Have a Whirlwind Romance With Country Style

Would you like to incorporate some elements of country style into your own garden? Get to know them here, with our tour of its most tantalizing elements — lush foliage, sweeping landscapes, light-catching plantings and more.

Excerpted from Garden Design
  • Flowering Garden Path

    What is Country Style?

    Country style got its start in the late 1800s, when designers who were also naturalists called attention to the organic beauty of softer, minimally restricted growth over large areas of outer property. Today, country style is associated with using combination of design techniques, plantings and elements to bring coherent shifts over areas of ample space. This style often starts with more formal approaches near the house which grow increasingly more natural and wild in further landscapes. Paths link these spaces, and lead visitors with focal points, viewing areas and resting places.

  • Contemporary Country Garden Uses Mixed Materials

    Country Contrast

    Here, large boulders stand out against the soft sweeps of planting beyond. Grasses provide movement and light in the deep planting beds, and wide boundary hedges screen views of neighboring properties. In country gardens paths of hard material, here, wooden decking, lead to the main property, with routes through the garden in more economical gravel.

  • Colorful Country Garden

    Luxuriant Planting

    Extensive borders provide the opportunity for dynamic planting, using color and texture in drifts or en masse.

  • Natural Stream Used to Create Garden Pond

    Large Pools and Streams

    Natural springs may provide the basis for ponds and streams, but man-made water features can just as easily offer reflective surfaces, wildlife habitats and new planting opportunities.

  • Garden Flows into Natural Landscape

    Views Into the Landscape

    The garden experience can be dramatically enriched by linking it to the landscape. Long, narrow views, which open up to a wide natural panorama beyond, produce spectacular effects.

  • Maintained Lawn with Trees

    Sweeping Lawns

    Lawns are used both as a functional surface and as a minimalist complement to more textured or colorful planting. Lawns and grass pathways should be as wide and open as possible, as the surface can wear with heavy use.

  • Bench and Hedge

    Hedging and Screens

    Hedges define space and control views. Yew produces a dark, dense backdrop that is perfect for colorful borders. Low box hedges are ideal for partitioning planting spaces, and mixed hedges work well on a larger scale.

  • Weathered Stone as Country Garden Feature

    Natural Materials

    Traditional country gardens often feature local stone that weathers to produce varied surface textures. Concrete and decking results in a more contemporary look.

  • Colorful Plantings Create Romantic Border

    Interpreting the Style

    Complex mixed border designs are traditional elements in country gardens, although recent designers draw on more limited planting palettes too. Both styles are able to capture movement and light in wildflowers and grasses, which can delight beyond just one season. Here, splashes of color illuminate a haze of planting and add vertical interest. Transparent veils of grasses and perennials create the romance.

  • Feathery Grasses Accent Sunny Patio

    Catching the Light

    These graceful borders, planted with a mix of golden feathery grasses and eye-catching red Sedum, encircle this sunny seating area with movement and light.

Excerpted from Garden Design

©Dorling Kindersley Limited 2009

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