Gravel garden.

Gravel garden is a decoration of yard. Make it your own hands is not difficult if you know a few key points.

European love to paths of colored gravel and stony Japanese gardens perfectly merged in a gravel garden. This design element minimizes the care of plants, but allows as long as possible to keep the beautiful appearance of garden.

Advantages of gravel garden.

Creation of gravel garden on your yard – is not only fashionable, but also very practical. This design solution has many advantages:

  • the possibility to choose any size and shape of gravel garden;
  • the possibility of placing on any terrain;
  • easily to create;
  • ease of care;
  • cheap materials.

To create a gravel garden can not only on the well-kept terrain, but also almost any area (wasteland, the sun, in the shade). Properly creation of gravel garden will look good on large area and on the half-meter piece of land.

Care for established plants is minimized. In addition, at any time, if it desired and necessary, the plants can be transplanted to another place.

It is perfect for lazy people, and for those who because of the large amount of work can not devote much time for their gardens.

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Decorative stairs in landscape design.

Most gardens have a complex relief, which requires the construction of a convenient staircase, with which you can overcome a difficult barrier.

It must be remembered that such staircase is an integral part of the architectural design of the garden, so it should be not only functional, but also beautiful. Thus, the staircase can be made of wood, metal and stone.

The most difficult part is the making of metal stairs, because this material is more difficult to process. Among other things, the staircase can serve as a peculiar showcase for planting exotic flowers and plants. Metal stairs can have wooden or stone elements.

The base of the staircase is recommended to make of building blocks or bricks. As a facing material you can use artificial or natural stone and plates with a smooth or embossed surface. During the construction of stairs is the possibility to combine different materials, which are selected based on design ideas and technical solutions.

Installation of stairs begins with drafting of a sketch. It is best to prepare a few sketches for this and then stop your choice on the most beautiful. For example, the staircase can be done on the slope, but in this case it is necessary to take into account that it is traumatic. As for location, the staircase can be built perpendicular to the side of the garden, or in the middle of the slope. On both sides of the construction can be mounted double parapets, and the free space between them you can fill with flowers and other plants.

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Ornamental grasses.

In the modern landscape design are increasingly used ornamental grasses. Ornamental cereals are able to give your garden a unique charm. They can grow in the summer heat and winter frosts. Many designers prefer to use ornamental grasses in conjunction with flowers, herbs and other plants.

The simplicity and unpretentiousness of ornamental grasses is their advantage. Basically they like places where the sunlight is in excess. With regard to soil moisture, they are equally easy to tolerate lack of moisture and its large amount, only when the soil has good water permeability.

Popular plants for the garden are different types of Miscanthus – M. sinensis, M. sacchariflorus, M. purpurascens. Spikelets of this high plant may be of different colors – pink, grey or golden. It must be remembered that for the proper development, Miscanthus requires a sufficient amount of light and water. With proper care, they grow up to two meters.

If you want to make changes in your garden as soon as possible – you can plant the Pennisetum. This Asian plant has outlandish spikelets which resemble small brushes. Variety of Pennisetums allows you to select the different variants of garden design. Some Pennisetums have a small height (P. villosum, P. longistylum or P. orientale), while others can grow up to 1.5 meters. Colors of spikelets of various types of Pennisetums are very diverse: from vinous to dark purple (P. glaucum). As for the resistance to cold, there are Pennisetums, which can endure it fairly easily (P. alopecuroides).

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Water plays an important role for the plants in the garden. The vast majority of plants do not tolerate water stagnation. The proximity of ground waters lead to oppression and rotting of the root system of trees and shrubs. In the water-logged areas are formed moss and mold. If in your garden is a retaining wall or fence with a deep foundation, it can prevent the drain of water.

Drainage – a special system of underground channels, which reduces the water level, perform its removal from various structures and dries soil for the normal cultivation of crops on it. For example, if the water table is at a depth of 1.5 m or closer to the surface of the ground – soil drainage is needed. And if in your garden are paths, playgrounds and other facilities where the rain water accumulates – you need a storm water drain.

There are two types of drainage: open and closed. Open drain consists of a plurality of open channels which are apart by a certain distance. These drainage systems allow quickly to get rid of the harmful effects of groundwater. But the open drainage system is not the best effect on the appearance of your garden, so they are used rarely.

Main applications of drainage:
drainage of agricultural land, gardens, landscaped areas;

  • drainage of the carriageways, sidewalks;
  • withdrawal of excess water from the soil and other sewage systems;
  • moisture protection of landscape structures – walls, hills, slopes, terraces and artificial reservoirs;
  • moisture protection of building foundations;
  • accumulation, evaporation and distribution of the collected water into the soil.
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Water in your garden.

Water is a very important part of our life. Reservoirs of different shapes, sizes and types considerably enliven any garden. For centuries the gardeners around the world sought to introduce these elements in the garden plan. Water emphasizes relief bends, reflects the movement of the wind, enhances the play of light and shadow. In addition, water significantly improves the microclimate of the garden, creating a more comfortable environment for plants, animals and people.

Reservoirs in the garden by origin and appearance can be divided into three types – a natural reservoir (lakes pond, river, stream, waterfall, swamp), that is created by nature; artificial reservoir of natural look, created by human (swimming pool, waterfall, fountain, canal).

With the help of modern industrial technologies, materials and high level of development of landscape design, you can recreate in the garden almost any kind of natural reservoir: pond, stream, waterfall, pool, fountain, water slide, cascade, etc.

Type, size and shape of the reservoir largely depend on the size of the area, its shape and relief, location of buildings.

Reservoir in the garden creates a very cozy atmosphere. Mirror surface of the pond soothes and quiet murmur of a stream or fountain causes a lyrical mood. If you dream about your own pond, lake, fountain, waterfall or stream – do not put off your dreams!

