Formal garden is the oldest style of designed gardens in European history. It is the timeless style of clean straight lines of geometrical shapes that has its place in all time periods. Formal garden is characterized by geometric shapes and symmetry. This form derives from medieval monastic gardens in which monks grew herbs, vegetables and flowers.
If you have large garden you want to design as formal garden, you can divide it into several parts with low hedges, walls, pergolas or green corridors. Each part has different geometric shapes. Garden parts are connected to each other by straight paths. Small gardens can be designed to be stylish fully in harmony with house's architecture.
An integral part of formal garden are hedges of different forms. Most of them are low not to prevent view on individual parts. For hedges we use evergreen plants as boxwood or yew. We can also use privet, beech and other species that can be pruned. Using boxwood will bring peculiar smell of this plant into the garden, which is an integral part of the old formal gardens and parks.
Paths in straight lines give formal garden structure. Paths are symmetrical and do intersect in the centre. At intersection is an element that attracts attention: statue, fountain, tree, round bed or something similar. It is important that each path leads to a point of interest or element that attracts attention. Avoid long dull paths. Long paths should be interrupted by a small flowerbed or arch with roses.
Classical formal gardens have paved paths with clay bricks. We can also use thick layer of sand.
Formal garden can be planted with wide selection of plants. We can use a variety of perennials, annuals, biennials and other plants. Plants are planted symmetrically. Trees and shrubs should be planted symmetrically in pairs. Even the vegetable garden can be arranged as a formal garden.