07 January, 2012

Guiding the eye.

Planning the gaps between the groups of trees was as important as planning where the trees would be.  The gaps are starting to make their mark in what seven years ago was a bare paddock.  Some cunning plans are only now becoming real.

From the house the shaped lawn guides your view outwards.  As the far trees become more significant, the gaps will draw the eye further.   
The plantings are starting to bracket the view.
The driveway also comes down through the trees and across the gap.  Revealing a brief view of the house out in the open, before the trees hide it again.

A photo taken from on top of the pergola, with some labels might explain it better.  But the best explanation will come as the trees fill out into a denser visual barrier.  And the gaps take more significance.  But while that's going to take some years yet, now it's starting to show.
The end point is the far Pisa Range.  Higher than it seems from here.  Snow covered in winter.
The gap above is outlined between the Elms and the Walnuts.  The Elms are dense enough, but the walnuts have been a little disappointing.  However I see all of the neighbourhood young walnuts are a little ratty, but the older ones are grand and well grown.  So it will be OK.

I have been calling this an Allee. (to myself) But I now see the definitions of that word seem to be all about an avenue.  With two long rows of tree on each side.  Not sure of what the name is now.

My 'Allee', stops at the neighbours pine trees about 300 meters out, and then there is another shelter belt about a kilometer away.  I think a stroll over there with the chain saw, to deal with 5 big trees out of each row would improve things a lot.  But not with the owners of the trees I think  !!


  1. There are some methods you can use to tweak things a bit and give you a more mature look. If you underplant with some dense sub-shrubs. But not in front of the trees but through them.
    And you have the idea with the reds either side, except you only have that effect for at most a month. Which would of course be grand if like Claude Monet in Giverny you were only there for that month. Think the Haywain, where the red of the harness pulls the thing together. And mow your vista, but come in from the full width. Either that or about thirty yards out put something fastigiate but grey or blueish.

    Happy new one

  2. perhaps there's a Japanese concept - for framing borrowed scenery?

  3. I just posted something about "the long view" so important in Scandinavian design. It gives you peace and a feeling of well-being according to the experts. And I think that's what you are achieving here. Great stuff.

  4. The thought you're putting into placement and design of your land will become more and more satisfying, I'm sure. Some of our trees threaten to block the lazyman's view fro the windows, but I reckon we can always walk out in search of it.

    A swift hired hit on those five trees would leave you blameless, but with a possible twing of guilt you'd drown in a glass of wine on the patio.

  5. There is a lot in japanese gardening about guiding the view. And a term for that style of garden. One of the most interesting things is a bit too tricky and try hard for my taste. But it goes like this.
    There is a water bowl and ladle for drinking. But the ladle has a chain which makes you bend down to use it. And behold - only then do you see the prepared view.

  6. The Hay Wain harness. Well we have the far concrete power pole to hold it together. Nobody has mentioned that, or perhaps has not noticed it. When I pointed out the sheer non beauty of the pole to my friend Tim Hawkins, a photographer,he said it is just amazing what is not noticed.

  7. I wouldn't mow out any further, mostly because it would become too much of an obvious feature. Or too dominant. But it's interesting to see that something put in place from seven years ago has become apparent only this year. Perhaps it will change rapidly over the next two or three.

  8. So true it is that over time, gardens take on something special in their design. Sometimes it is a surprise that what was planed years ago that is finally coming into its own. I like distant views, and here Lake MIchigan does lots of that for me. If you make the distant view too obvious, I think you will loose that sense of intrigue that is essential to gardening. It stimulates interest to "go out and check out" what is out there. Jack

  9. I think you are right Jack. Some intrigue needs to be there. There is nothing of intrigue about this 'Alee' but it could easily be made too obvious and contrived. I have seen some and you will have seen them too. Like the long reflecting pool, followed by the centralised statute, followed by the double row of standardised plane trees, followed by the gap in the trees with the special gate. Centralised.
    Not bad actually, but the first thought you have is about the design.


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