Why do we love gardens?

Back in July I wrote a piece looking at why gardens are special places and how different elements appeal to each of us when it comes to garden design, along with what we look for in a garden.

Since then, my travels have taken me far and wide visiting gardens and nurseries (both retail and wholesale) around the world.  During this time I have continued to ponder this question: why do we take the time to garden and shape nature (which already does a pretty good job by itself) into a vision or vista of how we personally think it should appear?

As we know, there are many types of garden styles that all display different characteristics.  These characteristics obviously appealed to the person responsible for designing the garden theme or for whom the garden was designed – themes like Cottage, Formal, Japanese style, Tropical, Parterre and Rock / Succulent Gardens to name a few.

Bonsai scroll

Each of these has been created or designed not only to fulfil a certain function or fit with a country of origin but, looking closer, regardless of the form, they are all really a demonstration of a designer’s vision.

Just take a walk around your own neighbourhood to see the different interpretations of what people find appealing and how they see their surroundings in their mind’s eye, as this is what their garden demonstrates.

A welcoming store front

simple containers

boxwoods in container

I am not sure where Pink Flamingos or Garden Gnomes come into play but have to think this is the element of whimsy or fun in the mind of the garden designer. And, by the way, we are all “garden designers”, whether our patch of ground be a few acres, a small home site or even a balcony or windowsill with some containers.

windowsill gardens

So, after much thought and deliberation, I have come to this conclusion: it is our innate motivation to decorate that captures us. And, even if you are not a gardener, this innate motivation makes you enjoy being in the lush tropical surroundings of a resort, admire the manicured surroundings of a golf course or appreciate the natural forms that a landscape vista offers. Think about it – we take the time to decorate our own image with jewellery, clothes, hairstyles or, in some instances, tattoos and piercings, so I think this is a big part of why we think of gardens as being special.

wall paintings

I am sure many of you may have differing opinions and we would love to hear them but, after thinking about this subject for some time, this certainly seemed a plausible reason to me as to why we think of gardens as special places and how we relate differently to them.

Well it works for me – so until next time “Garden on Good People!”


Editor’s note:  You can catch more of Phillip’s gardening thoughts and advice on Your Easy Garden You Tube channel.

One Response to Why do we love gardens?

  1. Mary pinfold October 2, 2014 at 6:39 am #

    Beautiful places&gardens

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