The pandemic has not only shaped the way we use our homes and gardens but how we want to feel within these spaces. The expectation now is that are gardens are going to create not only the sense of calm and reflection but also a feeling of security too. The expectation is that are homes and gardens should now provide us with both of these and the trends for 2022 have seen this in abundance and the readiness for the homeowner to respond to create this feeling of calm and wellbeing. I have spoken to all five of our Garden designers on the nursery this week to get a real snapshot of how this is impacting on the designs they are putting together, their trends that they are talking to their clients about and the ones that are being implemented through the installations we are putting together.
One of the gardens that automatically spring to mind when we talk about wellbeing is the Japanese Zen garden and there is no doubt that this is influencing gardens in some ways, the less fussy gardens of minimal designs with fewer plant varieties is being taken but given a touch of modernism too, creating space and form and lots of clean lines. Strong lines of stone and retaining walls that look like they have been carved out of the landscape to reveal simple planting, while it has the elements of a Japanese Garden there is also a real feeling of a garden of the Adriatic that you may have been following from Monty Don’s new series. Lots of planting of shades of green but very little other colours too, the change is created with textures rather than colour. A mixture of clipped and loose foliages but also adding large leafy plants and different foliage styles.
Gardens that can be used throughout the years also a huge trees, our gardens need to work very hard for us, creating entertaining spaces for us and the few people that we choose to bring into our special spaces. The need for planting that covers all four seasons is a necessity. Lighting and pots are a must, still bringing that sense of additional living space and the natural tones of raw surfaces with stronger background colours, exactly as we would do inside too.
Timber is a strong element in our gardens this year, from timber boardwalks through to a much more solid outdoor furniture is all seen as key trends. Likewise the timber look from outdoor tiles and board form concrete giving the look of timber that is textural and tactile.
Brass is also a key element from lights through to small details in the garden, art forms that create a warmth to the garden, the lighting creating that warm glow. We have seen this is lots of forms and for two gardens we are currently working on that we have commissioned some simple pieces that bring a real warmth to the gardens and they are going to look just amazing.
Whilst we have been talking up to now about neutrals there are most definitely stringer colours being used too in gardens, not in too big a detail but creating backdrops that add individuality to a garden. The similar shares that we are using inside are being seen in the garden; shades of greens, some darker blues and this years Pantone colour of the year Very Peri and wonderfully blue periwinkle kind of shade that looks beautiful with shades of blue greys and lavenders planted in front of it, Think one darker wall with Olive trees, succulents , grasses and nepeta planted.
Along with this colour we are still seeing the really dark moodier charred wood and very dark stains for the much needed office rooms and covered seating and dining areas and the other big trend, the outdoor kitchen. These outdoor rooms are as well as office spaces seem to be doubling up as exercise spaces and yoga rooms. I have indeed found a space like this myself timber outdoor room clad in almost black stained timber that houses my exercise bike (I’m a wannabe Peleton user so I’ve got a more cost effective alternative) and yoga mat along with my sons weights bench. Its lovely space that opens up in the warmer months.
Our Outdoor kitchens, garden furniture and gardens as a while need to work so much harder for us as we become more reliant on these spaces for our recreational needs as well as our entertaining requirements. Creating that secure, safe additional space in the open air that also gives us privacy and a sense of wellbeing, a good design is a good idea and is obviously why garden designers around the country are extremely busy.