Your outdoor living space should be a source of harmony and happiness. A place for you to relax after a long day at work. There are many ways to create a relaxing atmosphere in your garden. One of which is to use the principals of Feng Shui.
Feng Shui is a Chinese design philosophy, if applied will help promote healing and harmony not only in your garden but also in your life. Translated, Feng Shui means wind and water. According to traditional Chinese beliefs, wind and water are the source of all life energy. The Chinese believe that chi brings blessings into your environment and your life. The basic principle of designing your garden according to this philosophy is to encourage the chi to flow into, throughout your outdoor space, and in turn your life. It is all about positive energy.
The first thing you need to do is identify the negative or bad chi elements in your outdoor space and apply Feng Shui “cures” to raise the positive chi. For instance power lines and large buildings would be considered negative aspects, adding upward lighting, wind chimes and decorative elements help to balance the negative. This does not mean you want to over clutter the garden, which can block the flow of energy. Removing dead plants, creating curved walkways as opposed to straight paths will also help to un-clutter and create positive flow.
It is important to make sure you include all five elements: wood, fire, earth, metal and water, in your design. These elements work together to create harmony, but be careful of favoring one element over another. Too much of one element can cancel out another. Balance and placement is the key.
The elements are represented as follows:
- wood is represented naturally using plants, flowers and trees
- fire is represented in lighting, candles, fire pit and red toned plants
- earth is represented using stone or brick for pathways, ceramic decorative objects
- metal is represented by metal furniture and decorative sculptures
- water is represented in fountains, water features and waterfalls
Feng Shui practitioners use the Bagua, an octagon shaped symbol that identifies the nine life sectors in your garden corresponding with eight directions. The Bagua is a guide showing you how to raise the chi in each of these sectors. The nine life sectors include Wealth (SE), Fame (S), Relationships (SW), Children (W), Helpful People (NW), Career (N), Knowledge (NE), Family (E) and T’ai Chi (Center). Placing the right elements, shapes and colors in each of these sectors will help raise the chi and promote the positive flow of energy creating a peaceful and relaxing space for you to enjoy.