A garden is a planned space, usually outdoors, set aside for the
display, cultivation and enjoyment of plants and other forms of
nature. The garden can incorporate both natural and man-made
materials. The most common form today is known as a residential
garden, but the term garden has traditionally been a more general one.
Zoos, which display wild animals in simulated natural habitats, were
formerly called zoological gardens. Western gardens are almost
universally based on plants, with garden often signifying a shortened
form of botanical garden.
Some traditional types of eastern gardens, such as Zen gardens, use
plants sparsely or not at all. Xeriscape gardens use local native
plants that do not require irrigation or extensive use of other
resources while still providing the benefits of a garden environment.
Gardens may exhibit structural enhancements, sometimes called follies,
including water features such as fountains, ponds (with or without
fish), waterfalls or creeks, dry creek beds, statuary, arbors,
trellises and more.
Some gardens are for ornamental purposes only, while some gardens also
produce food crops, sometimes in separate areas, or sometimes
intermixed with the ornamental plants. Food-producing gardens are
distinguished from farms by their smaller scale, more labor-intensive
methods, and their purpose (enjoyment of a hobby rather than produce
Flower gardens combine plants of different heights, colors,
textures, and fragrances to create interest and delight the senses.
Gardening is the activity of growing and maintaining the garden. This
work is done by an amateur or professional gardener. A gardener might
also work in a non-garden setting, such as a park, a roadside
embankment, or other public space.
Landscape architecture is a related
professional activity with landscape architects tending to specialise
in design for public and corporate clients.
3 Elements of a garden
4 Uses for the garden space
5 Types of gardens
6 Environmental impacts of gardens
7 Watering gardens
Wildlife in gardens
Climate change and gardens
10 In religion, art, and literature
11 Other similar spaces
12 See also
14 External links
Nicosia municipal gardens, Cyprus
The etymology of the word gardening refers to enclosure: it is from
Middle English gardin, from Anglo-French gardin, jardin, of Germanic
origin; akin to Old High German gard, gart, an enclosure or compound,
as in Stuttgart. See
Grad (Slavic settlement)
Grad (Slavic settlement) for more complete
etymology. The words yard, court, and Latin hortus (meaning
"garden," hence horticulture and orchard), are cognates—all
referring to an enclosed space.
The term "garden" in
British English refers to a small enclosed area
of land, usually adjoining a building. This would be referred to as
a yard in American English.
Garden design is the creation of plans for the layout and planting of
gardens and landscapes. Gardens may be designed by garden owners
themselves, or by professionals. Professional garden designers tend to
be trained in principles of design and horticulture, and have a
knowledge and experience of using plants. Some professional garden
designers are also landscape architects, a more formal level of
training that usually requires an advanced degree and often a state
Elements of garden design include the layout of hard landscape, such
as paths, rockeries, walls, water features, sitting areas and decking,
as well as the plants themselves, with consideration for their
horticultural requirements, their season-to-season appearance,
lifespan, growth habit, size, speed of growth, and combinations with
other plants and landscape features. Consideration is also given to
the maintenance needs of the garden, including the time or funds
available for regular maintenance, which can affect the choices of
plants regarding speed of growth, spreading or self-seeding of the
plants, whether annual or perennial, and bloom-time, and many other
Garden design can be roughly divided into two groups,
formal and naturalistic gardens.
The most important consideration in any garden design is, how the
garden will be used, followed closely by the desired stylistic genres,
and the way the garden space will connect to the home or other
structures in the surrounding areas. All of these considerations are
subject to the limitations of the budget. Budget limitations can be
addressed by a simpler garden style with fewer plants and less costly
hardscape materials, seeds rather than sod for lawns, and plants that
grow quickly; alternatively, garden owners may choose to create their
garden over time, area by area.
Example of a garden attached to a place of worship: the cloister of
the Abbey of Monreale, Sicily, Italy
Garden of Butchart Gardens, Victoria, British
Gardens of Versailles
Gardens of Versailles (France)
The back garden of the
Umaid Bhawan Palace
Umaid Bhawan Palace in Jodhpur, India
Tropical garden in the Faculty of Science, National University of
Singapore in Singapore
Flower-bed with the date in Lignano Sabbiadoro, Italy
Gardens at Colonial Williamsburg, Williamsburg, Virginia, feature many
heirloom varieties of plants.
