5 Garden Themes for Home Gardeners
By Laura McElroy

A theme garden is popular today and gives gardeners a template or palette to use. It makes choosing all the elements easier because they have to all support a single purpose. 

You may want to choose a specific color, plants with a meaning or those that have a pleasing aroma or attract butterflies, bees or birds. With a little planning and by carefully selecting flowers, shrubs, trees and hard materials, you can create a garden with a specific purpose. 

  1. Asian garden

A theme garden can start with a sculpture or art piece that creates a focal point. The Soothing Company has a wide selection of classical and contemporary styled outdoor water features. If you add a fountain to your garden, such as one of their Asian fountain, it immediately creates a soothing atmosphere. Asian gardens reflect feelings of serenity that invite meditation and contemplation. 

Create a winding pathway that leads to the water feature. Straight pathways are believed to allow malevolent spirits to come into a house, whereas winding pathways hinder their movement. 

Stick to the use of Asian plants and follow the principles of Feng Shui. Flowering cherry and Japanese maple are good choices. Bamboo is also often used in an Asian garden but it’s preferable to plant it in a large container as it grows aggressively. 

  1. Herbal tea garden

If you love drinking herbal tea, why not grow a herbal tea garden? You can go beyond growing thyme, sage and rosemary and include a whole host of plants you can harvest for tea. Chamomile, lemongrass, mint, pineapple sage, rose hips and anise hyssop are must-haves. 

Some of them have great healing benefits and most of them are delicious too. For example, chamomile is a great tea to drink before bedtime because it will help to reduce anxiety and promote sleep. Lemon balm has a citrusy, minty taste and makes a delicious tea that is also believed to have stress-reducing properties. 

  1. Butterfly garden

You may want to create a garden that provides an important habitat for butterflies. Their natural habitats are being increasingly lost to industrialization. Butterflies need nectar all year round and so you need to plan with this in mind. 

You also need to think about including plants that provide nourishment for butterfly caterpillars as well as the nectar plants. A garden for butterflies needs to have plenty of sun, rocks, trees, shrubs, a damp area and shelter from the wind. 

  1. Lemonade garden

This garden will contain all the ingredients you need to make your own lemonade. Grow your own lemons as well as lemon verbena and lemon balm to add a zing. Grow stevia and you are able to sweeten your lemonade naturally. 

If you want your lemonade to have a minty flavor, grow some spearmint. Pineapple sage adds a different dimension to your lemonade, as do blueberries. Add violets to make lavender-colored lemonade. 

  1. Perfume garden

To create a perfume garden, you can use plants that release their fragrance when you step on them, and others that you can cut or dry to use in potpourri. Lavender is well-known for its mild, earthy scent. Sweet Alyssum is a delicate little flower with a sweet, subtle scent and provides a carpet of natural perfume. 

Scented geraniums have glands at the base of the leaf hairs and when you crush the leaves, the scent is released. Hyacinths in many colors add beauty and an intoxicating scent in a warm breeze. 

You can’t have a scented garden without roses. If you give them sun and rich, well-drained soil, they will offer you fruity, musky or anise-like aromas, depending on the variety. 

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