Borrowing the landscape is a garden design trick of old. Even if you’re not lucky enough to have a great view, it doesn’t mean that you can’t borrow some of the features from the neighbouring landscape.
If you live in a town or City, you could look on to an amazing building or simply be able to see a mature tree in a neighbour’s garden that gives you some additional structure.
I guess what I’m really saying is that the design of your garden doesn’t have to be restricted by the physical boundaries. Most suburban gardens have some sort of physical boundary, normally a panel or close board fence, so if there are elements outside the confines of the formal garden space that you can use, why not take advantage?
In small town gardens this becomes really useful, especially if you don’t really have the space to plant a tree. If there’s one beyond your boundaries, you can most certainly use it within the design of your own garden.
Of course I couldn’t write a post about borrowing the landscape without a mention of the view from our new garden (sorry!). Other than some sheep fencing, we don’t have any physical boundaries that hide us from the neighbours which means that the landscape beyond will most certainly be borrowed when I design the garden.
Wherever you live and whatever the size, shape and style of your garden it’s really important that it sits comfortably within the surrounding area and the adjacent architecture. So when you’re planning your new garden, or tweaking what you have, look around at what your neighbours have and consider whether you could use these things to your advantage!