French garden is a formal garden that just like Italian garden is based on principles of symmetry and order.The Gardens of Versailles are considered an epitome of jardin à la française as they include numerous geometric patterns, architecural elements and water features.
The French Renaissance garden is similar to Italian Renaissance garden and takes cues from it. Emerged in 16th century the French garden shared much of its features with the Italian one. The Gardens of Vesailles that were created between 1662 and 1700 years by gardener André Le Nôtre used to occupy 15,000 acres of land now it’s just 800. They featured fountains, statues, and parterres.
French garden is all about symmetry and decoration. Geometrically-shaped hedges and shrubs are complemented with parterres and pathways, bosquets and topiaries. The garden also includes a terrace that allows to observe the garden which is enhanced with water wells like fountains and pools. The so-called broderies decorate the parterres adding curves to the strict geometric shapes that dominate in the garden.
How To Create
To create a French style garden make sure the house is the focal point and greenery is sleek and maintained. Geometrical shrubs and intricate topiaries are the key features to use but you can also have lots of architectural elements at your disposal. Think fountains, statuary and stairs that connect various parts of the garden.
The plants to use for your French garden are lavender, dahlias, cannas, and agapanthus. Though initially French garden was not too colorful it was later enhanced with various other flowers. Be sure to keep hedges and topiaries maintained as the clean lines and geometric shapes are crucial to the style of French garden. If you want an informal French style garden go for the country garden look with brighter colors and a bit more relaxed (more natural) look.