by Jacklyn Renz
How would it feel to step out of your home and into another world? That is what a whimsical garden oasis can provide. Full of personality, unique touches, and creative character additions. A garden with whimsy will leave you feeling inspired and whisked away to another world! What can you add to your garden to achieve this wonderful whimsy? Read on for ideas.
Begin with the Pathway
For starters, a unique pathway to your garden will be fun to follow. Pathways are an important part of the landscape because they define the border for foot traffic. Large cobblestones are unique, adding a smooth hardscape texture to the entire garden. Try round cut-outs from an old stump. Something as simple as pebbles lined with colorful flowers will serve a double purpose of drawing the eye towards your garden and adding a pop of color.
Calling All Creatures
What would a whimsical garden be without creatures to populate it? There are some staple features such as gnomes and fairies that offer that fun, lighthearted touch. Also, trending these days with garden whimsy are colorful frogs, owls, birds, and other friendly faces. The great thing about the character of creatures is that they can be off-the-wall and funny, adding humor, smiles, and laughter to your playful garden palace.
Night Lights for Night Owls
Perhaps you are more of a night owl than a morning bird. Lighting will bring a spark of wonder to any night time garden space. The sky’s the limit with lighting! Any unique glass or ceramic piece can be easily turned into a lantern with a simple candle. If electricity is accessible, then hanging lanterns made from mason jars and christmas lights can do wonders. There are store-bought options as well. Cascading lights hanging from a tree, or several, can be used to create a cocoon of light surrounding the garden.
Trinkets and Detail
The little details in a garden make for fun conversation pieces. The smaller pieces can be collected and added over time without crowding the scenery. Things like painted stones, mushroom figurines, small creatures, and colorful glass bottles are just a few of the trinkets that come to mind. If you have a theme, such as garden tea party or vintage vacation, then stick with the items that will elaborate on your chosen theme. Not only will these trinkets add fun elements to the space, they will make for a great collector’s hobby too!
Plants Not Just for Pots
It’s no doubt that any gardener loves a variety of plant life. Now is the time to use that wide spectrum of loved foliage to add pops of color to the landscape. But don’t stop there. The fun thing about whimsy is that almost anything can be used as a planter. Old tables, rusted chairs, bathtubs, instruments...we’ve seen it all! One quick note is to be sure that anything used as a planter have adequate drainage for your plants.
New Life for the Old Shoe
Now is the time to resurrect life into the once tossed out and forgotten things. Birdbaths make beautiful miniature gardenscapes. Broken pots can be stacked and planted with cascading vines that pour over into the garden. Old garden gear such as wheelbarrows, rusted shovels, and worn out wagons can be used as planters or centerpieces. Try grouping together some of those flea market finds for a fun focal point.
Vintage Finds for Whimsical Flair
It seems that vintage is all the rage these days, and gardening is no exception. For added depth to the garden, draw the eye upward with tree decor. Use vintage tea cups and tea pots dangling from the branches overhead. Tarnished silver pieces can be nailed to fences or trees for a fun indoor feel. If you have adequate shelter, vintage books, suitcases, or trunks can be added for both reading material and drink placement.
As with any garden space, watching wildlife can be a fun past time while you sit and enjoy nature. Invite these creatures in with unique feeders and houses. Birdhouses are especially versatile whilst creating your whimsical world. Paint them any color or stain that is needed for the space. These feathered friend feeders can be hung overhead from branches or posted at any height to keep the space evenly filled. Birdbaths make a beautiful whimsy highlight and can be decorated with stones, vines, or lights.
Have a Seat
What would any garden be without a place to sit and enjoy it? It’s more than just patio furniture that we can add to the garden (although patio furniture will work just fine). If you are handy at sewing, make your own outdoor pillows using a unique print of your choice. Old furniture can be repurposed for life outside. Use tree stumps with added seat cushions. Swings aren’t just for the young; add a metal swing, with hanging lights and throw pillows. Whatever it is you do with seating, be sure it’s comfortable. Without proper seating, your gardenscape can’t be properly enjoyed.
Another staple item for a whimsical garden scene is a fairy garden. A fairy garden is a small garden complete with living structures (for the fairies, of course), architecture, and growing plants. This cute little garden highlight begs for the artist to have their way in creating a miniature garden world. A fairy garden also serves as a wonderful project to work on with your kids. Start them out early and their thumb will be green in no time.
Your whimsical garden has satisfied the visual and tactile senses thus far, but what about some sweet sounds to satisfy the ear? This is where fountains come in. They are a gentle flow of welcomed relaxation. Fountains have a wide range of size and come in a variety of shapes. Depending on your tastes, fountains can be simple with stones, plant life, and pebbles, or a bit more elaborate, made out of the more unusual of things, like an old piano (yes, these do exist) or a watering can.
Now that you have some ideas for your unique whimsical garden space, go and have fun. There is no limit to whimsy, so let your creative juices flow freely!
Sources: pintrest.com, thegardenglove.com, fairygardening.com