Guest Author - Carol M. Olmstead
Jump start the geraniums and dial up the dahlias - it’s time to start using Feng Shui to create harmony in your garden. Whether the garden view you see from your home is a lush paradise or a simple hanging plant, you can create Feng Shui garden harmony by using the right color, shape, and decorations in the right location. In Feng Shui, colors and shapes are called the Five Elements, and when you place these Elements in the most auspicious locations you can transform any garden space into a tranquil oasis. The Five Elements are: Fire, Earth, Metal, Water, and Wood.
The words “Feng Shui” mean wind and water and represent the gentle flow and curve of the natural world around you. That means the shapes you choose for your garden also affect what flows into your life, especially harmony. When you plant your garden in Feng Shui colors and shapes, you activate the specific energy of each. For example, flowers and garden ornaments in reds, oranges, and yellows increase your active energy, while those in tones of blues and purples can calm you.
The Feng Shui bagua (pronounced bag wha), or mapping chart, will help you decide where to place each color. You can download a bagua chart from my website, www.FengShuiForRealLife.com, then hold the bagua in front of you when you look into your garden from its main entrance. Plant and decorate your garden to match the colors and shapes recommended for each area. For example, in the Wealth area (upper left hand corner of your garden), grow red geraniums, purple salvia, or other plants with hot colors or triangular shapes to increase your abundance and prosperity. Plant fruit trees in this area and your wealth will be “fruitful.”
Here are some specific suggestions for adding the shapes and colors to your garden to activate specific attributes:
Shape - Triangle
Colors - Red, orange, purple
Attribute - Encourage happiness and reduce sadness
Examples - Iris, calla lily, birch trees, and spruce trees
Shape - Square
Colors - Yellow
Attribute - Encourage stability, security, grounding
Examples - Poppy, rose, boxwood, juniper
Shape - Round
Colors -White, pastel
Attribute - Encourage control, acceptance, enlightenment
Examples - Lavender, hydrangea, globe thistle
Shape - Curved
Colors - Blue
Attribute - Encourage relaxation, optimism, peace of mind
Examples - Wisteria, hosta, butterfly bush
Shape - Vertical
Colors - Green
Attribute - Encourage growth, change, dreams
Examples - Trees and tall plants
Here are some additional ways you can add a bit of pizzazz to your garden as you activate your Feng Shui garden harmony --
Fire Element: Plant red, orange, and purple flowers, then add an outdoor fire pit and lanterns.
Earth Element: Plant yellow flowers, and arrange rocks and clay pots around them.
Metal Element: Plant white flowers and decorate your garden with metal sculptures and wind chimes.
Water Element: Plant blue and purple flowers, and also create a pond or add a fountain, or bird bath.
Wood Element: Plant green shrubs and trees, then place wooden benches, chairs, or a trellis in your backyard.
If you live in an apartment or condo, you can still have a garden on your balcony or patio. Even though the space is small, use the bagua to map out your outdoor space, then decorate accordingly with flowers, plants, and garden ornaments.
Remember to keep your Feng Shui garden harmony fresh, natural, and flowing. Deadhead flowers when they fade, but avoid over-pruning your trees and shrubs into tight shapes.
Whether you can walk through your garden or just to gaze at it through your windows, a little Feng Shui goes a long way.
Click here to download a copy of the Feng Shui bagua to help determine where to place colors and shapes in your garden.
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