His Majesty – the flower bed – is a centerpiece of any yard. These areas designated for growing flowers provide us with months of beautiful colors and scents and let us express our full gardening creativity when bulding them
But an empty bed at the beginning of your planting season can be a real challenge. An empty backyard where the bed is yet to be – even more so. Why?
Well, flower beds are not so easy to plan and build. An image you have in your mind can be drastically different from what you will end up with after digging and planting – especially if you are inexperienced. Personally, it took years before my flower bed started to look like more than just a bunch of pretty flowers that randomly grow on the same patch.
Fortunately, these days you have plenty of resources like this one to inspire you and help you find something that suits your taste.
In this article, you will find a selection of classic ground-level beds of various styles, as well as raised beds – including many ideas for upcycling.
Before diving into the imaginative world of classic flower beds, let’s learn something about bed edging – a very important element of any flower bed design.
Flower Bed Edging Examples
A flower bed edge will define the look of your flower bed almost as much as vegetation it will contain. The shape of your garden could also depend on the edging style, and vice versa. That is why it is important to consider all options that are available. Here are some of the most common ones.
Because the flower bed plant community stands out so much from what surrounds them, whether its grass, concrete or gravel, actually building an edge is not mandatory. The flower bed creates its own natural edge. Even if some plant overflows its bed – it can look charming.
However, having no edge can create some issues, e.g. tricky mowing. Also, an edge is something that can give an additional appeal, so consider the following ways of creating it.
Edging With Border Fences
One of the typical ways to edge a bed is by using a flower bed border fence. They are used for edging typical rectangular or square flower beds, for example along garden pathways or against a building wall. Curves and wavy patterns are hard to achieve when using fences.
Fences are usually made out of wood, plastic or wire. In my opinion, wooden ones look best out of the three, and that goes for any bed design. You can buy a bed fence in garden centers, but with some effort (and tools), you can make it yourself.
Edging With Stones
Edging a garden bed with stones is a classic option that will add diversity and texture to your flower bed. Additionally, warmth-loving plants will benefit from stone structures, as they retain the sun’s heat. Also, small lizards will highly appreciate it.
Edging with bricks or concrete elements falls into the same category. This tutorial uses bricks to create a warm, rustic bed edge.
Green Edging and a Wavy Flower Bed
Although flower beds are often edged with hard materials (e.g., bricks, stones, fences), it doesn’t have to be like that. You can use vegetation as well. You can use different plants, but low shrubs are suitable for this purpose – especially because they will last many years.
Another advantage of using plants as green edges is that they can easily and naturally follow non-linear edge patterns. This particular bed is wavy with deep curves, adding more dynamics to the entire design.
Edging With Flowers
Beds that are edged with one flowering species are really attractive, especially if you manage to create a slope like this one.
Go for inexpensive, densely growing, productive flowering plants such as marigolds, begonias, asters or chrysanthemums. They should be hardy enough to take “life on the edge” well.
Classic Flower Beds
A cool thing about flower beds is that you can make them anywhere where you are allowed to dig and where the soil allows – in your front yard, in your backyard, along with your fence or your driveway, around any garden feature, or in the middle of your lawn.
Besides looking gorgeous themselves, flower beds can influence and change the entire look and feel of your yard, thereby becoming a true landscaping element. You will see what I mean in some of the examples below.
Oval Flower Bed
To a human eye, symmetry is captivating. A circle often considered a “perfect shape”.
That is probably the reason why circular or oval flower beds are so popular. They look especially striking when placed in the middle of a well-maintained lawn.
The flowers inside a round bed can be a single, color, a random mix of two or more colors, or in several colors which follow the round pattern, which can be a little challenging to achieve. To find out how to create a perfectly round flower bed, go here.
Geometric Pattern Flower Bed
In spite of our last example being a classic, flower beds do not have to follow a circular or oval pattern. If you are bored with standard approaches, you could try some unusual geometry. This zig-zag flower pattern is simple to achieve, yet it’s visually very effective.
When striving for geometry, you should create edges of your desired on the ground out of sticks or tape. Then plant carefully within the borders of your pattern.