Herb Garden Designs – Brief History

People long ago do not care about their intent or design when it comes to gardening, especially about herb garden designs. What they care most is about the usefulness of that herb, whether as dye, tea, seasoning or medicine. They do not care about some classification of plants as long as it will grow and can be used then a garden will be called a useful garden.

Our habit now of classifying plants into ornamental or useful herbs is just new. During the medieval period in Europe, all plants including herbs of course were believed to be of medicinal value. During the Renaissance, medicine, gardening and botany began to depart but of course did not really one hundred percent differ for many centuries.

Herb garden designs before like the Renaissance and medieval period greatly influence our herb gardeners today. Even though we know some tips about herb garden designs from our dooryard gardeners today, there are some common things that we get before that are still useful now. Also, we have some idea and knowledge about some designs of garden that is being used of royal places and medieval monasteries before.

During the middle ages, there is a visual representation of a formal yet simple garden that can be found on the plan of St. Gall. It is considered a small healing garden that is located near the doctor’s house and infirmary. It consists of a rectangular and large kitchen garden with 18 herbs in pots and beds of vegetables and a square garden that is smaller with medicinal herbs of 16 beds. This one, of some planned herb garden designs, has never been built.

During the 15th-century, enclosed gardens are being practiced as one of herb garden designs. Most of these gardens are depicted in ornamentation in Piero de Crescenzi’s famous written study of agriculture and horticulture. The designs are mostly simple grid patterns, which are made of small squares and some are made up of rectangular beds. The formation of gaps between the bed helps in the easy access to plots. These designs are not only usual on medieval gardens but of monastic gardens as well. This practice is still widely used even today. With this type of pattern, it would be easy to cultivate and harvest our home herbs. This also helps in rotating short-lived crops of salad herbs. This pattern is very functional and gives the neat and pleasing herb garden look.

In addition, not all gardens during the medieval period are utilitarian. Albertus Magnus suggested some ways when laying out herbs in your garden during the 13th century. He suggested putting sweet-smelling herbs like sage and basil surrounding the garden’s center.

The medieval type pattern which is a narrow and rectangular bed were favored by the growing gardens of the Renaissance and is created as teaching gardens by faculties of medicine in universities. Another type of pattern which is based on scientific principles was raised in the Renaissance just like the middle Ages, the Renaissance side with all sorts of enclosures. This practice persisted in the 17th century and even to this day. You will notice that most kitchen gardens are most likely enclosed for practical reasons.

Mixing vegetables, herbs, fruits and flowers in a single garden were common practice by farmers and householders in the 18th and 19th centuries. These are of medieval character just like 16th and 17th centuries.

Later half of the 20th century, gardeners are now more interested in the ornamental quality of herb gardens. Varieties of plants sprang out due to this trend. This trend gives us the questions on what herb gardens should be. There would be a lot of mixtures, from perennials, ornamental annuals and mixed borders that would include a larger number of herbs. Even with this trend, the important thing is to keep growing our herbs and create our own mark in this long tradition.

Introduction to Herb Garden Designs

Designing your very own herb garden does not have to be a difficult task. When one thinks of herb garden designs he or she may think of sketch pads to draw out a plan and blueprints; but, this does not have to be the case, although if you choose you can opt for this method.

Designing an herb garden can be lots of fun and you can customize it to your particular needs. Although a lot of planning is not required there is some planning that will obviously need to be accomplished. Just like with anything else, what you put into a thing is what you will get out of it. So, a little patience and thought will go a long way with designing your garden.

In this article we will discuss several different types of herb garden designs. When conceptualizing your garden you want to make sure that you include elements that have meaning to you, things you like or have some sort of connection or attraction to. Personalization is the key to making it your own and you can spend as much or as little time on your design as you like.

In this articles we will discuss a few garden designs that may give you some helpful ideas and added assistance to help you achieve your very own personalized design.

