Garden Design: Defining Your Space

Define your garden with landscaping that pulls all the elements together to create one unified, inviting space. We made over the yard below to do exactly that.
From: DK Books - Design Your Garden
Isolated Tree

Isolated Tree

Photo by: DK - Design Your Garden © 2011 Dorling Kindersley Limited

DK - Design Your Garden, 2011 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Each of the elements here are isolated, and they need to be brought together to create a more unified, interesting design.

The various landscaping elements in this large, open yard stand completely separate from each other, giving the impression that you’re in a huge landscape where space is no object. The house is surrounded by almost uninterrupted lawn, and the lot’s main features comprise a cherry tree, a driveway, and a fence, with a few small, skimpy beds planted around the building. 

The site has some appeal, but it’s hardly inviting. The isolated elements need to be brought together, given cohesion, and the house and garden must be linked. 

The massive lawn also needs better definition to make the front yard feel more restful and balanced, like a green carpet. Here's how this garden design could be improved and better defined:

Dense Planting Design Offers Myriad Creative Possibilities

Dense Planting Design Offers Myriad Creative Possibilities

Photo by: DK - Design Your Garden © 2011 Dorling Kindersley Limited

DK - Design Your Garden, 2011 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Enlarging the small beds into one sweeping border unifies the disparate elements. Swooping around the cherry tree, integrating it into the design, and is filled with a mix of shrubs, small trees, and perennials.

  • The pretty cherry tree should remain the dominant focal point, but adding garden borders links the tree with the house. 
  • The lawn is reshaped to form a dynamic swirl, and provides a stage set on which the tree performs as a stunning focal point.
  • Sweeping borders create a better balance between the house and garden
  • Enlarging the small beds into one sweeping border unifies the garden's disparate elements. It swoops around the cherry tree, integrating it into the garden design, and is filled with a mix of shrubs, small trees, and perennials. The planting focuses attention away from the driveway, which originally looked rather harsh, and the house and yard are now more balanced.
  • Dense planting softens the look of the drive and two-car garage.

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