Landscapes and Garden Settings
The French Formal Garden:
Think of French Gardens and you immediately think of beautiful, intricate Knot Gardens or long avenues of trees interspaced with large ponds and fountains. A French Garden, also called Jardin à la Française, is a very formal, very ordered gardening style with lots of straight lines and symmetry.
Below is a slide show of French Formal Gardens we created. Such gardens can be designed on a smaller scale for the homeowner who wants to bring a taste of France to their residence.
• The focus of the garden tends to be the house, and paths radiate out of this creating long axial views.
• A geometric plan is used, and symmetry is very important. A central axis leads away perpendicular to the house.
• Paths tend to be gravel and edged with clipped hedges and topiary laid out in symmetrical patterns.
• Water is often a key feature of French Gardens, and lots of round pools and long rectangles of water are incorporated, with the reflection of the water adding to the symmetry and tranquillity of the scene. Fountains and cascades are also very common feature.
• Close to the house, planting is kept low (no trees) and tends to consist of flower beds.
• Farther from the house, paths are often edged with trees, which are always planted in straight lines adding perspective and reinforcing the symmetry of the garden.
• Statuaries are often used in French Gardens.
KEY FEATURES OF A FRENCH GARDEN