After a day of designing new landscapes for our clients and visiting gardens as they are being installed or that were created last year, I often come home feeling a bit like the shoemaker whose kids have no shoes.
With two young boys at home, much of our yard is designated a play area: as it should be. But that doesn't mean I haven’t carved out some space to experiment with new materials as well as plants. At the foot of our deck I have a modest garden in which I use to experiment with various hardscape materials, shapes and of course plants.
If you are in the same situation, more inclined to have a yard for play than gardens, a small garden space tucked in the landscape is an attractive alternative to one large garden. Smaller gardens provide a manageable way to keep your garden interest thriving. They also allow you to experiment with plants you may want to plant en masse when the yard transitions from playfield to expanded garden spaces.
One lesson from my garden is curved lines add beautiful visual interest even in a modest space. I also find the inclusion of large, natural elements, such as this stepping stone set in crushed gravel, a beautiful transition from the curved deck lines to the lawn.