Good Living at Home Articles

How Cool Art & Architecture in the Garden



by Dawn Bluemel Oldfield

While flowers and lush foliage add beauty and texture to the landscape, part of the magic you feel in a garden comes from the statues, benches, bird feeders, wind chimes, trellises and sculptures artistically placed throughout the property.  Art and architecture can create an environment that is calming and tranquil, a place of beauty and peace.

Even in the heat of summer, North Texas gardens are still kicking. Although it is pretty darn warm in July and August, your garden can still feel cool and inviting, especially with a water garden or fountain. Water features can transform the entire feel of an outdoor space, creating a soothing, cooling effect. Water brings a refreshing respite from the hot summer sun, serving as a place for friends and family to gather.  Fountains, ponds and waterfalls invoke a sense of coolness, serenity and beauty.

Candy Hudson, Broker/Owner of Century 21 Hudson Realtors, shares, “Art and sculpture in the garden are ways of extending your lifestyle outside and can have a big impact on the enjoy-ability and ‘chill factor’ of your home.  Water features will add a feeling of coolness during our hot summers and are also a good white noise if you have traffic or construction near your property.  A well-lit piece will bring life and drama to the garden at night.  I particularly like using sculptural, back-lit glass in the garden.  When adding art and architecture to the landscape, keep in mind your outdoor art should compliment and extend your indoor décor.”

Greenhouses can be beautiful and useful structures to a gardener.  They not only add an architectural element to the landscape, but also they serve practical purposes by wintering over tropical outdoor plants and providing valuable propagation space for the avid gardeners.  Greenhouses also extend the growing season, making it possible to grow certain plants like fruits, vegetables and flowers year-round.   Design can be simple and utilitarian or very elaborate and attractive. Tim Hill, owner of Claytonhill Greenhouse Company, designs custom greenhouses and conservatories as active, not passive, structures so that the building goes beyond being merely beautiful.  He strives to create architecture that leads to happiness. Tim and his talented team are dedicated to building the highest quality custom greenhouses and conservatories around and can build your dream greenhouse to any specifications. (www.claytonhill.com)

Whether you have a large lot or a small yard, you always have room to add art and architectural components to your garden.  A small grouping of birdhouses is charming and provides shelter for a variety of birds.  An armillary sphere or sundial can be a focal point.  Terracotta, concrete or metal plaques add interest to a blank wall.  Copper or bronze garden stakes add sparkle to the landscape.  Even an attractive watering can placed in just the right spot can be ornamental.  Garden art should reflect your style and bring your personality to your garden.  Choose items that are meaningful to you, and you will enjoy them year-round.

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