July 14, 2023
How to Make an Informal Garden

How to Make an Informal Garden

The informal garden is a great way to experiment with gardening and try out different planting schemes. It should be free-form and relaxed, with few strict rules. According to some designers, informal gardens are more natural looking because they have less structure and allow for more freedom with boundaries. Whether you choose an informal or a traditional garden, the important thing is to have fun with it.


When considering design ideas for your garden, consider the many benefits of a naturalistic ethos. This style draws inspiration from forests, meadows and woodlands, and it can create a tranquil, shady retreat, or a sun-drenched oasis. A naturalistic garden should incorporate a mixture of evergreen plants, ornamental grasses, and a variety of shrubs to provide structure and fill the space.

One of the primary benefits of naturalistic planting is that it creates a dynamic plant community. It promotes abstract thinking when selecting plants for the garden, encouraging you to plant a variety of shapes in a single planting area. Moreover, naturalistic gardens tend to promote self-seeding, which further adds to the naturalistic feel of the space. In addition, naturalistic planting entails following the principle of ecological layering, which most natural habitats follow. For example, a typical woodland consists of three layers.

Another benefit of using naturalistic planting in your garden is that it creates a sense of rhythm and harmony in the space. In addition to improving the soil, naturalistic planting also encourages wildlife. And while naturalistic plantings may be low maintenance, they still require proper management. For instance, you must keep in mind that naturalistic plants can look messy during winter months. For this reason, it is important to plant a variety of plants that need little maintenance.

If you are thinking of creating a naturalistic planting scheme for your garden, it is essential to consider its overall shape and size. If the garden is small, then going for an oval shape might be the best option. This style is based on plants that do not require much maintenance and looks great all year round.

If you’re not sure which style to go for, you can try testing different flowerbed designs on graph paper or color pictures from seed catalogues. Naturalistic gardens are most likely to include asymmetrical design elements, naturally shaped plants, and curved spaces. You can also include rustic furnishings and wood chips to add a more natural look to your garden. The best way to get a naturalistic look is to experiment with different planting styles.


The best way to create an informal garden is to follow a natural theme that emphasizes a sense of journey. You can achieve this by creating meandering paths in your garden. Such paths are designed to be pleasing to walk through, and they require a certain amount of space, repetition, and consistency in scale. A cottage garden is an excellent example, as is a woodland garden. For this style, materials that are not too geometric are best.

The look of an informal garden can be achieved by using a variety of plants in different colors and textures. Plants such as flowering plants, shrubs, and herbs provide an enticing scent. You should also use textures that make your garden appealing to the touch. Moreover, you can choose to incorporate fragrant plants to delight your visitors. You should also limit the area of grass, and instead place more emphasis on trees and herbaceous flowers.

The informal look can be achieved without creating a garden that’s a mess. It’s also important to consider the ultimate height and growing speed of your plants. Even small perennials can grow into huge, so it’s important to take the time to plan your planting scheme. Otherwise, you’ll be stuck in a constant maintenance cycle.

Informal gardens are also known as cottage gardens, and are generally characterized by gentle contours and flowing lines. Hard surfaces are softened by plants that spill over the edges and mix in random patterns. The informal garden style is often found in cottage gardens, woodland gardens, and meadow gardens. Cottage gardens usually include edible crops and flowers that attract bees and birds.

An informal garden design follows more natural lines than a formal one, and aims to provide a sense of indulgence and relaxation. The furnishings and plants are comfortable, and the layout is relaxed. A variety of accents, such as rustic containers, gazebos, and painted doorways, can be used to create an informal garden with style.

Cottage garden

An informal garden is a place to relax and unwind. It can be designed using a range of plants, and you should avoid using too many of any one type. Instead, try to include a range of different types and textures. This way, you can create a natural atmosphere. Choose plants that have interesting textures and colors, as well as those that offer pleasing scents. It is also a good idea to limit the use of grassy areas in the garden, and focus planting on shrubs and trees.

When planning an informal garden, you need to take into account how quickly and how high the plants will grow. Otherwise, you may find yourself in a constant cycle of upkeep and maintenance. You should also take into consideration the eventual height and speed of the plants in your garden, as many small perennials can grow quickly. It is also a good idea to avoid pick and mix planting, as this will result in a garden that lacks year-round structure and can be difficult to maintain.

For instance, a garden shed in an informal style should be discreetly placed, and should be low-maintenance. Start by plotting circular arcs from the centre points of your garden, and then merge them. Geometric forms will give an informal garden design a strength that is both subconscious and visually pleasing.

Water features are a common feature of informal gardens. When designed properly, they can make a stunning focal point, attracting wildlife and visitors. However, a poorly finished informal pond can make a natural garden look artificial and awkward. This is why informal water features should be carefully chosen. But be aware that a natural water feature is better than a manmade one.

Creating pathways is another way to create an informal garden. Unlike formal gardens, informal paths are not meant to be straight and are usually made of natural materials. Instead, they are designed to encourage visitors to wander and enjoy the garden.

Cottage style

A Cottage style informal garden is an excellent choice for a garden that has a natural aesthetic. This style incorporates elements such as old garden tools, watering cans, and seating areas. It also adds a vertical element to the garden. However, structures must complement the style and should have a purpose.

A cottage garden should consist of a variety of plants, including herbs and vegetables. It should also have perennials and annuals, which provide long-lasting color and stability. A carefully selected collection of perennials can give the garden a year-round feel. The most important plants in a cottage style garden are roses.

To add dramatic accents, consider using plants with deep colors. For instance, ‘Shiraz’ New Zealand flax and purple-leaved smoke bush are both attractive and useful. Their deep colors will draw attention to other plants in the area. To add further charm, consider scattering decorative pots with blooming plants along a pathway. The addition of an antique wooden wheelbarrow with flower pots is another great idea.

Despite their informal appearance, cottage gardens are full of color and diversity. A variety of textures and flowers, including a variety of herbs, will create an enchanting environment. In addition to flowers, cottage gardens should include plants with interesting shapes and fragrant scents. While grassy areas should be minimized, shrubs and trees should be the focal point.

The quintessential cottage garden evolved gradually. Unlike a contemporary style, a cottage style garden is traditionally informal, with no rigid planting plan. It often welcomed self-seeders, as they were easily propagated from cuttings or collected from the native countryside. Typically, the cottage style informal garden is full of edible plants.

A wooden picket fence is another common feature of a cottage style informal garden. In years gone by, these fences were used to protect plants and animals. Horses were also used for transportation. Adding a fence or gate will create a boundary around your cottage garden, and you should choose one in proportion to the size of your cottage.

Cottage style informal gardens are typically comprised of masses of flowering plants. They feature curving pathways, white picket fences, and rose-covered arbors. Other plants used to create this style include hollyhocks, nicotiana, poppy, and nasturtium. You can also incorporate shrubs and small trees to create additional height and visual interest in your garden.

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