How create secret garden backyard

How create secret garden backyard

A small secret garden inside the main garden is a technique almost as old as the art of gardening itself. It has a lot of advantages and only one disadvantage: all business is forgotten when you settle down in a secluded corner, in peace and quiet.

Role in space

A secret garden is like a surprise box. When viewed from the outside, it looks like a dense, massive volume formed by living or architectural hedges, impenetrable groups of shrubs or trees. For the time being, let’s forget the intriguing space

inside and first decide what compositional problem will solve this “construction” as a whole, mentally move it around the site. What could it do?

A plug. 

There are always places that are difficult to beat in the composition of the garden: the “arms and pockets” between the buildings and the fence, the territorial appendages on plots of complex shape. It may be easier to make a small garden of its own here and not to agonize in search of an idea that can connect the small space with the main one.


The enclosure of a secret garden is sometimes convenient to divide the area into zones of different purposes, close an unsightly view or make it one side of the frame for a beautiful landscape.

“Bagel Hole.” 

Place a secret garden closer to the center of the plot, and the remaining space will take the form of a “bagel” – it can no longer be shot through with a glance, instantly assessing the scale of the territory – have to go in a circle. On a circular route the visual connections between sections are cut off (we cannot look beyond the turn without stepping further), and it is quite easy to “string” various landscape views or an enfilade of green rooms on it. Such a garden will seem larger than it is.


A secret garden is not a place for walking and activity, but for contemplation and reflection. True, most modern people would rather think of another version of the concept – a summer dining room – as one of the most obvious. Nevertheless, think about other possibilities, even at first glance exotic. In medieval Europe secret gardens were created for secluded reflection and prayer, in the East such places were intended for admiring a certain natural phenomenon: sunrise or sunset; the moon; the blooming of osmanthus or other “iconic” plants.

Indeed, it makes sense to dedicate this part of the garden to some “ritual” associated with a season, time of day or weather that is psychologically meaningful to you. It can be an autumn or spring living room (for example, for May holidays), an eastern dining room (to have breakfast in good weather), a rain, shade or evening cabinet. The undeniable advantage of such a place, used only for a “special occasion,” is its serious positive effect on your inner state. Staying here becomes a powerful “vitamin” for the nervous system.

secret garden


In a secret garden, you can not be afraid of excessive intricacy, fractionality, which are considered the main mistakes of novice designers. It is good to have something to consider in a small space, going from detail to detail. A collection of miniature plants, a small, imaginatively decorated body of water, sculptures or even just unusual surfaces are not a complete list of ideas. You can remember a child’s game of “secrets”, complicating the decor with elements that are not immediately apparent: a mosaic or relief insertion in the paving or wall, the inscription, hidden in the bushes figure. Such details form a second layer of perception: after examining the garden as a whole, you return to the “little things” to appreciate the details.

If you are imbued with the idea of a “ritual” garden, then without any extra tips you can choose for its design objects and plants, causing you the necessary associations. Let’s only remind you what you need to do to make them “work” better. Do not lose sight of which side of the sun is on those days and hours when you intend to be in the garden, place the “iconic” plants so that they play in the sunlight – it attracts attention to them. When it comes to flowers, you will notice that different shades come to the fore in different lighting conditions. At dusk, purple and white flowers “light up” with magical light, but red is the “daytime” color. If the garden is at its decorative peak once a year, you can safely use bright colors, decorating architectural structures. Choosing a color for a particular season, taking into account the shades of plants in that time period, is not difficult.