Installing a pathway is the perfect way to invite guests in to explore throughout your beloved garden.
Up the garden path
A stroll down the garden path can be a wonderful experience, an arms-wide-open entrance or a meandering wander with a little mystery around each corner. Where does it go? What will I see? The feeling of strolling a beautiful garden path is refreshingly good for the soul, no matter how brief.
An entrance path can make you feel instantly welcome whereas one through the back garden can take you down memory lane.
Creating an aesthetic yet functional garden path needn’t be hard or expensive. With a little creativity and recycling, a few well-placed rocks and plants or getting back to basics with earthy organic materials you can create a truly beautiful work of art in your garden.
A path, besides being functional, should invite the guest in. The choice of plants is the number-one drawcard. Is it open and formal or full and lush? Precise and tidy or rambling, filled with vibrant colour and life. Flanked with textures and colour, a path can be equally functional and appealing as it invites you to venture further into its comforting surroundings.
However, before placing a single plant, you must construct the pathway itself. What are your guests going to be walking on? Pavers, brick, stone or mulch or a combination of several? I love an organic path, one that feels as though it’s always been there. The choices are easy to create something so natural. A simple mulch or gravel path is at one with nature, soft underfoot and melting into its surroundings.
By using some old wall blocks or recycled bricks, you can create a path that draws memories from a different era, one that was perhaps also more organic. Contrasting with the surrounding colours of the foliage, the complementary reds and earthy colours will be pleasing on the eye.
A feature pot or piece of art at the end of the path will draw the eye – and the footsteps – down towards it. A bird bath, pot or statue, garden bench or water feature, the choice is yours but aesthetically essential, particularly on a path that is long and straight.
The pastime of gardening is an art in itself, creating beautiful spaces with the right plants and design. With limitless options for construction and plantings, your garden is like a blank canvas just waiting to be turned into your very own masterpiece.
This article was first published in the spring 2021 issue of SALIFE Gardens & Outdoor Living magazine.
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