A path can be used to connect areas of your garden together and combined with planting and design, divide up your space giving a new dimension.
Consider whether you want your path to be functional, the quickest way to get from A to B, or do you want to create movement through your garden and encourage the user to take their time to appreciate a particular view or specific plant along its route?
Once you have decided on how you want your path to be used, research the materials available to create it. A functional path needs to be wide enough for one person to walk comfortably and needs to be hard wearing as this path will get a lot of traffic. All paths need to be level and safe for use all year round and not slippery in the winter months.
If you want to create a more relaxed feeling to your path and encourage the user to stroll to their destination, then consider using a curve. This will have the added bonus of making even a small space feel bigger. Adding focal points along the route such as specimen planting or objects of interest will encourage the user to pause for a time to take in the sights, and by the use of careful planting, will deter them from cutting corners!
Add some seating along the way ideally positioned next to a fragrant plant or shrub, and if possible incorporate a table to create another entertaining area where you can watch the sun set with a glass of something cold and reflect on the day’s events!
Perhaps your garden is big enough to create two routes to the same destination? The second route might not be as obvious as to where the path will lead and give a sense of mystery and of exploring the unknown. This would be perfect for young children particularly if the route takes them around trees and shrubs with a few surprises along the way.
The materials you use for your path will have a visual impact on the whole design and will need to link to the house, the planting style and colours to ensure they complement one another. There are lots to choose from; paving, concrete, brick, setts, gravel, shale and self binding gravel the choice is yours!
Decide how you plan to edge your path to stop any loose material spilling into flowerbeds or onto the lawn. There are several products to choose from but a few you could consider using are a brick edging either used as a stretcher course or in a decorative way, perhaps a herringbone pattern.
Timber is cheaper than the metal edging product which is now available on the market. Both can be used to create straight lines or curves. Metal edging is more durable than wood and if used to edge your lawn makes mowing a cinch!
Until next time