a sculptural tree or plant group in the foreground and boom, instant wow factor and no budget blowout required. Use what already exists to the best advantage.