Butterfly Garden Design

If you love butterflies and want to attract them to your garden then you want to design your garden with this theme so that you can attract them. Butterflies love flowers and are naturally attracted to them for the nectar that the flowers produce. So, to attract butterflies to your butterfly garden you will want to plant different flowers throughout your theme such as azalea, butterfly weed, marigold, lilac, butterfly bush, nettles, dogbane, thistles and milkweed.

In a butterfly garden you may also want to include a water source for your butterflies like a fountain or some nice bowls for them to indulge in. Also, it would be great to have rocks for your butterflies to rest on and a nice bench or rocking chair for you to sit and enjoy your garden.

Zen Garden Design

A zen garden would be a great garden to design for those who love meditating. The monks used and cultivated a zen garden for this purpose. Zen gardens should bring oneness and harmony to the individual that is using it. The flowers that you choose should be suitable for your climate. Rocks are a very essential element for a zen garden as it represents energy and time and adds depth to your garden. Once your zen garden is completed and you have made it your own, this is a place where you will always wan to escape to.

Cottage Garden Design

A cottage garden can be cultivated around just about anything. This type of garden can bring beauty, serenity, comfort and romance to ones mind. This garden is not limited to a one particular space but have partitions of its beauty in many areas of ones landscape. A cottage garden is very unorthodox and requires more planning and maintenance than the aforementioned garden designs that we have discussed so thus far.

Designing your very own garden can be an exciting and truly fulfilling experience that can last a lifetime for both the experienced or novice gardener. So, go ahead and take a plunge at designing that garden that you never imagined you could. Happy gardening!

Money Saving Tips For Garden Designing

Garden designing, often called landscape designing, is of course a big undertaking, and can consume a great deal of time and energy. Professional Garden designers can be very expensive consequently you need to do some serious planning before you go out and hire a professional Garden Designer. Here are some garden designing tips to save you both time and money.

First and foremost you must have a clear idea or vision of the kind of garden you truly wish to have. Here is list of the most popular:

English Gardens promote a style that accentuates harmony between the architecture of the house with the garden. This is often accomplished by using the placement of flowers and plants and borders to accentuate the rhythm of the structure of the house.

Asian Gardens are usually found in smaller backyards to promote peace, health as well as beauty. They often employ evergreens, rocks, rock formations and water features in just the right places to create a feng shui effect.

Woodland Gardens are beautiful and scenic well suited to a house that has a wooded backyard.

Formal Gardens have a style consisting of many perfectly geometrical shapes with straight lines. Everything is orderly and planned, this means the garden design will not tolerate random placement of plants.

Informal Gardens are usually the charming, quaint style you see in Cozy Cottages. In this style Garden Beds have rounded or curved boundaries instead of perfectly straight lines. Unlike the formal garden, the plants are often randomly placed to bump up the charm factor.

Mixture of Formal with the Informal Gardens is the style that often has lovely brick walkways that emanate formality but lead to a circular or curved garden spot which is softer a feature often seen in an informal garden. This arrangement of formal and informal bring to mind the English Garden style but without formal borders.

And my favorite…

Vegetable Gardens where you plant what you love to eat and share with others. This garden type with a bit of imagination and planning can also be built with many of the above styles in mind.

The Style of Your House:

While you plan out your dream garden there’s another very important thing to consider, and that is the style of your home. If you have very formal architecture the charming informal garden may not be properly suited the style of your home. This is just as true if you have a cottage style house it is important to realize that a formal garden may look completely out of place.

Your Lifestyle:

Also take a good and truthful look at your own lifestyle. Do you enjoy spending your spare time caring for numerous beds of plants, trees and flowers which entail seasonal cultivating and pruning? If you love this please plant them.

On the other hand if you prefer spending your free time traveling, going to the park or beach then choose a garden design that gives you what you need or love but make sure that it is relatively suited for easy care.

The Vision of Your Finished Design:

Once you have made the above choices it’s time to diligently think about your finished design. So take a discerning look at your existing landscape and make a list of how you truly want use this piece of land. It is now time to decide what kind of plants you love and want to include. And what features are important to you. In other words, would a barbeque or swimming pool be appropriate? Would you like an area to entertain friends and family? A children’s area for playing? A pond with koi fish and lily pads?

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