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  • Writer's picturedananjaya polwattage

Home Garden – Introduction

Home Garden can be of many kinds to meet as many needs. One gardener may be interested mainly in beauty. Another gardener may be interested in relaxation. The third in growing flowers or crops for use in the home. But the really important thing about design is that it must be well suited to the purpose. Garden should be much more interesting if it cannot all be seen at once. Whether it has entirely different styles in each area or variations on the basic theme. It has to be explored, like the rooms of a house, the more fascinating it becomes. This principle applies to any size garden where it can be used as a valuable design technique. A small garden should hold more surprises and interests.

A study garden with special emphasis on the location of the house is the first step in the preparation of a plan to a home garden. With that consider the location of the main road and entrance to premises as well. It is important to select as much as the shorter distance between road and house for construct driveway or path in urban areas. After that determine whether the land is flat or sloppy and prepare terraces accordingly.

Introduction Continued…….

Then check how to arrange the drainage systems and decide the removal of existing vegetation from the garden. Lawn area, placement of flower troughs and paved areas are determined after observing the area for excavate and fill for a level the land.

Neatness and simplicity in front of the houses are very much desirable and it should not be overcrowded with planting. Either they remain without trees and shrubs. Planting may be formal or informal according to the client’s interest. Most of the back gardens in combination with lawn, children corner, pool and various kinds of plants and other features give comport to the owner.

Especially for a home garden some degree of privacy also desired. Generous boundaries planting with shrubs, screening trees with climbers are helpful in this regard. Professional garden designers invariably prepare accurate plans in order to show clients what is proposed and guide the workforce in construction and planting (Hellyer, 1993).

Styles of Home Garden

It includes two major styles as formal garden design and naturalistic planting design (informal garden design). The informal arrangement is less elaborate. Its beauty comes from the grouping of the components. The plants are arranged so that they blend with each other. The flower-beds and borders are less regular in shape, and size. Shrubs are found growing in harmony. A formal garden is a neat and ordered garden laid out in carefully planned geometric and symmetric lines. Lawns and hedges in a formal garden must always be kept neatly clipped. Trees, shrubs and other foliage are carefully arranged, shaped and continually trimmed (Dargan, 2004). Both formal styles and informal of the home garden are created.

Project Acceptation for a Home Garden

Customer satisfaction becomes a key factor for the continuous growth of a landscaping company. Procedures in initial landscape project acceptance will be briefly discussed. In this section as it is the most important and very first step among fundamentals of landscaping.

The company contacts the customers after obtaining a landscape order for a home garden to the showroom, Then arrange a meeting with the customer. During this meeting, both parties will get a chance to discuss and determine the best landscaping design, which will best suit the home and owner’s lifestyle.

Project Acceptance Continued…

Site analysis also will be done during this meeting that helps to identify available space and possibilities. Helpful information such as plant species, water features and any other related information which they feel should be included in the residential landscape design. Then the budget and plan of achieving the design will be discussed.

Bill of Quantity (B.O.Q) will clarify all costs and materials involved and the plan will be prepared by the company and provided to the customers. If the customer is happy with the quotation and the plan, the company will then begin to construct the landscape project.

Mainly two steps for the layout of a garden.

  1. Hard landscape works (Excavation, Filling, and Construction)

  2. Soft landscape works (Planting and Lawn)

Hard Landscape works

  • Preparation of land (Excavation and Filling).

  • Layout of the drainage system for rainwater.

  • The layout of the irrigation system.

  • The layout of the electric line for garden lights.

  • Preparation of flower troughs and terraces.

  • Construction of water features (Pond, Waterfall).

  • Paving works (parking, decks, sitting areas, paths).

  • Cleaning and leveling.

  • Fixing of ornaments, statues, garden lights, and water systems.

  • Manuring and laying out of topsoil layer over the entire garden.

