bring the romance of french country gardens to your florida backyard
The marriage of colorful cottage-style gardens with formal design, clipped hedges and stone hardscapes inspired the 19th-century French impressionists. This romantic design style can look just as beautiful in your 21st-century yard. French-country gardens blend beautiful structural elements with informal, almost cottage-style planting beds.
French gardens are known for their topiaries, boxwoods and large trimmed hedges. Boxwoods or other shrubbery define the spaces and keep edges neat and tidy. Statues, fountains, or pools often stand as a focal point. A fountain grounds this Gainesville garden with formal elements being repeated by both spiral topiary and the three large ‘Mary Nell’ hollies in the background.
French gardens use strong boundaries to outline colorful beds of blooming color and even foliage accents. Like something straight out of a Monet painting, ‘Paint Box’ beds display a powerful contrast between neatly edged borders and the profusion of plants that tumble out of them. Large drifts of color are encouraged for a natural effect.
Start your very own cutting flower garden—and there’ll be no shortage of hand-tied backyard bouquets this season. Don’t forget to plant Hydrangeas and include both the panicle types for full sun and the classic hortensias for shady borders. No French garden seems complete without them.
Add fragrance with old garden roses
Fill your garden with sweet scents and beautiful blooms with this amazing rose. ‘Mrs. B.R. Cant’ (pictured below) has pink, cabbage-like blooms spring through fall on a nicely mounding five foot shrub. Huge, softly-scented blooms belie the fact that this is one of the easiest care roses for Florida, as it requires no spraying or chemicals.