Most flower gardens are designed in the traditions of established gardens, such as the Old World feel of a Tuscan garden, or the rigid structure that comes from a formal garden.
In contrast, modern garden design methods tend to incorporate the more organic shapes of informal garden elements and highlight distinctiveness rather than conforming to older designs.
A modern garden design is a freeform garden design.
But that doesn't mean you should just start planting forgo planning your garden, just because the concepts of modern garden design are often more open to individuality than older designs. There are still elements to consider when incorporating a modern garden design plan.
What Do You Want
When starting your modern garden design, you will want to settle on what you want to accomplish with your garden. Do you want something small that’s easy to care for, or something that highlights another part of your yard, such as a swimming pool or a patio? Or are you looking for the interplay of greenery with brightly colored flowers, creating a landscape that’s pleasing to the eye and relaxing when you view it? Modern gardens can be big or small, limited only by your imagination and the space you have to work with.
Plan How Elements Interact
When you work on your modern garden design, think ahead about how elements of your garden, both plants and inorganic elements, fit together. Even a free-form garden is like a puzzle to be put together. Perhaps you want to plant on either side of the walkway to your home, giving it the appearance of a path through a field of wildflowers. In this case, your modern garden design should plan out the flowers you want to plant and perhaps some grassy plants to create the effect you want.
Try Something Different
For many people, gardens bring pictures of lush landscapes to mind, but modern garden design can result in just the opposite. For instance, a minimalist garden might use planters and pots to keep a few small, easily tended areas of green and then use wood, gravel, and other inorganic elements in between to create wide, open spaces that add a little green while creating an empty look that might evoke thoughts of a Japanese rock garden. (see my Japanese Rock Garden Article)
Get Creative with Plants
In modern garden design you can do almost anything so don’t be afraid to mix and match different plants to create new effects. Traditional gardens often group together flowers and perennials from one area of the world to create a natural effect, but your garden can be a mix of Japanese bamboo, English flowers, and Italian herbs. Emphasis in modern garden design often falls on that’s pleasing to the creator, where traditional gardens are often attempts to create something that is a work of art to be viewed a modern garden design has none of these restraints. With a little creativity and planning, you can eventually settle on something that works right for you.