Let’s start by saying that modern landscaping doesn’t mix very well with other landscaping styles. It doesn’t blend well at all, for example, with romantic, expressionist styles.
Since modern is sleek and elegant, it mixes well only with styles that share these qualities. So either you go modern all the way, or you try to find some elements that can match your chosen landscaping style. If you choose the latter, be careful. Once again, it is not an easy match.
- Favor bushes that grow slowly and that can be trimmed. Certain varieties of Boxwood, Azaleas and Yews are very good for this purpose.
- Generally speaking, you should stay away from bunches of trees and bushes that grow fast and that cannot be trimmed.
- Trim those trees and bushes that can be trimmed regularly. A contemporary garden is a neat garden.
- Trees that cannot be trimmed should be chosen for their special shapes and architectural quality and they should be placed by themselves, like sculptures in an exhibition hall.
- You can have a lawn, of course, but you should also have other materials on the ground. In the front yard, it can be stone paths. In the backyard, it can be a patio and some paths made of stone or wood. Granite is a good choice. If you choose slate, the overall surface should be uniform and neat. Pebbles can also be used. In the case of wood, oiled wood is not a bad idea. Stay away from rough looking wood floors.
- Modern landscaping is not exuberant landscaping. Be conservative in your choice of shapes and colors.
- Flower beds are less common in modern gardens. If you do want a flower bed, be conservative in your selection of flowers. Choose flowers that keep a neat shape and limit the number of colors.
- In the backyard, envision your design as a sort of exterior living room or interior garden. Imagine a floor (a large patio with paths going through the garden), walls (the walls of the neighboring houses, concrete walls that you build around your garden, or lattice walls), a roof (a pergola or an awning), lighting (integrated electric lighting and candles) and some furniture.
- For the furniture, chose sleek designs. Rattan or and water resistant woods are good. Light colored pillows are often a good choice.
- An in ground pool, a water garden or a fountain is always nice in a modern garden.
- And how about a nice gas fireplace? It would have to be a contemporary one, made of polished granite, for instance.
- Use pots for some of your plants. Choose modern pots, preferably made of polished materials, such as metal or stone. Ornate vases and terracotta pots are not a good choice here.
- Generally speaking, prefer square and sleek objects over round and rough ones.
In a nutshell, modern landscaping could be described more cold and sophisticated than romantic and exuberant. On the other hand, they can be very nice looking and comfortable. But bear in mind they may require more maintenance to keep their neat and perfectly trimmed look.
Have you considered all the possibilities? There are some landscaping ideas you may not have thought of.