The word French is always associated with beauty and romance and Paris is in fact known as the capital of Love. The French tend to go out a lot, enjoy time with friends, socialise, drink, love, enjoy and make the most of life on a day to day basis. The French homes are tastefully done and they look really impressive with a well-maintained garden area.
French landscape can be created in a formal or an informal way, but generally, we associate it with a formal way as symmetry and order are the heart of any French landscape design. The garden area is arranged into a series of usable spaces by clipped boxwood hedges, neatly planted garden beds and planters, and intricately clipped topiary shrubs.
The French style of designing is such that it always leaves room for romantic touches. The French believe that gardens are meant to highlight the house and since they are viewed from a distance they take immense care in designing one. The French gardens are known for their paved ways in stone, decorative elements and for their cool colour palette. Let us see how to develop and design a French style home garden to give your home that beautiful edge.
- A formal design needs a lot of maintenance, so if you are ready to invest some of your time in your garden, you can go with it. Hedging is a must with these gardens. These hedges need regular trimming. If something is out of place in formal gardens, it becomes very obvious and thus regular maintenance is required.
- French gardens are known for their great use of stone in paving, edgings and also having some decorative focal point in the garden. Statues, urns and planters, and water features are all elements of French garden design. This does not mean that you need to incorporate all elements. Restrain yourself and use just one at the end of the gravel path as the focal point of the entire garden area.
Adding glazed pottery in the shape of olive oil jars, espaliered fruit trees, and potted citrus reflects the agricultural history of France in your designing.
- French gardens look vibrant and classy with lots of flowers neatly grown in shades of whites, blues and purples. The cool colour palette added through flowers gives an inviting feel and soothing charm to the place. If you are using window boxes, paint them in bright shades and plant lavender in it. Lavenders sync really well with the French theme. For walls, you can make use of climbing plants like Boston ivy, climbing roses, honeysuckle etc. They make the walls look elegant and add a dash of informal romantic look.
- The garden is a place to relax with friends and family and thus you need to include some sitting areas and dining spots. The key is to keep the furniture low profile and simple, but comfortable. Sitting there relaxing with your loved ones will instigate the feel of soaking in the French countryside.
- Symmetry and order are of paramount importance in a French theme. So, make sure that pathways and plant beds emphasise on symmetry and perspective. The flower garden can have both familiar and rare species, but again whatever is planted needs to be in perfect order and symmetry. You just can’t go planting whatever you want, wherever you want. You should have a proper plan in place to plant perennials and annuals keeping the aesthetics in mind.
- Adding a small herb corner is always welcome. In a classic French garden, the connection with the food we eat is celebrated.
Artichokes, fennel or dill can be grown in the herb corner, which is not only decorative but also delicious.
- The French styled garden defines that certain activities have to take place in certain areas only and then these areas or rooms provide graceful and interesting transitions. So, you will have little herb space, flower space, sitting corner, dining space etc. and then all these spaces will be beautifully interwoven together.
The French lay a huge emphasis on privacy, so the French garden should always have tall clipped hedges, rustic gates etc. to keep you away from piercing eyes. If you are designing a French garden, the theme should be well edited but not extraneous or overdone with details. All said and done, if you feel that adding a certain feature alleviates the look and feel of the place then go ahead and incorporate it even if it does not fall into the realms of the theme because that is what is known as the personal touch. After all, it is these personal touches that make the space interesting and different.