Get To The (Focal) Point – Part 1

Thursday, 18 July 2013

One of the many tricks a garden designer has up their sleeve is the use of garden focal points. Focal points can:

  • create a journey around the garden, literally leading you down the garden path!
  • draw your eye to a certain part of the garden or up and on to the landscape beyond
  • divert your eye from something in the garden or nearby
  • add interest to borders or other areas of the garden
  • create a mood in the garden (i.e. if you are trying to create a Renaissance garden then introducing some classical sculpture would be appropriate
A water feature is a great focal point

A water feature is a great focal point

What is a focal point?

So what constitutes a focal point? Well pretty much anything! It’s a feature which draws the eye and could be anything from feature pots to sculptures, water features to arbours, birdbaths to feature trees. Anything goes. Just think about the location, the shape, the size and the journey to get there. Here are a few of the features we have used in some of the gardens we have designed or ones we have introduced into our own:

Feature gate

This Japanese inspired gate was designed especially for our clients and sets the mood for the garden beyond.

A Japanese-style bespoke gate creates a mood and the bespoke sculpture at the end of the path provides a focal point and encourages the journey into the garden

A Japanese-style bespoke gate creates a mood and the bespoke sculpture at the end of the path provides a focal point and encourages the journey into the garden

Feature plants

Choosing plants and locating them carefully can make them focal points in a garden. Here we used standard photinias to create an entrance to the new patio.

Standard photinias frame the entrance to the patio and form a focal point at the end of the path

Standard photinias frame the entrance to the patio and form a focal point at the end of the path

Feature tree and stone

In this garden we used a feature tree to create height and add interest. A stone which was unearthed during excavations was kept in the garden and used as a free focal point!

Here, both the feature tree, Euonymus europaeus, and the unearthed standing stone are focal points in the garden

Here, both the feature tree, Euonymus europaeus, and the unearthed standing stone are focal points in the garden

Arbour

Here we created an arbour and bespoke bench to provide clients with a lovely spot to sit in the shade on a sunny day.

A bespoke arbour can be a lovely central feature of a garden]

A bespoke arbour can be a lovely central feature of a garden]

Themed focal points

In this Japanese garden we used traditional Japanese focal points including a lantern, water feature and koi bridge.

A Japanese lantern, water feature and koi bridge set the mood in this garden

A Japanese lantern, water feature and koi bridge set the mood in this garden

Sculpture

We found this rusty rose made from corten steel in a local shop and we think it makes a wonderful focal point in the border, popping up between the herbaceous perennials.

Herbaceous planting will envelop this rusty rose so that it pops out of the border

Herbaceous planting will envelop this rusty rose so that it pops out of the border

Willow balls

These hand-made willow balls make a wonderful garden focal point. They can have lights installed inside them too to make a wonderful effect in the evening.

A willow ball with lighting set inside creates a wonderful focal point at night time

A willow ball with lighting set inside creates a wonderful focal point at night time

If you would like some advice on focal points in your garden, please get in touch.

Thank you for reading.

All at Vialii


Share the love...Share on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestShare on LinkedInEmail this to someone

Enjoyed reading this blog? Try these posts...