Feng Shui Arrangement For Home And Garden

Feng Shui arrangement involves the placement of objects to promote harmony of the soul and peace of the spirit. Find out how to apply this ancient asian practice can hormonize your home and garden.

The ancient Chinese art of Feng Shui involves the placement of object to promote harmony of the soul and peace of the spirit. While it's never been very practical to apply it to the home (if your kitchen faces southeast instead of northwest, how do you change it?), Feng Shui has become a fad among gardeners.

In Chinese "˜feng' means wind and it represents all that is not seen - our moods, feelings and spirituality. "˜Shui' means water, and it represents all that is visible and tangible - our possessions and structures. Basically, Feng Shui is a philosophy of creating balance between the physical and spiritual worlds.

As you begin to apply Feng Shui to your garden, there are three concepts that will influence everything you do:

-Energy flow, referred to as your garden's "Chi." This can be manipulated and balanced by the use of straight lines or curved lines.

-The balance of yin and yang. While these terms represent opposites of any type, yin is usually associated with those elements that are dark or soft; yang with elements that are light or hard.

-The relationship between the five elements: wood, metal, fire, water and earth. These must always be kept in balance.

To apply Feng Shui to an established garden, use a compass or a land survey to help you divide the space into eight general areas: north, south, east, west, northeast, northwest, southeast, southwest.

NORTH. This area corresponds to your creativity and personal growth, and should feature water elements. This is a good area for a pond. In keeping with the flowing nature of water, emphasize wavy and curvy lines""perhaps a round flower bed around your birdbath (water). Avoid using earth elements -- the antithesis of water - here. For example, don't lay a brick path or use a stone bench. If you choose a birdbath for your water feature, choose a metal one over terracotta.

NORTHEAST. This area represents your wisdom and intellectual growth. Focus on earth elements - stone benches, rock gardens, boulders, statues. This is not an area that should be planted heavily, so site your tool shed here.

NORTHWEST. This area represents trade and travel. Use metal elements here - wind chimes, a metal tool shed, etc. Avoid fire elements such as barbecues and red flowers.

EAST. Symbolizing health, healing and rebirth, this is an area for fruit trees, vegetable gardens and medicinal plants like herbs. Also consider placing wooden playsets or exercise areas here. The element of choice here is wood, and it can be fulfilled by trees and other woody plants.

SOUTH. This area represents opportunity and achievement, which is associated with happiness among the hard-working Chinese. Focus on fire elements and items with pointy or triangular shapes. This is a good place for barbecues, fireplaces, red flowers and trees with flaming autumn foliage. Avoid water elements like ponds and fountains.

SOUTHEAST. Associated with wealth and abundance, this is an area for wood elements. Place very showy plants and flowers here, or have a well-stocked fish pond. Avoid metal furniture, statuary or tools.

SOUTHWEST. Associated with love, marriage, romance and relationships, this is an area for earth elements. It's a good spot for a dining area, as eating meals together is a celebration of relationships. However, avoid wood - no wooden picnic tables or patio furniture. A wrought iron bistro set on a flagstone terrace would be perfect.

WEST. This area focuses on children and is a good spot for a playset or outdoor entertaining area. The element of choice is metal, and fire elements should be avoided.

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