It isn’t as if outdoor pleasures are a mystery; watching the seasons change, connecting with nature, observing local wildlife – all of these are a given. At the deeper level, however, perhaps we enjoy our personal landscapes because they provide a complete sensory experience.
Incorporating Elemental Sound Into Gardens to Please the Senses
When you sit or work outside, you enjoy rich visual input: the feel of the breeze, sun, plants, etc., on your skin and you can smell the earth, plant matter, and blooms. You even have the ability to taste fresh fruits and vegetables from your garden. In a city- or urbanscape, though, there’s a good chance natural sounds have been overridden by man-made ones, and these tips can help to incorporate elemental sounds back into your garden.
Start with the floor. Concrete tiles or pavers create a relatively quiet walkway, while gravel can produce a very satisfying crunch. Would you like to replicate the sacred silence of the forest? Then line your pathways or sitting areas with a more soft and sound-absorbent material such as mulch.
Harness the wind. Add another dimension to a breezy day by planting ornamental grasses. Conifers can also add sound to airflow, as can bamboo. Your grasses will sparkle and whisper from a gentle to moderate breeze, while conifers can transform high-winds into the sound of crashing waves and bamboo yields a rattle-like noise. Wind chimes are another means of transforming wind into sound, from the fairly-like tinkle of delicate chimes to the low, gong-like resonance from larger versions.
Integrate water. Of course, water features are another way to add one of nature’s most soothing sounds. From small wall-mounted fountains to full-fledged waterfalls and streams, you can control the flow, drop and landing of the water on your property in order to create the sound you want. Installing ball valves on the outlet portion of a water pump or changing the placement of rocks in the pool’s bottom, will help you orchestrate the sound.
Contact Lifescape Colorado to design the landscape elements that create a multi-sensory and sound-rich experience in your garden.