PRO Gardening Guide for Beginners – There is great joy in designing your own garden layout — both in terms of resting or entertaining in the garden and in terms of a job well done. The time and effort you invest in designing and implementing a design that is uniquely yours will increase the enjoyment you receive from your garden for years to come.
How do you begin creating an entirely unique garden space? Here are ten straightforward steps to guide you through the process.
1. Determine WHY you desire a garden.
How are you going to utilize it? Who else will take pleasure in the garden? Bear in mind that you may not be the only occupant, so solicit advice from all family members on the intended usage of your outside area.
2. Do a little dreaming.
Now that you’ve determined why you want a garden and how you intend to utilize it, let your imagination to run wild with all the things that may be included in your unique area. A little daydreaming can reveal the characteristics that will impart your own stamp on the garden.
Also determine if you want a formal or a casual garden. Formal gardens are highly organized, separated by a strong central axis and cross axes. Informal gardens have bold, flowing curves and a more natural appearance.
3. Create a list of “must-have” items.
Which components are absolutely necessary? Prioritizing your requirements guarantees that your final strategy does not overlook anything critical. Do you require the use of a retaining wall? What about a privacy fence? Is there a route to the garage? Additional parking space? Do youngsters require a play area? What about animals?
Take a walk around your property and write a list of everything that is absolutely necessary. Your final design should strike a balance between desired elements and “must haves” in order to produce a comfortable and efficient environment.
4. Evaluate what you currently own.
To reach where you’re going, it’s beneficial to know where you’re beginning from. Is your room spacious or compact? Is the location level or sloping? What type of climate do we have? Which soil type do you have? How much water is available and where does it come from? What are the prevalent viewpoints?
5. Create a budget estimate.
Once you’ve determined what you want and need, it’s important to evaluate your budget. This monetary amount will have an effect on the items included in the final garden design — trees, plants, hardscape materials, and architectural elements such as arbors, fountains, ponds, and benches.
Bear in mind that your “budget” is made up of two components: money and TIME. Is the garden need to be completed by a specific date or may it be created over time? (Speed is expensive!) Additionally, how much time are you prepared to devote for garden maintenance? Are you able to commit many hours each week or are you fortunate enough to afford a caretaker?
While developing and refining your strategy, you may need to strike a balance between time and monetary expenditures. Be adaptable. If you are unable to spend more money, you may need to spend more time, and vice versa.
6. Identify the focal areas of your garden.
Every garden should have an eye-catching feature that makes you stop for a moment. When you pick a focal point for your garden, you are indicating the direction in which you want people to gaze when they arrive. Did you include a waterfall or fountain on your list of “wants”? A hideaway in the woods? Is it an apple tree in bloom? If this is the case, you are well on your way to deciding on a focal point – or points – for your garden.
7. Sketch out a preliminary design.
Take all of the information you’ve acquired and combine it into a viable design that strikes a balance between “wants” and “must haves.” Your objective is to create a place that is both practical and aesthetically pleasing.
Purchase a pad of graph paper with 8 or 10 squares per inch and set the size of each square to one foot. (In other words, each inch on the paper corresponds to around eight or ten feet on your land.) Create a simple map of your property with the lines of your property and your house drawn to scale.
Additionally, tracing paper, markers, a tape measure, a ruler, a pencil, and a decent eraser will be required. Trace your basic scaled map onto the tracing paper. Then, as you draw the various parts of your garden, refer to your list of “must haves” and “wants.” Arrange focus points, activity spaces (“rooms”), and routes in their approximate locations. Utilize as many sheets of tracing paper as required to arrive at a pattern that is pleasing to you and accomplishes the aim specified in Step 1.
8. Select your plants and hardscape elements.
Your choice of colors and materials will define the personality of your landscape, providing intrigue, movement, and aesthetic appeal. Do you prefer a palette of harmonious hues or a palette with stark contrasts? Tones with a warm hue or tones with a cold tone? Vibrant colours or subdued hues? By using a variety of colors, materials, and textures, you can create a distinct feeling of space in your landscape.
Plants make up a sizable portion of your garden. Along with plants, hardscape elements such as wood arbors, brick borders, gravel walkways, bronze statues, and wrought-iron seats offer diversity and texture.
Consider the best material for each of the hardscape pieces as you evaluate your preliminary layout. Bear in mind that each part must complement and match the overall. For instance, a terrace made of the same material as the house unites, but railroad ties around a formal garden cause conflict.
9. Construct a scale sketch.
Thus far, you’ve generated a basic map of your property’s boundaries and your home, as well as an overlay sheet illustrating focus areas, “rooms,” and routes. Additionally, you have a list of trees, shrubs, and plants appropriate for each region of your garden. Now you must produce a scale design indicating EXACTLY where each feature will be installed. The pathways, arbors, and trellises, as well as the trees, bushes, and flowers, will all be laid out according to this layout.
It is critical that you have sufficient knowledge to assist you in creating the garden that you just imagined on paper in reality. As long as your scale design or blueprint is large enough to fulfill your objective, you will succeed.
10. Carry out your plan.
Prior to beginning real construction of the garden, examine all applicable municipal building laws and regulations to ensure compliance. Decks, patios, and retaining walls may require approval from the city administration. After obtaining the necessary permissions, you may begin planning the garden’s layout.
Using your scale drawing as a template, place all structures, pathways, and plants using a tape measure. Take precise measurements to ensure that each aspect of your design fits within its allotted area.
If the prospect of creating a garden space is overwhelming, do not despair. Simply follow these procedures sequentially and allow a place to emerge that feels appropriate to you. You CAN accomplish this. After all, a successful garden is simply another room in your home that you have already designed effectively!