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Landscaping design principles for the perfect garden bed

Landscaping design principles for the perfect garden bed

Gardens are usually considered to be very visual and artistic. Any great landscaper should understand the basic rules of how to create garden beds. This way they can know how to either follow these rules or break them intelligently in order to come up with a great design. 

Types of garden beds

There are two basic types of garden beds: borders and islands. A border normally has an anchor as its backdrop. This makes borders much easier to design as the backdrop will be used to define the size and shape of the bed. Examples of backdrops are hedges, fences, or even a house. Because of this, border garden beds can only be viewed from one side. When creating borders, it is important to think about proportion. Therefore, narrow beds should also be long, while short beds can be wider. In borders, the plants should be arranged properly. The tall plants should always be placed at the back, with mid-sized plants in the middle and shorter plants at the front. It is always better to place the plants in groupings for a more natural effect. 

Island beds do not have any anchor as their backdrop, and they can therefore be viewed from various sides. Some of them may have a central anchor, such as a tree, statuary, or a mailbox. However, the anchor does not have to be in the middle of the island. The shape of the island could be rectangular, round, square or amorphous. It is important to achieve proportion when creating islands. For island beds, taller plants should be placed in the middle or around the anchor, while shorter plants are found around the edge of the island.

Styles used in garden beds

There are two basic styles that are used when designing a garden bed: formal beds and informal beds. Formal beds tend to use geometrical shapes in their layout and design. They may use long, straight lines, or they can be distinctively circular, rectangular or triangular. The color combination in formal beds is very precise. The layout and plant spacing is also very specific. This style is found in the garden beds of many institutions and companies. 

Informal garden beds usually use free-flowing forms and curves. They are very relaxed in the use of color and plant spacing. A lot of clients prefer this type of style in their homes as it is less rigid. 

Ease of maintenance 

A garden bed will only look beautiful for a longer period of time if it is properly maintained. The landscaper should therefore design the bed with this in mind. For border beds, the narrower it is, the easier it is to maintain. If the bed is more than four feet deep, the landscaper should consider including a sort of access so that the client can weed and maintain the garden. Island beds, on the other hand, can be maintained from different angles. In this case, one will only have to include an access if the island bed is bigger than six to eight feet.

Garden beds have become very common in landscaping and all exterior designers should understand how to design one. If a landscaper conforms to these easy-to-follow guidelines, they will soon be able to create beautiful beds that will have the desired impact on clients and onlookers.

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