Feng Shui is a Chiese system used to create a harmonious environment. Feng Shui principles can be used inside and outside the home. Design principles include placement of objects, space and color. People have an emotional and psychological response to color in their environment.
Use Feng Shui to select a color theme for the garden to create a beautiful, harmonious landscape. In the natural world, colors blend in the landscape.Brown pebbles glimmer in the sand. Green plants blend into the woodland. Purple shades highlight mountain slopes. Color intensity varies with the natural light of the outdoor environment. Colors are more intense in the bright Mediterranean climate then in areas such as Seattle, which has more subdued lighting.
Natural environment and light should be taken into consideration when choosing garden hues. Formal gardens tend to have dramatic masses of eye popping color. Masses of marigolds, tulips or petunias catch the eye. In a natural landscape, the flowers blend in more with foliage, adding bright sparks of pop to the landscape.
The Color Wheel
The color wheel gives us a visual clue of the harmonies and contrasts between colors. Primary colors are blue, red and yellow. Mixtures of primary colors become the secondary hues of purple, orange and green. These six colors become the basic color wheel. Colors that are on opposite sides of the color wheel are called complementary colors, and offer contrasts. Red is opposite green. Yellow is opposite purple. Blue is opposite orange.
Meanhwile, colors adjacent to one another are harmonies. Combinations may consist of harmonies or contrasts. Most people respond positively to color combinations that either complement each other or contrast with each other.
Suggested Color Principles for the Garden
The Encyclopedia of Feng Shui by Gill Hale offers guidance to design a harmonious garden using color principles.
- Red: Red is a vibrant color that dominates the garden when planted in masses. A mass of red color is exciting rather than restful. Red plants make excellent accent plants that successfully draw the eye to certain areas to focus attention in the garden.
- White and Silver. White is always refreshing and clean to look at. White and silver flowers can have a luminous shine in the moonlight. An all white garden can be monotonous, even lifeless. Interesting green foliage adds interest and life to bland whites.
- Yellow: Usually associated with spring and fall, yellow is a cheerful color that signifies change. Bright yellow is a lively, cheerful color. Pale yellow, mixed with white can have a demoralizing effect. Yellow combined with blue or purple is a fresh looking combination.
- Green: This is a restful, tranquil color that predominates Chinese gardens. Green foliage comes in a variety of shapes, sizes and color striations. Add sparks of accent color with whites, pinks and reds.
- Blue: Tranquil blue is a restful color that can be gloomy if overused. Blue can be combined with pink, white and silver for sparks of color.
- Purple: Majestic purple is a rich, royal color that can be both restful and sumptuous. Purple can be mixed with calming soft pinks, whites and blues.
- Pink: Gentle pink is a non-threatening hue that draws people in.
- Orange: Happy orange is a warm color that can be difficult to place. Orange is best used with green.
Feng Shui color suggestions may be used to give your garden the look of peaceful harmony. Enjoy spending time in nature and being in the garden.