In the very beginning, the ground of home should be prepared before the installation of any garden elements. It requires either the filling the plot with soil or excavation earth from the plot and leveling to facilitate drainage. Most of the time soil is bought from outside for the filling and sometimes excavation soil is used for filling low land as well. Such filled plots should be left at least for two weeks to install landscape elements.

The layout of drainage and irrigation systems

Once the land preparation and terraces are finished, drainage lines should be laid to remove excess rainwater from the garden. Available resources and topography of the land determine the type of drainage system. Sometimes PVC pipes are fixed along with the slope of land and tanks are prepared to facilitate the disposal of rainwater. According to customer requirements and budget, irrigation systems can be selected. Sprinkler system with popup heads and drip irrigation systems are popularly used in modern home gardening.

Garden lighting is used to extend the enjoyment time of evenings and night, security and add extra beauty for the garden. Most of the time spotlighting is used to enhance the beauty of a waterfall in the night. For that, electric lines are laid for the required places according to the initial plan.

After land preparation, terraces can be constructed if it is necessary. These terraces can be used to create a focal point such as summer hut, benches, etc. flower troughs should be prepared considering the plant’s light requirements. There are four types of flower troughs used in home gardening.

  • Natural Stone troughs.

  • Point granite troughs.

  • Tiled paved troughs.

  • Wooden finished concrete troughs

Water features offer more fascination and pleasure than any other garden features in a home garden. Miniature water features have become very popular in modern home garden design, especially among urban communities. Two materials such as natural stone and river boulders are used to construct waterfall in Lakmal garden service.

Outdoor tile paved pond

As the very first step, a pit should be prepared according to the required shape in the planned location according to the initial landscape site map. The bottom of the pit is leveled properly. After that, a concrete layer is applied to a thickness of 3 inches for waterproofing. Brick boundaries having a thickness of one brick, are built to demarcate the pond.

After that according to the initial design, a brick wall with three steps, having the overall height matching to the dimensions of the pond is built with two brick columns at edges along one bank of the pond. As this brick wall is constructed attaching to an existing garden boundary, to ensure the stability of this newly constructing brick wall, the existing wall is damaged and a new cement plaster was applied prior to building the new parallel wall.

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A Small square-shaped tank is prepared to enclose bottoms of two columns with a height of two feet for planting suitable foliage plants in order to add extra beauty to the pond design. After finishing that, create two planting troughs on top of the columns according to the design.

When creating a trough as the first step, the required shaped frame was built using steel. Then the bottom of the frame of the trough is covered using “chicken net” and side walls covered using ‘rising net’. Then cement grout is applied to the walls of the troughs and finished with applying a cement plaster.

After that, all the walls and boundaries built using bricks, are covered with cement plaster and leveled properly. Then tilling is started from the wall. For tilling the wall, special small rectangular shaped tiles (12”x 4″) are used. The cost of one of these tiles is Rs. 160-150. The surface of this tile is rough and had a layered shape. The surface properties help to increase the cascade effect of the water flow along the wall.

Out door tile paved ponds continued…

The tiling of the wall took comparatively a long time as it had to be done with careful attention. Colors of the tiles used had a slight variation from each other and a mixture of such colored tiles is used for tiling the middle step of the wall. Single colored such tiles are used for the lower and upper part of the wall.

After finishing the tiling of the wall, pond boundaries and two columns are tiled using a type of rough-surfaced tile having a greenish color (12”x 6”). After that, lower and upper planting boxes are tiled using a rough-surfaced tile having a brownish color (12”x 6”). The cost of this tile is Rs. 250-300. All tiles used by Lakmal Garden Service were imported from China.

The pond is filled and the water pump was installed in a tiled box specially created to place the pump hidden, besides the pond. This pump is a submersible pump. Pipes are fixed to bring water towards the top of the wall and then allowing a water flow alone the tiled wall back to the pond. Lower and upper planting boxes are filled with planting medium and Nephrolepis and Shefferlla are planted.

Water fall construct with river boulders

To create a waterfall, set a small irregular water pond on level ground. Remove the soil from the located area marking the designed shape of the pond and compress the excavated area to make sure a tight surface to lay concrete mixture. Three-inch thickness concrete mixture (metal: cement: sand-3:1:2.) is applied on top of the well-compressed soil surface.

