Gardens are meant to be experienced. It’s true this sometimes means appreciating from afar, but for me my most pleasurable and memorable moments in gardens have come when I’ve had the opportunity to stop, sit and take in the sights, sounds and smells – to truly be immersed in the space. I think this is when gardens have the opportunity to fulfill their highest calling and transport us to a another state, whether it’s to be calmed or invigorated.
This leads me to the importance of creating an enticing space to sit in a garden. This summer I had the opportunity to tour several gardens on Vashon Island with the fine folks at the Elisabeth C. Miller Botanical Garden. The garden of landscape architect, David Pheiffer, was one of the magnificent gardens we visited.A short walk down a gently sloped meadow brought us to a peaceful covered seating area overlooking the Puget Sound. Under the covering sits a sensuous outdoor seat fit for two. I say sensuous because the seat is made from a single piece of wood in which the organic curves invite the “participant” to sit, relax and take it all in. David placed two teal blue pillows atop the seat to make it even more warm and inviting. A wonderful example of creating a seating area that fits in beautifully with it’s surroundings.