October 16, 2008

Garden Inspiration: A Vignette Nestled among Grasses

Once again from zone 8 in southeastern Virginia, Vikki is sharing her gardens with us. Vikki anchors the grass bed with ornamental grasses, such as miscanthus and muhlenbergia. These robust, fountain-shaped grasses provide a pleasing backdrop to showcase the mix of smaller, colorful perennials and annuals.

If you look down the length of the grass bed from east to west, you can see the anchoring by the ornamental grasses. These grasses serve a purpose to give the viewer an idea of the length of the garden. When you place objects of the same size at the beginning and end of the path, it gives you a perspective about the distance. This connection draws your eye down the length of this border. All along the border, the foliage textures work well together and the color scheme is consistently connected. If you look west to east, the garden shed at the end provides a destination. When you walk down the border, you’re given the impression of a logical end to the garden.

If you look closely at the east-west and west-east long views, you’ll not see a special surprise along the way. As Vikki demonstrates in her grass garden vignette, you can juxtaposition smaller plantings and garden art among the larger grasses to add an element of surprise. This little vignette makes you stop and look at this scene. When you look at a vignette such as this miniature among the larger bed, what do you see?

In my mind I see a tranquil, tropical scene. The low-growing squiggles of lime green Sedum ‘Angelina’ flow around the stone Japanese lantern providing the imagery of a pond surrounding a pagoda. The emerald green, rounded ruffled foliage of the Gerbera daisy resemble a tropical plant at the edge of the pond. The orange of the coleus and impatiens echo the idea of a tropical flower garden. Surrounded by flowing arches of grass, the blades of irises and the society garlic, the vignette appears as those it is backed by a tropical forest. All of the elements in this vignette work together as there are no definitive borders to this scene; it flows and connects with the rest of the grass garden. There’s nothing to jar the eye. Nothing feels out of place.

Freelance travel writer. My current fiction writing projects include a completed manuscript and several works in progress.

By the way, my name is pronounced fred-ah, not freed-ah. Thank you.

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