All too often, our homes and our gardens can become little boxes, with little to delight the eye and bring variety to the environment. Thinking beyond straight lines and right angles, and considering circular shapes can help bring a different element to your home and garden.
Circular Shapes Inside Your Home
Most of our furnitures, fixtures and fittings are designed to fit into a square and rectangular world. But even when our rooms are rectangular, bringing curving and circular forms into our designs can help them to feel more organic and welcoming.
For example, bringing sofas or chairs out from the walls creating a seating area around a circular rug can create a nurturing and convivial feel. A circular table in a kitchen might improve the flow, and make sure that the space really is the hub of the home.
Circular lights, light shades, mirrors, artworks and other décor elements can break up harsh lines and help us feel more connected to the natural world, with its more organic forms. Circles are common in nature, and by embracing round forms, we can feel less distanced when inside our homes from the natural world around us.
Linking Home and Garden
Stepping out of a back door into your garden, often, you will find yet more square and rectangular features. But patios and decking can also be curved and organic – with gentle lines which blend them into the landscaping beyond.
You might also consider adding circular garden buildings, gazebos, or other circular shapes for your garden's recreational spaces, rather than traditional boring boxes. These circular garden buildings will blend more harmoniously into the garden as a whole – integrating with surrounding planting and bringing a sense of magic to the space.
More curving shapes for outdoors living areas can help blur the lines between inside and out and help your garden feel like an extension to your home.
Circular Shapes in Your Garden
Gardens may often be surrounded by fencing which makes them feel more man-made and confined. But by creating more open, circular areas at the heart of the space, surrounded by dense, biodiverse planting around the edges, you can blur the garden boundary and make your garden feel more enclosed, while also making it feel more a part of the 'borrowed landscape' beyond.
For example, you might have a circular meadow area or circular wildlife pond at the heart of the space, with plenty of trees, shrubs and other perennial plants around the outside.
You might also think of creating a series of circular 'glades' within your garden – a series of small garden rooms to fulfil different functions – each one surrounded by a food forest or woodland garden, perhaps, or other beautiful and productive planting.
Fruit tree guilds, with companion plants positioned within the drip line of the tree to aid its growth and boost your harvest, can be circular in shape.
Banana circles or papaya circles are other circular food producing spaces that can help you garden organically and make the most of your space. These involve placing bananas or smaller fruit trees on a raised ring around a central pit filled with organic materials. These can also help you grow more food successfully in less space.
Of course, growing food in your garden is always a great idea. You may wish to consider growing annual crops as well as perennial ones. But you don't need to grow vegetables in traditional squares or rows.
As well as incorporating edible planting in lush, layered planting around the space, you can also consider creating a beautiful mandala garden – circular shaped growing areas with annual crops grown in curving patterns all around – perhaps with a feature at the centre.
Spiral form growing areas, or herb spirals, are another great idea to consider. These are beds which help you grow a wide range of herbs and other plants which like different growing conditions in a relatively small area.
These are just some ideas that you might consider if you want to bring something different to your inside and outside spaces with circular shapes.