Garden Design. Wednesday , March 21st , 2018 - 02:56:41 AM
Setting a big tree may require machinery or at least multiple gardeners and ample space for maneuvering and stationing amendments and soils, it would be sad to damage or undo some newly planted bed. This seems so obvious, but for lots of gardeners (the author included) a block of fresh perennials may be impossible to avoid planting right away. Be strong, resist the temptation.
That means that if the riser is 5 inches, the tread (what you walk on) should be 16 inches. All I can say is that the rule is true, and I have used it from steep canyon faces to gentle changes of patio levels. A useful corollary states that 5 feet is the minimum width for two people climbing steps side by side.
Sit near a tree in the park, or a wall, and gradually edge away, and you will see how it works. Of course, there are times when the point of a landscape design is a monumental sense of scale or view, but the best gardens, whatever their size, modulate a feeling of enclosure and openness, and this rule will help.
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