Creating Outdoor Garden Rooms In Your Landscape


Outdoor garden rooms can have different meanings. To some, it brings to mind an area immediately outside of the house to be used similar to an interior space.

However, here I am going to talk about creating various spaces throughout your garden, with each one being it's own "place". There can be one or many, but each place should have its own purpose.



Outdoor garden rooms are typically enclosed as a room in your house would be. The walls of a garden room, however, can be such things as plants or walls. Plants have to be high enough to create that feeling of enclosure. Walls are great, but very expensive.

A room should be "found". In other words, they are similar to secret gardens in the sense that they are enclosed and sometimes even secluded. It might not be easy to enclose the area completely. However, even a lower enclosure where one might get only a partial view will work.

Please visit my page on Outdoor Living Rooms if you are interested in reading about "living rooms" right outside your house.



Types of Garden Rooms

Flower Garden Rooms

An outdoor garden room can be as simple as a private flower garden. It can have curvilinear flower beds along the edges or it can have formal pathways designed through garden plants. You might consider, a rose garden design, a knot garden, an herb garden, a perennial garden design, or any of these mixed together to create a kaleidoscope of interest. A beautiful bench placed in a comfortable spot will add a nice garden element and provide a place to sit down and enjoy the garden.


Quiet Garden Areas

Perhaps you just want a quiet secluded place to go. A simple lawn area which is private will provide this. Once again, it would be nice to include an attractive outdoor garden bench or chairs. Adirondack chairs look nice on the lawn, creating a casual feel. You might also consider adding an outdoor gazebo.


Garden Room & Water Feature

What better garden feature is there to draw you in than a water feature? A naturalistic pond with a fountain or a pond and waterfall are wonderful garden additions. Or just a lovely backyard fountain can be more than enjoyable!

You might even have a casual patio, such as one made of bluestone, up against the water so that you can sit close, enjoying the sound and beauty of the water.


Fragrant Gardens

How nice to be able to meander to a place in your landscape where you can enjoy fragrant plants. If designed correctly, you can almost have fragrance throughout all of the seasons. For example, plant Lilacs for spring fragrance and easy to grow roses for the summer. 

Enclosures

Outdoor garden rooms can be enclosed by walls. European gardens have many of these. The walls, however, are fairly tall so that the room is truly private. This is quite costly.

You can also use plants to create the same feel. Tall plantings will provide screening from the interior. The plants can either be trees or tall shrubs. For a formal look you might consider Arborvitae or a hedge. I have seen "tapestry" hedges in England. They plant a variety of plants for a formal hedge, and over time the plants intertwine, creating interesting textures of the various plants.

You can also plant tall evergreen shrubs, such as Rhododendron, Boxwood, Hollies or Cherry Laurel. Perennial flowers can be added to the interior or the exterior of the garden room for a layered look and for color.

Where To Locate Garden Rooms

The location of the rooms depends on the size and layout of your property. If it is small, you might consider using a rear corner. The garden "walls" can be squared off or can be curved.

Large properties afford more opportunities for room placements. You might have only one room to go to in distant area, or you can create a series of rooms, one leading to another. Perhaps there is one secret garden and a meandering path leads to another.

Creating outdoor garden rooms can be a lot of fun. Decide if you would like just a nice area to go to or if you want a particular type of garden in it. Either way, it's nice to be able to use all of your property and enjoy different areas.




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"Susan,  what a pleasure it was to work with you.  You made me feel like I was your only client - responding late at night and always so quickly!  Your design is amazing and we only hope we can do justice to it when we plant.  You have such fantastic ideas and you are so open to suggestions and changes.  Loved working with you - now if you could only come to Canada and plant it!!!"
Helen, Ontario-Canada 

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