15 Whimsical Ideas for Your Gothic Garden

Sumptuous black flowers; awe-inspiring stone arches; elaborate wrought iron gates: these are all things that you’ll find in a Gothic-inspired garden. Read on for loads of ideas to help you create your own strange and beautiful hideaway.

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Black Blooms

Gothic gardens look best when they’re simply bursting with purple, black and burgundy-hued plants. 'Queen of the Night' tulips are a high-drama option for bringing your vision of a dark, beautiful garden to life.

See More Photos: 29 Black Flowers and Plants

Be Edgy

Look at a Gothic cathedral and you’ll see no shortage of decorative, ornamental elements. Your garden can echo this motif in the smallest of details, such as ornate, cast iron borders around garden beds and trees.

Soaring Structures

You can’t help but gaze upwards at the sinuous, soaring lines of this Gothic-inspired garden folly. Use a gazebo such as this one as a setting for garden furniture, the junction for multiple garden paths or the vehicle for vines to flourish, creating a shady spot.

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Enchanting Ruins

Ruins are at home in a Gothic garden, lending depth and mystery to your outdoor space. We love how this stone garden folly features the classic pointed arch shape common in Gothic architecture, along with other statuary. This piece is modeled after the style of Giovanni Battista Piranesi, an Italian artist.

See More Photos: 40 Gorgeous Garden Follies

Not-So-Itsy-Bitsy Spider

Who would imagine a gate so perfectly spooky even existed? Built in 1936, this one-of-a-kind spider web gate found at Hoveton Hall in Norfolk, Great Britain gives us all The Addams Family vibes. Get inspired by this web-like gate and add other creepy-crawly touches to your garden.

A Lofty Folly

Garden follies can be simple or ornate, but their main purpose is aesthetic, adding beauty and elegance to a garden. This two-story construction, located in the rose garden of New York’s Sonnenberg Historic State Park, recalls the soaring height of traditional Gothic structures.

Fairy Tale Spaces

This is where stories of intrigue and adventure begin: at the start of a long path that leads to who-knows-where. Invite mystery and excitement into your garden with whimsical touches such as this covered walkway drenched in dreamy climbing plants.

Striking Contrast

A study in opposites, the lovely 'Black Lace' Elderberry Sambucus Nigra features dark, frond-like leaves and contrasting flowers. What makes this plant even more perfect for your Gothic garden is its association with the Scandinavian goddess Freya, the goddess of, among other things, both love and death.

See More Photos: 29 Black Flowers and Plants

Open & Airy

The iconic Gothic arch shape can resurface in multiple ways throughout your garden, even in airy, structures such as this. The walls of this outdoor room are reminiscent of stained glass church windows and offer a space to stop and rest in this beautiful garden.

Quoth the Raven

Don’t be afraid to get a little creepy with the design of your Gothic-inspired space. Edgar Allen Poe would approve of this spooky garden gate wreath decked with real metal shackles and an inky black raven.

See More Photos: 15 Creep-Tastic Halloween Wreaths

Gothic Garden Arch

A Gothic arch set into a simple stone wall creates a perfect transition from one area of a garden to the next. You'll add a sense of history and grandeur with a stone element such as this structure from the Wortley House gardens in Gloucestershire. Photo from Gardenista.com.

Stone Guardians

There’s no need to install gargoyles on the eaves of your house (though you could if you were determined to go all-the-way-Gothic) but statuary, in general, is a great addition to a Gothic garden. Pick a figure that’s reminiscent of Gothic religious figures to keep watch over your plants.

Unexpected Wind Chimes

Add unexpected decor touches to your garden, such as antique keys hung by thread or twine from the lower branches of trees. Scour antique shops, thrift stores and online sources to find vintage-style keys for this low-effort, quirky project.

Wrought Iron Whimsy

There’s something about a gate this lovely and ornate that sends chills up your spine. Seemingly plucked from the pages of a Gothic romance novel, a wrought iron barrier such as this one greets guests to your garden while offering a tantalizing hint at the sights beyond.

Winter Blooms

Gothic gardens can celebrate elements of life and death, light and shadow, summer and winter. Hellebore, also known as Lenten Rose or Christmas Rose, shows its darkly beautiful blooms in winter, ensuring your garden is lovely year-round

See More Photos: Burgundy Plants and Flowers Are the New Black

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