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A Garden Isn't Just Flowers

As most people what they think of when they think of a garden, and you will probably get answers like "a lawn" or "flowers" or "trees."

Of course these are the main ingredients of any garden. But there's one ingredient that few people think of.

Landscaping.

So what is landscaping exactly?

Landscaping is the way of organizing and developing the different areas of your garden so that they work as a whole. It consists of more than just plants and grass.

For instance, rock is a great way to add variety to your garden. If you're looking to give you yard some something special to set it apart from the neighbor's, or if you want to add some depth and texture to your landscaping design, landscaping rock comes in many different forms, is inexpensive, and used sparingly, give a garden a warm, natural look.

Not only is there a good selection of colors, landscaping rock comes in different kinds of stone to choose among, from limestone to slate to granite. Different landscaping designs call for different types of landscaping rock, obviously, but given all the choices it is easy to get just the right rock.

Next time that you are out walking or hiking in the woods, keep an eye out for larger rocks and boulders. Look at how they naturally sit in the ground and you'll see what kind of a look the landscaping rock in your yard should have. This is the kind of detail that will set your yard off from the rest of your neighbors.

And don't forget concrete. The mental images that the word concrete invokes may not be of something you'd want in your yard but in fact, the landscaping industry has begun to incorporate concrete materials in their designs the past few years with surprising results. Now concrete's use is growing with the introduction of stained concrete finishes to include patios and driveways as well. You can make use of concrete for various parts of your yard.

Use it for concrete block designs for walkways and paths through a garden. This is better in larger yards but even if your yard is small it can accommodate concrete landscaping. It could be a small patio built from concrete blocks for you and your family to sit in the sun on. It could be a simple concrete planter or two for a small container garden. Or simply a concrete sundial in a flower bed.

Concrete landscaping can also keep your soil in place. If there is a part of your yard that on an incline then you can build a retaining wall expressly for this purpose. Concrete blocks come in many shapes and textures and you are sure to find a style you like.

If you live in an arid and dry climate, you can use it to make your landscaping very interesting. Desert landscaping is one of the more interesting challenges. Spend a little more planning time on your yard than you would normally for most other areas. You will need to work with a plan that includes only plants and trees that can survive with much less water. Nobody is going to plant something if it cannot sustain itself.

Overall the elements of garden design include landform, water features, fountains, garden ponds, garden planting, garden buildings, garden lighting, garden sculpture, garden ornament, garden furniture and hard landscape materials. These elements are used to make a wide range of garden types.

Using different materials and plants not usually seen in a garden or yard will turn your garden into something special you can be proud of.

Landscaping is an art and, like any other art form, it takes time, patience, and research to get your methods just right. But the results will be well worth it as you view your new garden. If you are new to landscaping, a simple search on the internet will give you many design ideas and techniques that you can start with today.

Submitted by:

Jon Kilminster

John Flintoff writes about the home. His website http://www.romanticlandscapes.com is a resource for those who want to get the most from their garden landscaping.




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