By Kathy Van Mullekom
“Remember round and low is yin and high and straight is yang,” says Bonnie. “Finding balance in your garden creates balance in your life.”
5. Plan for proportion. You’ve probably seen too many shrubs and trees on too little land and just the opposite — too much land and too few plantings. A good rule of thumb is the old rule of 3 — keep the house to one-third, if you can, and the property to two-thirds.
“This is not always possible, so then you must artfully plant trees that will not dwarf the home in 5-10 years or look too small for the life of the house,” says Bonnie.
“Another rule of thumb is to plant small/open/multi trunk trees like birches and Japanese maples within 15-20 feet of the front of the home and never directly in front of the door. In the feng shui world, this translates to keeping good energy from coming in and blocking our view of the world.”
Also, shrubbery planted close to the house should only reach the base of the window frame—never going beyond and obliterating the view inside or outside. In the world of feng shui, you take away good energy coming in from the outside and stifling the energy inside.
6. To curve or not curve. Curves slow your steps and eyes (yin) while straight lines speed your energy (yang), causing you to look beyond instead of enjoying where you are. Small spaces need straight lines because curves take up more room and could be difficult to navigate (never good feng shui). If you have a large property for gardening, think curves—curving/rounded plant/flower/shrubbery groups. Curving, rounded plants (yin) also soften the geometric angles (yang) of your home.
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