When you think about landscaping, the two things that come in your mind are hardscape and softscape. In the last segment we covered briefly about soft scaping your garden. In this blog let’s look upon the topic of hardscaping. We are going to answer four majorly asked question about the same while showing one design idea.
What do you mean by hardscaping?
All the hard-surfaced materials used on our terrace gardens or backyards which are man-made comes under hardscaping. The pavements, fountains, patio, decks etc. All are part of hardscaping. Historians have also used few elements of hardscaping to enhance the beauty of their gardens. Persian gardens were known for water body in front of their built form. This helped them to keep their indoors cool. Hardscaping allows us to do some chores which can not be done over the grass patch. It helps us in activities like sitting, walking, running etc.
What things to consider?
While filling in your garden with hard surfaces the only thing to consider is the drainage pattern. How to create the drainage line so that the rain water can run off. Now two things can be done, we can lay certain underground pipelines so that the rain water can be used properly later on or we can just allow it to percolate into the soil. The latter helps to increase the ground water table. In present scenario, it is a must to think about creating such design which helps us to save the environment. Creating channels for the rain water which can be used to water plants or to increase the water below the ground, always works. This can be created by having a level difference. Certain usage of gravel stones can help the water to percolate within the soil. Using some amount of grass patches between, so that water can be soaked within.
When dealing with terrace gardens make sure that the damp proof course is applied with the flooring. This shall prevent water to seep into the slab and thus preventing water leakages. Here too, the slope can be designed to harvest the rain water. Always appoint an architect for such purposes or consult them before making such decisions.
What materials to work with?
There are thousands of materials that pop up each day to be chosen from. These materials based on our style our budget can be picked up from various shops. Once before designing your garden always make sure that the amount of load your terrace can take, is calculated. With this data you can then opt for materials which suits your requirements. Also design in such a way that, there is a play of two or three elements taking place. Adding these materials will enhance your garden instantly and help you notice small pieces at every nook or corner.
Now talking about different materials, if you prefer stone more than a brick, we have flag stones, sandstone and even decorative stones which can suit our taste. There is something about stones, specially the textured one’s which readily energizes the space. The only drawback is that they might cause the temperature to rise as the absorb heat.
Then comes the brick. One of the oldest materials which can be used to create various patterns on the floor to boost up our garden. This can also be used to create a jali wall or a statement element in your gardens. Brick is highly used in England in the form of flooring. Apart from that adding brick to create sections or differentiate one space from another is the best way to go.
Decorative pieces of stone or gravel- these tiny pieces of stone are so helpful to fill the space and decorate your garden. They can be used beside a partition, near the plants etc. decorative stones also come in bigger sizes. They are known as boulders, just add them to be your focal point and your good to go!
Wood! one of my favorites to add over a deck or even on the floor. A dark color wood laid in panels help to grasp your eyes on a terrace garden. This might not be possible for a lower budget project. But even still a small segment should be left to add on some wood to it. Decks, steps, planter boxes, jalli, trellis, pergola and furniture are some products by which wooden touch can be added.
How to plan the hardscape element?
Here the design which I have taken is almost a square form. understanding of your form plays a key role. If it’s a rectangular area, always opt for something which elongates the garden even more. Creating a longer path by placing the focal point over the end and making the viewer travel all around, helps to generate interest of the person in the garden.
When it comes to a square form, things become a little difficult. You have less space to travel on both sides. Thus, you have to design in such a way that the whole area is utilized. Opting for diagonal planning works almost every time. Diagonal planning means planning in an angular way. Create paths having some angle and at every step place a screen. This won’t reveal your garden at once. But makes sure that you do not go overboard with the screens.
With my design I have done the same, instead of creating a straight path I have opted to create one that makes you travel all along. I might be wrong but a design which reveals itself as soon as you see, has no ability to grasp any interest.
Thus, always opt for a better planning according to the form of the area you working on.
Hope you all liked one more of the landscape series of the blog. Feel free to share or comment below with your queries if any. Until next time , sit back and enjoy reading this blog in your terrace gardens.