Garden in Osaka,
Japan - an
example of a zen garden.
Elements of a garden
Garden at the centre of intersection in Shanghai.
Naturalistic design of a
Chinese garden incorporated into the
landscape, including a pavilion
Garden with Fountains, Villa d'Este, Italy.
Most gardens consist of a mix of natural and constructed elements,
although even very 'natural' gardens are always an inherently
artificial creation. Natural elements present in a garden principally
comprise flora (such as trees and weeds), fauna (such as arthropods
and birds), soil, water, air and light. Constructed elements include
paths, patios, decking, sculptures, drainage systems, lights and
buildings (such as sheds, gazebos, pergolas and follies), but also
living constructions such as flower beds, ponds and lawns.
Uses for the garden space
Partial view from the
Botanical Garden of Curitiba
Botanical Garden of Curitiba (Southern Brazil):
parterres, flowers, fountains, sculptures, greenhouses and tracks
composes the place used for recreation and to study and protect the
A garden can have aesthetic, functional, and recreational uses:
Cooperation with nature
Observation of nature
Bird- and insect-watching
Reflection on the changing seasons
Family dinners on the terrace
Children playing in the garden
Reading and relaxing in the hammock
Maintaining the flowerbeds
Pottering in the shed
Cottaging in the bushes
Basking in warm sunshine
Escaping oppressive sunlight and heat
Growing useful produce
Flowers to cut and bring inside for indoor beauty
Fresh herbs and vegetables for cooking
Types of gardens
A typical Italian garden at Villa Garzoni, near Pistoia
Checkered garden in Tours, France
Zen garden, Ryōan-ji
French formal garden
French formal garden in the Loire Valley
Bristol Zoo, England
Castelo Branco, Portugal
Italian gardens of El Escorial, Spain
An ornamental garden in the Auburn Botanical Gardens, Sydney,
Gardens may feature a particular plant or plant type(s);
Gardens may feature a particular style or aesthetic:
English landscape garden
Gardens of the French Renaissance
French formal garden
French landscape garden
Italian Renaissance garden
Types of garden:
Cold frame garden
Raised bed gardening
Square foot garden
Environmental impacts of gardens
Gardeners may cause environmental damage by the way they garden, or
they may enhance their local environment. Damage by gardeners can
include direct destruction of natural habitats when houses and gardens
are created; indirect habitat destruction and damage to provide garden
materials such as peat, rock for rock gardens, and by the use of
tapwater to irrigate gardens; the death of living beings in the garden
itself, such as the killing not only of slugs and snails but also
their predators such as hedgehogs and song thrushes by metaldehyde
slug killer; the death of living beings outside the garden, such as
local species extinction by indiscriminate plant collectors; and
climate change caused by greenhouse gases produced by gardening.
Some gardeners manage their gardens without using any water from
outside the garden, and therefore do not deprive wetland habitats of
the water they need to survive. Examples in Britain include Ventnor
Garden on the Isle of Wight, and parts of Beth Chatto's garden
in Essex, Sticky Wicket garden in Dorset, and the Royal Horticultural
Society's gardens at Harlow Carr and Hyde Hall. Rain gardens absorb
rainfall falling onto nearby hard surfaces, rather than sending it
into stormwater drains. For irrigation, see rainwater, sprinkler
system, drip irrigation, tap water, greywater, hand pump and watering
Wildlife in gardens
Chris Baines's classic book 'How to make a wildlife garden' was
first published in 1985, and is still a good source of advice on how
to create and manage a wildlife garden.
Climate change and gardens
Climate change will have many impacts on gardens, most of them
negative, and these are detailed in '
Gardening in the Global
Greenhouse' by Richard Bisgrove and Paul Hadley. Gardens also
contribute to climate change.
Greenhouse gases can be produced by
gardeners in many ways. The three main greenhouse gases are carbon
dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide. Gardeners produce carbon dioxide
directly by overcultivating soil and destroying soil carbon, by
burning garden 'waste' on bonfires, by using power tools which burn
fossil fuel or use electricity generated by fossil fuels, and by using
peat. Gardeners produce methane by compacting the soil and making it
anaerobic, and by allowing their compost heaps to become compacted and
anaerobic. Gardeners produce nitrous oxide by applying excess nitrogen
fertiliser when plants are not actively growing so that the nitrogen
in the fertiliser is converted by soil bacteria to nitrous oxide.
