Formal Garden Style
If pruned hedges and orderliness get you excited, then formal landscape design is just for you. Formal gardens are classically timeless. Their elegance and symmetry have spanned the ages of European splendour to the modest backyards of today. Simplicity and clean lines grant this design style everlasting popularity. Unlike Coastal gardens, Formal landscape design has strict rules. If you follow them closely, the result will be simple with high impact.
Balance & Symmetry
Have you ever walked into a park or garden and noticed everything is perfectly balanced and symmetrical? The garden beds are divided proportionally, each tree offsets the other and the entire space is split right down the middle. A true formal garden has strong, clean lines of geometry. These are created through rectangular and square spaces, usually structured garden beds or lawn area. A straight path divides the garden in half drawing your eye to a focal point. The lines are never curved or circular, they are straight and balanced, creating that classic formal design.
Simple Plant Palette
Less is more. Everything about formal garden design is simple including the plants. The selection is minimal, creating more impact. Pruned hedges with dense green foliage, formed topiary, accent trees and 1 or 2 types of flowering plants for a pop of colour. The plants are planted in an orderly, formal fashion and the same species is repeated rather then mixed. Rows and rows of the same hedge, bordered with a deep strappy green grass. The colours are the same, but the texture provides interest.
Classic plant types:
HEDGES Lilly Pilly Viburnum Buxus Rosemary Westringia
FLOWERING PLANTS Anenome japonica Lavender Hydrangea Salvia Roses
TREES Blossom trees Pencil Pine Birch Olive Robina
Formal landscape design is filled with accent points. All the lines are designed to pull you in and take you on a special journey through the garden. The accent points can be at the end of path, such as a bench seat, or they can be nestled in a boxed garden bed, like an urn. Others are more grand and will be positioned at the nexus. These are usually larger objects, such as a pond or water feature. They are generally French provincial in style and subtly blend into the garden with their natural finish.