A landscaped garden is a fantastic addition to any home. But when planning the new features for your garden, there is often one important component that tends to get overlooked. The garden walkway or path that is dedicated to getting you from one part of your garden to the other. By leaving a walkway out of your landscaping plans, your garden can feel fragmented with no cohesion between one space and another.
Aside from serving the practical function of helping you journey through your garden, a well designed path helps to create the mood you wish to evoke. Through the clever use of shape, dimensions and materials you can create a range of atmospheres within different sections of your garden, whether this be formal, informal or fun.
As well as the creative side of planning your walkway a number of practical considerations will also influence your decisions. Think about your budget, the potential traffic and foot flow, as well as safety (particularly if being used by young children or the elderly).
To help you get started, here are 10 useful tips for creating the perfect garden walkway:
- Change the width of your walkway depending on the amount of traffic it will be receiving. High traffic areas are likely to require a wider path to allow for people to pass easily without ending up in the flowerbeds.
- Also think about the needs of those using your garden when deciding on the width. Families with young children may require wider paths to allow for pushchairs and buggies, or children’s toys to run easily up and down the path. Likewise, elderly users may require a wider path particularly if they need mobility aids to assist them with moving around the garden.
- Use outdoor lighting such as lanterns, lamps, posts, recessed lights and solar lights for safety and to highlight routes through the garden. For more information on this please read our outdoor lighting blog.
- Choose a material that’s best suited for your needs (and budget). With a wide range of paving materials available it’s worth doing a bit of homework prior to selection to make sure it’s going to stand up to the demands of your garden throughout the year.
- Why go for a straightforward walkway? Add twists and turns or mix your materials to create you own designs and add a touch of flair to your garden.
- Create a plan of destination zones, to naturally shepherd people to areas of your garden you want to highlight such as a garden structure or sculpture, a particular plant of interest, a play area or a pond.
- A nice visual trick is to make the width of your pathway shorter to indicate that you have arrived at a destination (such as a tree, flowerbed or summerhouse).
- Pathways by themselves can look very plain so add visual interest with bedding, borders and small trees around the edges.
- Plant box hedging along the side of a path to emphasise its shape and keep a clean line between your grass and flower beds.
- Paths are particularly good for creating a manicured look for your garden by keeping gravel, or slate chips in one place and mulch and plants off walkways.
If you are thinking of landscaping your garden remember to give consideration to its walkways to tie it all together. It may seem trivial, but a well designed path has many benefits that could be the final thing a garden needs. For more information, please contact Thames Valley Landscapes on 01628 629720 or send us an enquiry.