An honest garden designer will frequently tell you that it is easier to design a garden for someone else than for yourself. Good judgment with regard to design principles is easily clouded by emotional attachment to heirloom plants or collected art. If you are an out-of-control collector, a good garden designer could be your best friend.
If the thought of hiring a garden designer to brutally tame your collection scares you, and buying the vacant lot next door for expansion isn’t a possibility, there are some design principles you can employ to test the waters. Depending on what you collect, some of these principles will apply more specifically to your garden than others.
Almost every garden has multiple sight lines; the entire garden is not usually visible from any one vantage point. The collector can use this to his or her advantage with regard to art placement. A well-placed shrub, a screen, a wall or even a house corner can create a new opportunity for siting art. Placing art this way adds a new dimension of depth and discovery to a space. Depending on size and how much attention each piece commands, try to limit your art to one to three pieces per sight line. That is enough.
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