Flower gardens are works of art that should draw visitors in, drawing their eyes into its design. A successful garden should draw onlookers in and be equally stunning from all perspectives.
Attaining this requires several important considerations. Start with reviewing these flower garden basics to create an inviting space throughout the seasons.
Identifying Your Site
Flower garden design is highly subjective. While some may prefer formal designs featuring straight beds with flowers planted in neat rows, others might enjoy having winding paths dotted with irregular clumps of blooms arranged randomly across their space.
Before beginning planting your garden, take a walk around the site to select an optimal location. Pay particular attention to lighting conditions – some flowers like irises and peonies need full sun while daisies and roses thrive under partial shade conditions.
Once you’ve located an ideal spot, remove any existing grass and weeds before making sure the soil is free of rocks and debris. Next, read your seed packet instructions or plant labels carefully so as to know exactly how deep to dig and where close together your planting should go. Lastly, stay aware of buried utility lines in the area as this could prove hazardous if disturbed.
Choosing the Blooms
Once you know which flowers you wish to grow, the planning process begins. Professional garden designers often include plants with staggered bloom times to provide year-round interest; this will also prevent your garden from looking overcrowded in summer and sparse in fall.
Make sure to consider your site conditions carefully when planning, too. For instance, if your soil contains clay particles, amending with well-rotted manure or compost could help ameliorate them before planting. A soil test can also provide invaluable information as far as what needs to be added so that when it’s time to dig in you know exactly what to expect.
If you want a garden with minimal upkeep, choose perennials such as zinnias, geraniums and pansies which return year after year; annuals add quick color that can easily be swapped out when they fade or die; fragrant roses, fragrant clematis or sweet peas can add an elegant touch.
Creating a Backdrop
Flower gardens add beauty and interest to outdoor living spaces, but it’s essential that they thrive where intended. Take time to research which varieties thrive where before starting any flower gardening projects in your outdoor living spaces.
Before selecting any site for your garden, take time to assess its sun conditions. For instance, if your flower garden will be situated on the south side of your house, observe how much direct and indirect light comes through throughout the day. Noting shade in the morning and sunlight in the afternoon works best for drought-resistant perennials like coreopsis and coneflower; while indirect lighting works great with shade-lovers such as hosta and heuchera.
When selecting plant placement, be mindful of your planting map. Think about planting taller plants at the back with shorter ones in front to create layers in your garden and more visually interesting effects. Remember, odd numbers — three or more — tend to look better to our eyes than even numbers of plants.
Flowers need sunlight in order to thrive, so find an area in your yard where there will be at least six hours of exposure each day. While certain flower varieties tolerate partial shade, most require full exposure.
As you design your flower garden, keep color, height, and texture all in mind. For instance, plants with fine foliage such as marigolds pair nicely with coarser canna lily leaves; similarly colored roses and blue iris belong in the same family due to similar bloom times.
Add hedges, fences and trellises into your flower garden design for softening the borders and framing each planting. Furthermore, rocks can define separate sections within your landscape, adding contrast and character.