Learning Miniature Garden Design from the “Big” Garden Experts
Prior to writing my first book, Gardening in Miniature: Create Your Own Tiny Living World, I stayed away from any garden or miniature
book for the past 5 years so I could keep my voice and view completely original. And now that my book diet is over, I’ve been binging a bit. Um, ya, I bought 15 books within one week – and it’s been really, really fun having a stack of great garden books around, cherishing and wading through them one-by-one.
What has this got to do with miniature gardening? If you are just as obsessed about this miniature garden topic as I am, just about every garden book has some sort of miniature garden idea within its pages. So, here is the first of my book reviews – but first let us back up a bit.
Gardening in miniature, despite the misleading tie to fairy gardening, is all about gardening. It’s about creating a space with plants to enjoy ourselves, get some peace, exercise our creativity and/or illustrate who we are through our choices. It’s no different than planning your “full-sized” garden or decorating the inside of your house to reflect your personality – except we can do anything we want in miniature.
So, after we know what miniature garden plants to use, how do we find out how to plant them so the garden looks beautiful? Well, we turn to the full-size-garden experts to see how they do it. (You laugh – but what else do I call them? ;o)
There’s a brand new garden book that will help us fine-tune our plant choices called Fine Foliage, by Christina Salwitz and Karen Chapman. It is an excellent example of how we can learn from full-size-garden experts.
Fine Foliage is a fun little book at 8” x 8” square, and the focus is on – you guessed it – foliage. And damn-Fine Foliage at that. Christina and Karen have assembled approximately 122 combinations of different types of plants, for sun and shade, plants that can be used in-ground or in containers. The best part of the book is the “Why this works” section within every combination. Do you want to get inside a couple of designer’s heads to “see” how they think this stuff through? You got it right here in this great little resource.
Christina and Karen have created the perfect demonstration of what we advise – to match or complement the colors of the plants, and mix-up the leaf textures – and this design rule works for the tiniest of gardens too. If you’re wondering why your miniature garden doesn’t look right, this could be the case.
Checkout the Fine Foliage website for the ordering information and for more, ongoing design tips from Christina and Karen here. Keep a copy of Fine Foliage handy, you can definitely apply it to any garden project.
Do you have a book that we can apply to miniature gardening that you would like me to review? Feel free to get in touch with me at info@TwoGreenThumbs.com. Note that I will only do positive reviews.
Like this? Want to learn more about miniature gardening? Join us here.