Then cement and sand mixture (4:1) is applied to a well dry concrete layer. In the case of the water feature, sealant and cement plaster was applied top of the half-dried cement mixture for waterproofing. Then fill the pond with water and check the leakage of the pond.

Water feed through a submersible pump

Almost all these features use re-circulated water feed from a submersible pump powered by electricity. The pump is placed on the bottom of the pond and covered by using river boulders.

Granite stone is used to build a basic structure of the waterfall after that river boulder is applied according to the required design of the water feature by using a cement mixture. One cube of the river boulder is around Rs. 25000. The gaps were filled using a brown color cement mixture. Finally, excess cement and other materials in the waterfall were removed. Planting troughs were prepared in required places as previously discussed methods in the outdoor tiled waterfall. At last, planting media is filled into troughs suitable species were planted such as Nephrolepis exaltata.

The main objective of the paving with hard landscape materials is the protection of lawn and any other soft landscape materials from walking and parking vehicles. Lakmal Garden Service is able to create a variety of hard landscapes using interlocks, point granite, and pr-casting concrete slabs. Landscape paving technology has greatly advanced in recent years. Landscape pavers are now available in a variety of patterns and colors that can resemble natural stones and random cobblestones.

cement plaster according to the desired shape. Especially this paving used to cover unsightly areas in the garden.

Landscaping using hard landscaping materials

The beauty of the home garden has been greatly increased by the incorporation of hard landscape materials like benches (Plate 4.16), arches, status (Plate 4.15), garden lights, etc. into the design. Placements of garden furniture at appropriate places facilitate the functional usage of the family members. The choice of outdoor furniture largely depends on the basic design of the garden and the way in which the furniture is to be used. Durability, portability, collapsible and easy maintenance are important factors to take into consideration.

Garden lighting can be an important aspect of garden design. It can make an ordinary garden look spectacular, highlighting its best features and leaving the rest masked by darkness.

Arches and pergolas are the ultimate way of framing entrances and exits as well as linking different areas of the garden. They have been dressed with flowering creepers such as Bauhinia coccinea, Tunbergia grandiflora, Alamanda cathartica.

Soft landscape works in Home Garden

  1. Designing of plant layout.

  2. Laying of grass.

Designing of the Planting layout

A planting plan gives specific instructions, often for a contractor about how the soil is to be prepared, what species are to be planted, what size and spacing are to be used and what maintenance operations are to be carried out under the contract. Owners of private gardens may also use planting plans, not for contractual purposes, as an aid to thinking about a design and as a record of what has been planted. After finishing construction works, required plants are incorporated into the home gardens with suitable potting media (topsoil: cow dung: coir dust: sand 4:2:1:1).

Establishment of Lawn in a Home Garden (Turfing)

The lawn is one of the most important elements in the home garden, attractive at all times and providing pleasant surroundings for houses, trees, shrubs, and flowers. The size of the lawn will depend very much on the availability of space, where the shape should be such that it creates an attractive appearance.

To establish the lawn, the turfing method is commonly practiced. Sods brought from outside suppliers and prepare in the nursery. They included many weeds such as Atora, Commelina diffusa, Babila. and size also varies. Though the sods bring many other weeds to the home garden, a nice lawn can be obtained after several lawn maintenance spells.

Turfing Continued…..

The first step island preparation for lawn establishment. After removing rabbles, pebbles, weeds and roots coir dust is laid over the ground. Through the incorporation of a coir dust layer on to soil at this stage would facilitate the better establishment of turf and apply fertilizer to the coir dust layer.

Then sods are applied to the coir dust layer. These sods are wet thoroughly, turf is compressed using the manual plate compactor to obtain a leveled turf. Recommended grass species for the establishment of lawn are Axonopus and Zoysia. However deviations in composition of grass. and the size of sods is common when sods are brought from outside.

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