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Garden paths.

An integral part of any garden are the garden paths. Not only do they allow the shoes to remain clean after a walk in the garden, but also can become a beautiful decoration.

Material for garden paths can be very different. It all depends on your imagination. But in any case, the garden path must harmoniously to fit in the garden landscape and be proportionate with house. If it is a big house on a large area, respectively, and the paths should be massive, for example, made of natural stone or pavers.

Types of garden paths:

  • sandy paths;
  • paths made of breakstone, gravel or brick;
  • paths made of reinforced concrete;
  • paths made of concrete slabs;
  • paths made of paving slabs;
  • paths made of natural stone;
  • paths made of decking (garden parquet).

But in any case you should remember that before you will make the garden paths, especially from expensive materials, it is necessary to plan, where they will be laid. So do not hurry.

Professional builders recommend construct garden paths for pedestrian movement 75 cm in wide and 5 cm in height above ground level.

You have to lay the garden paths in summer or autumn, because in winter and spring there is a shift (shrinkage) of the soil.

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Organic fertilizers.

The organic fertilizers comprise in their structure only natural ingredients. Organic fertilizers as well as mineral fertilizers, contain potassium, phosphorus, nitrogen, calcium, iron, magnesium, etc. (almost the entire periodic table). The difference is that all these elements are the natural (animal or vegetable) origin.

The main organic fertilizers are: manure, humus, peat, bird droppings and various compost.


Manure is suitable absolutely for all plants and all kinds of soil, and 2-3 feedings per season would be enough to get a good harvest, and improve the quality of ornamental plants. The most valuable fertilizer, which is obtained on the basis of fully decomposed manure is humus.


By itself, the peat does not contain many nutrients, but it increases the humus content in the soil and improves its physiological properties.

Bird droppings

Bird droppings is a valuable organic fertilizer. The chicken and pigeon droppings have the most saturated chemical composition. Oversupply of bird droppings in the soil can lead to accumulation of nitrates in plants, so try to stick the following proportions:

• The norm of moist bird droppings: 0.5 kg per 1 sq. m of soil.

• The norm of dry bird droppings : 0.2 kg per 1 sq. m of soil.

Sawdust as fertilizer

Sawdust used as fertilizer usually in combination with urea, as they practically do not contain nitrogen. This is an excellent organic additive for heavy clay and loamy soils.

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Types of alpine hills.

Alpine hills can be quite different – from the largest, covering tens of square meters, to the tiny, no more than 1 square meter. It all depends on the size of your garden. But the height of the alpine hill is directly dependent on its area. High hills and slopes can not be imitated in a limited space.

Types of alpine hills:

1. Mountain slope (cliff) – imitation of rock outcrops. Possible to build only on a steep slope.

2. Alpine meadow – alpine meadow, rocky soil, undersized grains.

3. Mountain valley – a rocky garden.

4. Water cascade (mountain stream).

5. Forest ravine.

6. Japanese Hill – there should be nothing superfluous.

Mini alpine hill – a miniature imitation of a mountain landscape in separate containers (pots, containers, cups or bowls), which can be used for decoration of the garden and terrace. In such a small copy of the natural relief, the stones are combined with a few small plants and dwarf trees.

Rocky hill is the most decorative. Create it is not so simple. Alternating layers, the correct installation of stones, a lot of time for creation of landscape – are only a few parameters of the complexity.

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How to choose plants for the alpine hill.

If you want every year to change the look of alpine hill – suitable are the annuals plants. And to get a stable result – bright colors perennial grasses. Think also about the change of seasons of flowering.

Here are a few specific examples. These plants for the alpine hill are literally created by nature:

1. Edelweiss.
This is perennial, frost resistant.

2. Stonecrop.
There are several species of this humble plant. Completely unpretentious, securely attached to any ground by its creeping stems. Under the influence of sunlight the leaves of stonecrop become more vivid. It can be used for decoration edge of alpine hill.

3. Saxifrage

In the spring, these lovely plant literally covered with small flowers. The plant prefers shaded areas, its green network covers even the stones.

4. Pasque-flower
The ideal perennial plant for the alpine slide from family of buttercup. One of the first blossoms in early spring.

Also, suitable for alpine hill are such shrubs and flowers:

  • juniper (various types)
  • pygmy barberry;
  • spiraea japonica;
  • aquilegia;
  • alpine aster;
  • crocus;
  • phlox styloid.

With the help of different types of plants, you can create absolutely unique alpine hill. It is important to create the effect of the mountain atmosphere.

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Three elements of the ideal alpine hill.

It is easy to achieve the ideal, if properly combine all elements.

A place
In the mountains, a lot of sun during the day. Well-lit area will be ideal for the realization of your ideas. You can think about water sources: imitation of mini-waterfall or pond. It is important to strike a balance, to prevent waterlogging.

Drainage and soil

Alpine hill created not for one season. It is important to create conditions for planting of plants. Ideal for alpine hill is drainage layer of 25-30 cm. Use the broken bricks, expanded clay, gravel. To prevent shrinkage – sand (10 cm). And on top – mixture for planting: turf, peat, gravel. Neutral or slightly alkaline soils are suitable for the majority of alpine plants.

Mountains and stones create harmony in which our hill needs. It is advisable to use the stones of the same breed and color gamut. For the compositions are required large stones, they create the character of the hill. The space between them you can decorate with smaller stones. Favorites for rock gardens – limestone, tufa (travertine), granite, sandstone and shale. For the natural appearance of the hill is important speed of “aging” of stones, that is, the destruction, the weathering.

One of the most important elements of rock garden – plants. And this is a topic of a separate study.

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