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Patterns in Nature for Garden Design

Patterns in Nature for Garden Design

Patterns in Nature for Garden Design

Natural patterns include symmetries, spirals, meanders, cracks, fissures, tessellations, waves and foams. Mathematics, physics and chemistry can explain patterns in nature at different levels. Today, let’s look at spirals as a starting point.

Eastwoodhill – The National Aboretum of New Zealand uses the Fibonacci spiral within their grounds for visitor interaction.

As it does in the world of maths, the Fibonacci sequence can be seen throughout nature in seeds, pine cones, petals, fruit and vegetables, leaves and fronds, shells and on and on. It crops up everywhere in life and is a beautiful thing to replicate in garden design.

Fractals in a Nautilus shell – image copyright sailor_smb

There are many spirals in nature that we can use to inspire our garden design; in snails, shells, plants, tornados, cobwebs, even spiral galaxies. The fractals in a Nautilus shell are beautiful and could be taken as a starting point to create a simple spiral herb bed for the kitchen garden or for an entire garden design.

Herb spiral – image copyright phillypermaculture

In 2016, The Winton Beauty of Mathematics Garden won Silver Gilt at RHS Chelsea Flower Show. Nick Bailey the designer, uses inspiration from the beauty of mathematical algorithms, which underpin all plants, growth and life. It is a layered, textured feast for the eyes and senses.

The Winton Beauty of Mathematics Garden. Design: Nick Bailey. Photograph copyright Jonathan Buckley

Hard and soft landscaping can be used to create patterns from nature in garden design. The way a pathway curves, how a seating area connects with other parts of the garden, planting schemes, raised beds, the use of sculpture, a parterre, steps, hedging or topiary, a focal point beyond the garden seen through other forms, flowing or still water in ponds, streams or channels can all be used to great effect.

If you’d like us to create a design for your garden using patterns from nature give us a call for a free quote!

The spiral parterre at Hotel Carnavalet, Paris. Image copyright tomatoesfromcanada