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Art in Nature:
Landscape Design to Reflect
Your Artistic Side
By Alexandra Frerking
Art. What defines it? When you think about art, it may be museums filled an idea or two of where you want to begin. Even if you have no idea what you
with works by people who have been dead for longer than most of us have been want, but you know you want something, there is help for you. These artists
alive. Or perhaps, it is that black and white photograph that is hanging up on will listen to you and try to figure out what it is that you are looking for. Be-
your living room wall. Whichever is closer to the truth, the first thought con- yond what you want, they can tell you what you need, which plants will work
jured is usually one of something confined within a structure of some sort. best in your garden. For example, you may really like a certain type of tropical
Let us for a moment break free of those structural confines and move outside. plant that doesn’t do well with our climate. Rather than plant the poor thing
Not too far, mind you, only to your surrounding yard. What do you see? A and have it die a cold death in October, they can steer you in a direction that is
white picket fence or perhaps a lawn gnome or two. Really, who doesn’t love close to what you want, but more feasible. I’m sure tropical plants everywhere
a good lawn gnome? Outside of these, there is nature. It is everywhere, sur- will breathe a sigh of relief.
rounds everything and is the paint for your blank canvas. If you realize that your The plantings that are used are probably the most important part of having
canvas is rather lackluster, maybe it’s time for a change. Rather than investing a successful landscape. Lately, the use of native plants is becoming a more
in a whole new home, you can take what you already have and change it into popular trend. They require less maintenance as they are already accustomed to
your own outside masterpiece. Given the not so stable state of the economy, the environment on the island. They are also less likely to be carrying a disease
sprucing up your current home is probably the safer way to go. or insects foreign to our area. In keeping with low maintenance, groundcovers
You’ve probably been to a park or two that has such beautiful landscape such as pachysandra can be helpful. They can also help fill out a space.
that it actually invokes a feeling of inner peace. Why should that kind of peace As important as the type of plant is the placement of them. It is important
be limited to a weekend excursion? You can have that feeling in your very not only to the aesthetic feel of the garden, but also to the survival of the plant.
own backyard. Now don’t get me wrong, running outside with a pair of hedge Some plants thrive in the shade, where others need more sunlight in order to
clippers to create your own life size giraffe out of one of your bushes may not survive. You may have picked a gorgeous plant that is tiny now, but in five
be the best way to achieve this. Chances are you’ll just end up with a mess of years will grow into a monster and take over the space that it is in. A designer
branches and a stunted pony that used to be a holly tree. There are people who will typically plot everything out for you, taking into account the ever evolv-
can help you. There is a whole industry that devotes itself to the beautification ing state of your garden, and harmonize it so you are not stuck with a bunch of
of people’s properties. They are the artists known as landscape designers. starving, scrawny plants in two years.
So now, where to start? If you are an HGTV watcher, you may already have Don’t think for a minute that these details limit you. There are so many
Improper Northshoerian April 20034 34 4/2/2009 10:27:35 AM
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