Style and ma­te­ri­als

French Property News - - Expert Advice -

It is al­ways help­ful to look at gar­den de­sign mag­a­zines or im­ages on the in­ter­net to get an idea of the look you are aim­ing for. The style of your house can be a source of in­spi­ra­tion; us­ing the same ma­te­ri­als in the gar­den as in the build­ings will help it sit well in the land­scape. You can also look at the lo­cal tra­di­tional build­ing ma­te­ri­als and con­struc­tion styles of your area for in­spi­ra­tion.

Gravel

Gravel is a cheap and at­trac­tive sur­face that can be used for drive­ways or paths. It should be laid on a base of hard­core, with a thicker layer re­quired if it is to be driven over. Add a solid edg­ing or kerb ( volige ou bor­dure) to con­tain the stones and stop them spread­ing onto lawns or flowerbeds.

Self-bind­ing gravier sta­bil­isé, is a mix of gravel and clay that binds to­gether when com­pacted and is an­other in­ex­pen­sive and at­trac­tive sur­face for drives or paths. Both kinds will need top­ping up ev­ery few years.

Light­ing

Func­tional light­ing al­lows you to stay out on your ter­race on balmy sum­mer nights or wel­come vis­i­tors to the front door. Am­bi­ent light­ing can be used to high­light gar­den fea­tures or sculp­ture at night. How­ever, re­mem­ber that both kinds can dis­turb wildlife so don’t overdo it.

Us­ing lo­cal ma­te­ri­als and ar­ti­sans means you are sup­port­ing the lo­cal com­mu­nity and in some cases pre­serv­ing lo­cal skills and her­itage

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