Landscaping your garden is very similar to the painting of a picture. Your art teacher has undoubtedly told you that a good painting should have a point of focus, and the rest of the painting merely enhances beautifully the main focus, or to create a perfect setting for it. So when you landscape your garden you must think in the way of what the entire focus of the painting is, and how you see it when it will become whole.
From this exercise we should be able to see into part of the workings of landscape gardening.
Firstly let’s start with the lawn. A good expanse of clear lawn area is always nice to look at. It is peaceful. It gives the feel of openness to smaller areas as well. So we might reason and state that it is good to have open lawn areas. If you fill this lawn area with a lot of trees, with small flower plots spread around, the normal look will be jerky and busy. It can be somewhat likened to a dressed up person. The lawns lose all identity if treated in this way. A sole tree or a little group can be a good placement on the lawn. Try not to center the trees or group. Let them fade somewhat into the background. Make a pretty side area with them. In selecting trees you should bear in mind a few items. You shouldn’t select an overwhelming type of tree; the tree should have an even shape, with good features in bark, leaves, flowers or fruit. Though the poplar is fast to grow, it loses its foliage early and so will remain, naked and stark, before the autumn is through. However, there are areas where a row or two of Lombardy poplars can be very useful. But you will most likely concur that a single poplar is not. The catalpa is very beautiful on its own. Its foliage is wide, its flowers pretty, the seed kernels which attach to the tree until long into the winter, give a bit of picturesqueness. The bright fruit of the ash, the glorious leaves of the sugar maple, the blooms of the tulip tree, the bark of the white birch, and the foliage of the copper beech can all be given consideration.
Position can be a consideration in choosing a tree. Say the lower area of the lawn is a bit low and wet, then that area is perfect for a willow. Do not place trees in a group which look awkward. A tall-looking poplar won’t go well with a good quite round small tulip tree. A juniper, so tidy and dainty, would look strange next to a broad chestnut. You must have symmetry and usefulness in mind.
You should never think of planting a collection of evergreens near to a dwelling, or in the front yard. The picture would look very grim indeed. Dwellings that are enclosed are overborne by these trees and are not only grim to reside in, but very unhealthy. The first requirement inside a dwelling is sun-light and lots of it.