Now that Valentine’s Day has passed and February is half over, you may want to start focusing attention on your landscaping plans for the rapidly-approaching 2016 season. Just about any designer will tell you that your outdoor space should be an extension if your interior living space. But that’s easier said than done. If you don’t already have a patio, deck or feature that delineates a specific functional area (think pool/ shed/ raised planting garden), it can be difficult to carve out romantic areas that make you want to stop and enjoy the intimate atmosphere a beautiful landscape can provide. Here are 3 easy ways to bring more romance to your garden design:
- Keep lighting indirect and in unexpected places. Nothing ruins the mood more than having a beam of light shining directly in your eyes. Use lighting to accent walls, highlight textures of fencing and graze across sculptures. Never underestimate the power of shadows in a garden.
- Even in large spaces, find niches or carve out places that feel enclosed. Instead of building a stone patio in the middle of the lawn, add a buffer hedge around it or a small ornamental tree to anchor the corner of the patio. Think about the “floor”, “walls” and “overhead” plane that make up your outdoor patio room. This is a tip from landscape design 101. If you haven’t signed up yet- join my class at the New York Botanical Garden this spring or summer
- Subtle transitions in materials or plant palettes go a long way in creating soft visual effects in the landscape. Bold contrasting colors and patterns may make great content for an editorial photo shoot, but the reality of day to day living calls for design that can stand the test of time. Use color blocking to group like colors together. A neutral background in the garden allows for focal points to be added and edited over time.