It’s always inspiring to visit formally landscaped grounds or neatly planned and well-maintained botanical gardens.
But it’s also nice to have a little garden of your own, close at hand, that you can easily and quickly access for brief moments of meditation, relaxation, and reflection.
Such a garden exists at our house--and it’s right outside our backdoor!
Not grand in scale at all (maybe 12 feet wide by 20 feet long), our little meditation garden incorporates elements of plant diversity by using several kinds of plants reflecting differences in size, texture, and growth habits and forms.
Three distinctive kinds of trees are also located in our tranquility garden.
A winding pathway leads through the garden. The path is bordered with stones that define its outlines and directions. The walkway surface consists of pea gravel.
One segment of the pathway leads past a little buckeye tree and over to the water spigot attached to the house. Branching off from this path is another segment which goes past the bubbling water fountain (the focal point of the garden) and leads to a gate that accesses the storage area underneath the deck.
In the middle of the stone pathway at the entrance to the little garden, we’ve placed a concrete bench. This way, if you’re too tired to move even a few steps beyond the beginning, just sit down, relax, and enjoy the tranquil sounds of the splashing water and the soothing sight of the surrounding plants.
The bench is ideal for sitting and sipping the beverage of your choice. It’s also a great place to spend some time reading, strumming your guitar, or just collecting your thoughts before you zoom off into the activities of the day. Or, as the sun sets, it’s an equally fine place to unwind and let go of the whirlwind of events that consumed the hours of your day.
The remaining segment of the pebble-filled pathway leads around the side of the deck and up onto the deck surface. We made sure to have gentle meandering curves in the layout of the pathway. This adds to the informal, unhurried, restful nature of your relaxing journey along the trail and through the carefully asymmetrical configuration of plants in the simple garden.
Plants used in the garden are hosta, aloe vera, fern, liriope, caladiums, liriope, and pothos (in the hanging containers). All these plants exhibit differences in form and texture, and the leaves of the caladiums add shades of color even without the benefit of blooms.
The trees are river birch (the large one by the deck--it provides most of the garden’s shade), Japanese maple (a little one), and the buckeye tree near the house.
We hope this little “tour” of home landscaping illustrates that, even if you don’t have access to a grandiose formal garden, you can still create and enjoy your very own garden escape right in your own backyard. And while you’re out there......”have a happy time along the garden path and don’t forget to listen for the GardenVoice.....”