What are the features of modern gardens?
Modern gardens are characterized by straight lines, minimalism and elegance. They are based on a few essential principles such as:
- They are built to bring man closer to nature.
- They follow an uncomplicated design and are created with natural materials.
- Every element in the garden should be there for a purpose. In other words, unnecessary ornaments should be avoided at all costs.
- They are designed to be orderly and functional.
- Integration with the architecture of the house as well as with the other elements in the façade is an essential part of modern garden design.
- Furniture, plants, structures and other décor details play a significant role in the configuration of a modern garden.
What types of plants are most suitable for a modern garden?
The main purpose of any garden is to showcase nature, so the first thing we must consider is the type of plants that corresponds to the style we want to capture in the space. For modern gardens, the following vegetation is ideal:
- Bamboo and tall grasses: These plants are distinguished by their cylindrical geometry and some of them bloom seasonally, adding beauty to the garden. They are particularly ideal in a minimalist garden.
- Ferns: They are easy to maintain and are a perfect choice for vertical gardens.
- Hare tail or lagurus: This is an ideal choice as a decorative plant, and it does not need much care.
- Plants with striking foliage: Since the modern style seeks to maintain a bare minimum in terms of ornaments, it should use natural colours, shapes and textures to dress the environment.
- Grass: When using grass in the garden, it is vital that it should always be kept in perfect condition, since the modern style prioritizes order and neatness.
- Flowers: In modern gardens, flowers play a secondary role, but this does not mean you should exclude them when designing the garden. Ideally, flowers with long stems – lilies, iris and hyacinths – should be used.
When you are deciding the type of plants to incorporate in a modern garden, bear in mind the climate in your area. For instance, ferns will thrive in cool and humid conditions and can be a perfect addition to a shady corner of a modern garden in Kochi, Mumbai and Chennai. While they will also survive in colder places, they might not be the best choice in a place such as New Delhi, which has high summer temperatures. It’s advisable to consult a local landscape architect to get ideas on the perfect plants to use in your garden.
What materials should I use for a modern garden?
A modern garden should be simple but elegant, so importance should be given to the materials used in it. You will come across a choice of materials such as concrete, ceramics and stone in several types. Gravel is another material that is commonly used to pave areas in the garden to provide a contrast of shapes and textures without disturbing the sober colour palette. Bricks and wood are also often used to bring warmth to a modern garden.
What type of furniture is best for a modern garden?
The furniture in a modern garden, must match the overall architectural style. Pieces that have straight and simple lines, sober colours and natural materials such as rattan or wicker and of course, wood, are recommended. Since one of the intentions of the modern-style garden is to maintain a close relationship with nature, comfort is a vital element for the furniture as it should allow you to create a place for relaxation.
What are the essential decorative elements in a modern garden?
Modern gardens should not have too many decorative objects, but you can use a few that help to create a space that showcases nature. However, don’t forget to use a focal point that stands out from the rest of the elements to create a stunning feature in the garden.
Water: You can add a fountain, a garden pond, and if possible, a swimming pool. If you have the space to install a pool in the garden, choose a curved design to create a harmonious contrast in the environment.
Art: Sculptures can also be included to raise the aesthetics of the garden by adding sophistication.
Other decorative objects: Other wooden or concrete elements such as pergolas, bridges and planters can be used to enhance the modern style.
How important is lighting in a modern garden?
The lighting in the garden plays a significant role in ensuring that it has the ideal environment that can be enjoyed at any time of the day. Our recommendations for lighting in the garden of a modern house are:
- LED lights: They are the most suitable for decorating outdoor areas, as they give a magical touch to the ambiance in the garden. LED lights can be installed in several creative ways to enhance the beauty or mood of the garden, so be innovative to achieve a unique and personalized look for your garden. You can find them in a range to suit your budget. For instance, solar powered LED coloured stick lamps cost around 250 INR to 400 INR per piece, and they can be used to light up the lawn without spending additionally on wiring. Alternatively, you can get wall-mounted motion-sensor LED lights at a starting price of 500 INR per piece.
- Lighting the pathways: Paved paths and trails are crucial elements that help to make a modern garden more spectacular. You can use LED tiles along the pathways to make the garden look more attractive and aesthetic, especially at night.
- Illuminate pots and planters: This can help to highlight the vegetation, besides adding personality to the garden. Additionally, you can use mirrors or reflectors to enhance the feeling of spaciousness and luminosity in the garden. Illuminated planters are not cheap, as they can cost between 3,500 INR to 21,000 INR depending upon the size. However, they will add a stunning and modern decorative highlight to your garden.
What colours are suitable in modern gardens?
The modern style uses neutral colours to create a light and sophisticated design. Use natural and neutral tones on the furniture as well as the walls. This will create a nice contrast to the vibrant green of the plants, adding vitality to the environment, besides bringing a touch of elegance, spaciousness and luminosity that is essential for the modern style.
What other factors will help to design a functional modern garden?
While design is the most crucial factor in creating a garden, don’t overlook the maintenance that it requires to keep it looking spectacular throughout the year. For instance, with the high summer temperatures in metropolises such as New Delhi and Mumbai, not all types of plants can survive the heat, especially when they are subject to direct sunlight in a terrace garden. Additionally, with water shortages being common in landlocked cities such as Hyderabad and Bangalore, it’s worth considering the installation of automated drip irrigation and misting systems to conserve water and to keep your plants healthy in summer. Consult a landscape architect to design a dream garden that is not only modern, but also beautiful, efficient, organized and functional.