House & Garden

Tips for Creating Your Own Zen Garden

Zen gardens also known as Japanese gardens and dry landscape gardens, are very popular because they are simple and beautiful.  One of the primary reasons for this popularity is the fact zen gardens are easy to start and maintain. This is true when compared to traditional gardens.

If you want to start your own zen garden, there are some tips to know about.  These tips can be used for outdoor or desktop zen gardens. 

Contain The Garden

One of the most important steps you need to take is to contain your garden whether it is an outdoor one or a desktop one.  To contain the area, you need to place a fence to separate the area from its surroundings. If the garden is outdoors, you should consider using a wooden fence in any kind of wood you like.  

When you contain the garden, you will make it neater.  The garden will also be easier for you to maintain.  

Use Gravel Or Sand

After you have contained the garden, you need to fill it with gravel or sand.  Zen gardens are meant to give the impression of a coastal scene as seen from the sky.  Elements such as sand or gravel will be used to represent the water around islands.  

Incorporate Rocks Of Different Sizes

All zen gardens have rocks of different sizes in them.  These rocks are the elements that represent the islands surrounded by water which is the gravel or sand.  When placing your rocks, you need to be creative. 

You can group a few rocks together or you can spread them throughout the garden.  Most zen gardens will have one rock which is much larger than the others. This rock represents a cliff in a coastal area or a mountain, depending on what you want from your garden. 

Rake The Sand Or Gravel

As the water represents water, it needs to have waves.  Using a rake will help you create the ripple effect that you want for the sea.  When you are raking your garden, you can let your imagination go and have some fun.  If you want to go for real water then check out these outdoor water fountain ideas

There is no right or wrong way to rake the sand or gravel and you should use different strokes to find what you like.  A lot of people update their zen gardens regularly by changing the rake patterns. Monks do this as an act of meditation. 

Of course, it is not very easy to rake a zen garden.  If you have a desktop garden, raking it will be much easier.  However, if you have a large outdoor garden, you need to put the time and effort into it.  Making this a family activity can increase the fun and it will help you refresh your body and mind. 

Maintain The Garden

The clean appearance is one of the reasons why people love zen gardens.  The meditative aims are another reason.  While you might feel the need to add more to your zen garden, you should keep it as simple as possible.  

There are some zen gardens that have bridges.  If you are going to add other elements to your garden such as bridges, you should ensure they are wood.  Plants should be kept to a minimum with moss growing around your rocks being the only acceptable plants.

You also need to take the time to properly maintain the garden.  Cleaning the rocks and removing plants from the sand or gravel is important to maintain the aesthetic and simplicity. 

Zen gardens are popular because they are beautiful and simple in a way other gardens are not.  They can be a refreshing addition to any home or living area. If you are going to create your own zen garden, there are certain steps that you need to take.  You also need to ensure your garden is created according to the main goals of zen. This is to feel the essence or nature.

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