Greenhouse Canada

Ideas for a five-sense garden experience

May 10, 2012  By Canadian Garden Centre & Nursery

May 10, 2012, Toronto — Consumers are embracing full sensory indulgence this summer, taking sight, sound, scent, touch and taste into account in their gardens.

“One of the biggest trends we are seeing in gardens this year is the resurgence in encouraging people to enjoy gardens on an all-sensory level,” said Denis Flanagan of Landscape Ontario. “Gardens have evolved. We are seeing a major shift from the traditional garden, which is mainly esthetically pleasing, to gardens that now engage all five senses.”

To capitalize on this trend, Landscape Ontario offers four tips to add an element of style and the senses to the garden:

  1. Use of external art pieces. Gardens are all about life, but this year, according to Flanagan, more and more people are incorporating different elements into their gardens to create what he calls a “living art form." Carvings, fabrics, coloured wood, rocks – these are all external pieces that help create a personal and expressive space. 
  2. Use of water. Water is essential for flowers to bloom, plants to grow and trees to bear fruit, but more than ever it has become an essential element of design in the garden. Fountains and streams are esthetically pleasing, offer calming sounds and can sustain life.
  3. Bring the indoors outdoors. In the last few years, the garden has transformed into a real extension of the home. From outdoor kitchens to fully-furnished rooms, one of the biggest trends in gardening this year is the creation of a functional space in the outdoors. In many cases, outdoor garden spaces are becoming more lavish and more functional than indoor spaces.
  4. Serve edible flowers. Adding edible elements grown in your own garden to a salad will bring together the sense of space and taste. Common garden flowers suitable for use in salads include marigolds, dandelions, carnations, day lilies, pansies, chrysanthemums and nasturtiums.

Landscape Ontario's mission is to promote the horticulture industry in Ontario while also promoting the joys and benefits of plants and green spaces.

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