FENG SHUI GARDENS
For more tips on using Feng Shui to turn your back yard into a garden and your garden into a sanctuary see the article Gardens for the Soul.
To enhance your experience of your home and garden, contact us to arrange a tailored consultation that is specific to your property, your family and lifestyle.
Spirit in the Home: Case Study
Channel 7's Ground Force: Garden Design at Ocean Grove
Feng Shui and Gardens
Gardens connect us with nature and the earth, awaken our senses, remind us of the changing cycles of the seasons, enliven the body, provide opportunities for peace and contemplation, and enable experiences of beauty and reverence in every day life. It can be said that a garden is a reflection of the soul, so tend both with love and reverence. Applied to a garden Feng Shui can deepen one's experience of peace, balance and beauty.
Of course every site is different and at some stage you may want to call in an experienced Feng Shui practitioner to help you get your garden feeling and looking wonderful. In the meantime however, here are some general points we took into account to enhance Nicole and Joel's garden at Ocean Grove. You may find these useful too.
The Ground Force Project at Ocean Grove: Nicole and Joel's Place
This garden has a healthy source of vibrant life force from the sea, fresh air, rolling hills and the abundant wildlife. Views to the sea are particularly uplifting and are a constant inspiration for those who live here. Respecting the character of the local environment and Nicole and Joel's love for the surf and things oriental we included themes of the sea and wildlife and Bali in this garden design.
Here are some of the things we did to create a balanced and beautiful garden:
Clutter and Neglect
First we looked to fix all things that were broken, and removed any telltale clutter and mess. At Ocean Grove this included fixing the gate so that it opened easily, cleaning up cobwebs and autumn leaves, removing dead or unhealthy plants and rocks, and cleaning the windows to enhance views into the garden.
A key feature of this property is that it slopes at the rear, and particularly towards the rear right corner (sector of love and partnership). This can bring instability to the occupants.
- build up strength and stability at the rear by repairing the fence and planting a row of bamboo in flowing shapes that suggest mountains
- avoid water flowing off or past the property as this is draining money and energy away; symbolically contain water in a pond
The flimsy fence was fixed as it represents weak boundaries and vulnerability to external forces.
The timber deck and balustrades, overhanging roof beams and excessive use of blue and green tend to create an imbalance of wood energy. Too much wood can manifest as frustration, anger and conflict. Balance wood by:
- adding some fire in the form of red, orange and purple patterns painted on the deck, a stove in the corner of the deck, red flowers and plant pots
- avoiding sharp, spiky or blade-like leaves round leaves are preferred
- avoiding palms in and around the house
The straight and square lines created by the deck, balustrades, path and building cause energy to move too fast, and are rather sharp and hard.
- introduce curving flowing shapes and lines, such as round plant tubs, painted spiralling patterns, climbing vines wrapped around the verandah posts, a round rather than square table on the deck
- replace the straight path with a curving path of stones that meanders like a river from the circular shower through the garden to a round pool
One of the adjoining houses at the rear of the block is angled to Joel and Nicole's home sending cutting Qi from the sharp corner of the house into their backyard. This is subtly threatening and unfriendly. The exposed red brick wall of the neighbour's house also intrudes into the garden.
- reduce the cutting effect of the neighbour's corner, and the intrusive impact of the red brick wall, by planting thick shrubs in front that soften the sharp corner and disguise the wall
Beams and Posts
On the verandah the overhead beams can be oppressive and divisive, and the cutting edges of posts are a bit uncomfortable to sit next to.
- paint overhead beams white to lighten their effect, round off sharp edges of beams and posts, twine creepers around posts and beams, place upward-growing plants under beams, or a standing light that shines upwards to lift Qi
Here are some of symbols we incorporated into the garden design:
- Stove - fire
- Pond of water - container of Qi/wealth, also attracts life force through attracting birds
- Bamboo - youthfulness yet also graceful aging and longevity, connects heaven and earth, doesn't break but is flexible in strong winds - remains flexible yet grounded. Keep away from the house as bamboo also harbours yin spirits.
- Lotus - endurance, divine love - two for partnership? - a touch of the spiritual
- Water dragon - connects the water and the land, Australian/oriental (Indonesia), strength and protection, masculine force
- Phoenix - red bird, the feminine principle, balances with the dragon - masculine principle and symbol of strength and protection
- Spiral patterns to represent the flow of Qi that culminates in a pool, and cycles of change.
- Circle - oneness, the Tao (pronounced dow), infinity, heaven
- Square - earth, stability
Feng Shui seeks to create a harmony between person and place, appropriate to the needs and personalities and lifestyles of the occupants, and the qualities of the surroundings. What may be a harmonious arrangement for one home could be quite different for another.
To enhance your experience of your home and garden contact Spirit of Design to arrange a tailored consultation that is specific to your property, your family and lifestyle.
See more on Feng Shui and gardens in Gardens for the Soul.