Gardeners can help to prevent climate change in many ways, including
the use of trees, shrubs, ground cover plants and other perennial
plants in their gardens, turning garden 'waste' into soil organic
matter instead of burning it, keeping soil and compost heaps aerated,
avoiding peat, switching from power tools to hand tools or changing
their garden design so that power tools are not needed, and using
nitrogen-fixing plants instead of nitrogen fertiliser.
In religion, art, and literature
Great Maytham Hall
Great Maytham Hall Garden, Kent, England, inspiration for Frances
Hodgson Burnett's The Secret Garden
Garden of Eden
Romance of the Rose
Nathaniel Hawthorne's short-story "Rappaccini's Daughter"
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's opera La finta giardiniera
Frances Hodgson Burnett's The Secret Garden
Elizabeth von Arnim's novels
Elizabeth and Her German Garden and
John Steinbeck's short-story The Chrysanthemums
John Berendt's novel Midnight in the
Garden of Good and Evil
In Daphne du Maurier's novel Rebecca the unnamed narrator discovers
that her husband loves his house and garden at Manderley so much that
he murdered his first wife, Rebecca, when she told him she was
pregnant with somebody else's child and that the child would inherit
Other similar spaces
Other outdoor spaces that are similar to gardens include:
A landscape is an outdoor space of a larger scale, natural or
designed, usually unenclosed and considered from a distance.
A park is a planned outdoor space, usually enclosed ('imparked') and
of a larger size. Public parks are for public use.
An arboretum is a planned outdoor space, usually large, for the
display and study of trees.
A farm or orchard is for the production of food stuff.
A botanical garden is a type of garden where plants are grown both for
scientific purposes and for the enjoyment and education of visitors.
A zoological garden, or zoo for short, is a place where wild animals
are cared for and exhibited to the public.
Kindergarten is a preschool educational institution for children and
in the very sense of the word should have access or be part of a
Männergarten is a temporary day-care and activities space for men
in German-speaking countries while their wives or girlfriends go
shopping. Historically, the expression has also been used for
gender-specific sections in lunatic asylums, monasteries and
Around the World in 80 Gardens
Heritage Gardens in Australia
History of gardening
List of botanical gardens
List of companion plants
List of gardens
National Public Gardens Day
Paradise, originally from an Iranian word meaning "enclosed," related
Garden of Eden
Verde Pulgar, a software application that assists with gardening
Garden TV series
Garden history : philosophy and design, 2000 BC--2000 AD, Tom
Turner. New York: Spon Press, 2005. ISBN 0-415-31748-7
^ The earth knows my name : food, culture, and sustainability in
the gardens of ethnic Americans, Patricia Klindienst. Boston: Beacon
Press, c2006. ISBN 0-8070-8562-6
^ "Etymology of the modern word gardin". Merriam Webster.
^ "Etymology of words referring to enclosures, probably from a
Sanskrit stem. In German, for example, Stuttgart. The word is generic
for compounds and walled cities, as in Stalingrad, and the Russian
word for city, gorod. Gird and girdle are also related".
Yourdictionary.com. Archived from the original on 2010-02-13.
^ The Compact Oxford English Dictionary
^ Chen, Gang (2010). Planting design illustrated (2nd ed.). Outskirts
Press, Inc. p. 3. ISBN 978-1-4327-4197-6.
^ Dunnett and Clayden, Nigel and Andy (2007). Rain Gardens: Managing
Water Sustainably in the
Garden and Designed Landscape. Portland,
Oregon, USA: Timber Press. ISBN 978-0881928266.
^ Baines, Chris (2000). How to make a wildlife garden. London: Frances
Lincoln. ISBN 978-0711217119.
^ Bisgrove and Hadley, Richard and Paul (2002).
Gardening in the
Global Greenhouse: The impacts of climate change on gardens in the UK.
Oxford: UK Climate Impacts Programme.
^ Ingram, Vince-Prue, and Gregory (editors), David S., Daphne, and
Peter J. (2008). Science and the Garden: The scientific basis of
horticultural practice. Oxford: Blackwell.
ISBN 9781405160636. CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list
(link) CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
^ See: Jakob Fischel, Prag's K. K. Irrenanstalt und ihr Wirken seit
ihrem Entstehen bis incl. 1850. Erlangen: Enke, 1853,
OCLC 14844310 (in German)
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