The Simple Beauty of Specialty Garden Landscape Designs
The most beautiful outdoor areas typically incorporate many types of specialty garden landscape designs into the design plan for a diverse and natural appeal that is both inviting and enjoyable.
Each garden type brings a different element to your overall design, so it is important to understand the characteristics of each and to plan the locations of these gardens carefully.
Fragrant herbs, kitchen gardens, unique rocks and stones, tranquil water features, and colorful flowers that bloom throughout the year are all examples of some of the most popular types of specialty garden designs.
Classic Flower Gardens
Lush, vibrant plant life is part of most any outdoor living area. Many garden landscape designs highlight the beauty of fragrant flowers with carefully planned flower beds integrated into the landscape. The most attractive beds include a variety of flowers to keep your yard colorful and alive all year long.
Mix these blooms into your flower garden:
• Annuals are a great way to provide quick color that lasts all season. These flowers are planted at a specific time each year, depending on their ideal growing climate, and will die after the flowering season. Annual flowers are usually easy to care for and require little preparation. Select annuals for each season to keep your garden enjoyable all year.
• Biennial flowers are similar to annuals with their ease of maintenance and single season of blooms. Biennials like foxglove and hollyhock produce only leaves the first season of their short life and bloom the next season before dying away.
These flowers must be selected with extreme care and planning so the foliage, but lack of color, the first year doesn’t disrupt the landscape design. Many flower varieties that were traditionally biennials are now available as annuals with blooms the first season.
• Perennial flowers are the best way to keep color in your garden all year long. These plants are permanent additions to your landscape design and will come back with vibrant blooms each season. Choose a variety of perennial flowers for your garden, including some that bloom in spring, summer, and fall, but remember that these flowers require more planning and extra preparation compared to annual blooms.
Perennials typically require a great deal of sun and should be planted in a location that allows several hours of direct sunlight each day. Perennial gardens do best in dry areas of your yard that drain well. If these beds are placed in wet, damp locations, the bed should be raised to provide better drainage and prevent plant rot.
Flourishing Vegetable Gardens
Vegetable garden landscape designs were once limited to rural homes with sprawling acreage, but today’s trends in urban farming are encouraging individuals to adapt the classic vegetable garden to suit their space requirements – even if that means a container salad garden that fits nicely on an apartment balcony.
Planting a backyard (or front yard!) vegetable garden comes with a number of benefits. Growing your own fresh vegetables saves money and ensures a healthier diet. Vegetables also add unique textures to your landscape design. There are just as many ways to integrate this type of specialty garden into your outdoor space.
With a shift toward more sustainable living, organic vegetable gardens are extremely popular. Raised planting beds or containers are the best way to achieve this and can be a stunning addition to your landscaping.
Aromatic Herb Gardens
Herb garden landscape designs have been a useful part of gardens for centuries. Herbs and spices make attractive displays and are often quite aromatic, scenting the air of your outdoor space and creating an authentic landscape style.
Your herb garden can contain cooking herbs and spices for your kitchen, herbs with medicinal purposes like chamomile, or a combination of flavorful and fragrant herbs.
Herb gardens do not require a great deal of space and are ideal for town homes and residences with small yards, but there are a number of things to consider:
• Herbs typically need lots of direct sunlight, so plan this specialty garden in an area with little shade.
• Container gardens are perfect for herbs and can be placed on a porch, terrace, or even a window box to conserve space.
• Some herbs are more difficult to cultivate than others. Research the soil needs, amount of space required, and other characteristics of various herbs before making a final decision on the right plants for your garden.
• Herbs can be planted within flower beds with shrubbery and other plant life or can be in their own bed or containers.
• Begin herb garden landscape designs with a variety of species, but limit your selection to no more than a dozen different types until you gain experience. Thyme, dill, and parsley are great choices for beginners.
Tranquil Rock Gardens
Rock gardens are easy to maintain and add a unique and natural look to your outdoor living area. This garden landscape design is great for uneven portions of your yard, slopes, or other unshapely terrains.
Rock garden landscape designs generally feature weathered stones that complement the overall design of your outdoor space and include rocks in a variety of sizes, carefully arranged in an intriguing display. Plan your rock garden around the other components of your landscape, paying special attention to pathways.
Integrate planting areas for flowers and shrubs amid the rocks, placing soil in shady areas, direct sunlight, or both depending on your favorite garden plants. Select flowers and shrubs that lend a natural appearance to your outdoor design.
Water features are a wonderful addition to your rock garden design. Use them to create focal points and an air of relaxation.
There are several other types of specialty garden landscape designs that can add beauty and elegance to your outdoor living space.