Garden Living: Arbors, Gazebos And Gates
From a design point of view, gates and arbors provide points of interest and focus, highlighting both natural features of the landscape and special plants the gardener wishes to display. They are thus an essential element of garden design, providing or adding to the basic structure which will be clothed in color and life according to the plants chosen.
The dictionary defines an arbor simply as a shelter of vines or branches or of latticework covered with climbing plants. Behind this rather prosaic definition lies a wealth of meaning and rich variety. Cultures around the world have seen gardens as spaces for living in. An arbor or gazebo offers privacy, comfort and a place to become part of the natural world.
A range of designs for arbors and gates allows the creation of a personal garden getaway, giving a living form to the individual's philosophy of life and work. Arbors also serve a practical purpose, providing seating in an environment perfect for entertaining friends, reading, catching up on work, and meditation.
Arbor and gate designs cover a wide range: rustic, Mediterranean, contemporary, classical, Asian, formal and tropical. Like arbors and gazebos, gates can serve both practical and aesthetic purposes. They can be used to provide security and access, ensuring the safety of children and pets. They can be used as purely design features, to create a sense of mystery, of purpose, of moving forward, travel, or for the calming effect created by the vision of a gate covered with a flowering vine, with a convenient bench to sit on.
Features such as arbors and pergolas are sure to become a favorite location for children's games. Arbors and gates make garden living part of your lifestyle, and for those fortunate enough to share it.
The plants chosen to complement design features such as arbors, gazebos and gates are an integral feature of the design. Roses, vines and even weeping willows are classic arbor plants, creating a mixture of sunshine and shade that goes to the heart of garden living. Vines with sweetly scented flowers such as honeysuckle and sweet pea evoke nostalgia and serenity; jasmine in warmer climates and Virginia creeper with its fall display of color give the garden its sense of place. Wisteria is a perennial favorite. Or plants can be picked specially to attract butterflies or hummingbirds, or to provide food for the local fauna.
Incorporating arbors and gates into garden design thus offers the fullest scope for individual creativity while remaining firmly anchored in centuries of design tradition.