The Garden Guide

Book: The Principles of Landscape Gardening
Chapter: Chapter 1: Principles of Landscape Gardening

Design is essential in landscape-gardening

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1466. Design is quite as essential in landscape-gardening in the natural style as in the ancient style, though it is not so openly avowed. Modern landscape-gardening is, to a certain extent, an art of imitation; and as such, it does not aim at producing facsimiles of natural scenery, but scenery composed of natural objects combined according to the rules of art. Thus, the sculptor does not attempt colour, and the landscape painter does not raise the objects he represents in relief, but both imitate nature according to the rules of their respective arts. In the like manner, the imitator in a park or pleasure-ground, of a landscape composed of ground, wood, and water, does not produce facsimiles of the ground, wood, and water which he sees around him on every side; but of ground, wood, and water, arranged in imitation of nature, according to the principles of his particular art. To apply these principles to the formation of pleasure-ground scenery, nature, in any given locality, makes use of a certain number of trees found indigenous there; but the garden imitator of natural woods introduces other kinds of trees which are not indigenous to the country, and he arranges them so as to form picturesque groups, and to hide deformities in the landscape.