How to Create a New Garden Vista --- Instantly!

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The rounded bench back echos the rounded line of the wall. Design by Phase One Landscapes
One of the most valuable components of a landscape, whether large or small, is destination seating. Every garden should have a spot where you can sit and relax, dream and scheme! More importantly, a place to and look at the garden away from your main window or patio/deck view gives you a whole new vista. Gardens are composed of three-dimensional forms and, like a piece of sculpture, should be viewed from multiple points to be fully appreciated.

View from back of house to seating area. Design by JHChilvers
View from seating area to back of house. Design by JHChilvers

Two seating areas on opposite sides of a small space. Design by Phase One Landscapes
The same concept with a more rustic interpretation. Design by owner.
  Another reason to create a destination seating area is that it will pull you into the garden. There's nothing like actually walking through the space, instead of just viewing it as a static "picture," to get you interacting with nature again. A small seating area can be an oasis of quiet and calm, a place to regenerate.  Conversely, it may bring you closer to the action if you site it near a play structure or active lawn area.  Hey, there's no rule that says you can only have one!

Front yard pair of chairs perfect for watching the world go by. Design by owner.
Multi-season impact. Design by JHChilvers
Design by owner
And finally, a pair of chairs, a teak bench, a large boulder, etc. can also act as a focal point in the garden. Try and select a seat that is harmonious in color, materials, or character to the architecture of your home and the other furnishings in your landscape. Choose materials that are low maintenance or attractive to you in their rustic state. Also think about weight - you don't want something that will end up in the next county every time the wind blows.

Albuquerque Botanic Garden
Chair lift swing, Telluride, Colorado
Rustic flagstone bench in garden designed by Elenor Welshon
 Now sit back and enjoy!

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