Article by Nazima Woozeer

A garden is a plot of land which is used to cultivate fruits, herbs, vegetables or flowers. A garden can be a quiet place, where people just sit, relax and enjoy the scenery, taking in the beautiful fragrances of flowers. It can be a site for parties, barbecues and meetings or even a place for children to play.The first step in garden design is to have a thorough look at the garden. The whole length and width can be measured. This is just to have an idea of how big it is. It does not need to be accurate. If it is a back garden, the view can be from the back door. A row of hedges from the doorway, can serve as a guide producing a ‘welcome’ effect. Sometimes, hedges can serve as a demarcation between gardens, lanes or roads. They help in defining space.Some gardens have trees at the centre or at the corners. These trees provide shade and have a cooling effect on a warm day. Garden chairs or other furniture can be put under the trees for relaxation. This depends on taste. Imagine taking a nap on a sunny afternoon under an apple tree in your garden! In some cases, a tree can have at the bottom, some colourful flowers surrounding it. This is a lovely sight to behold. Some gardens have gazebos. These serve as shelter. They include kiosks and pavilions. They are also good for barbecues. Some gardens have slides, swings and other things for children to play with. In such gardens, there is always plenty of space for the children to play. Not too many flowers are planted and part of the garden is cemented so the kids can run around and be free. In such cases, there are small beds of flowers far from where the kids play. Normally, flowers which have thorns are avoided because these can hurt the kids while playing.Some gardens are divided into compartments with lovely flowers. The flowers are usually in beds and have to be compatible. This means they should not serve as weeds to other flowers and the insects which are beneficial to them should not be pests to the other flowers close to them. Each compartment has a mix of its own flowers. The flowers could be sweet smelling or just planted for beauty. Some plants in pots are arranged at the edges of the garden. Sometimes, the pots are coloured and beautify the garden. The potted plants are mostly species of small trees or palms. These also beautify the garden. Some gardens have rocks and shells collected from different places arranged to beautify the garden.Hedges are used sometimes to make designs such as letters and shapes on the floor. Decorated with light at night probably when there is a garden party, these hedges look really nice.Garden design really depends on how creative an individual can be and taste. It also tells a lot about who you are.

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