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A flower sitting with a group of dark rocks, bamboo, grass and the LawnZenGarden logo. A flower sitting with a group of dark rocks, bamboo, grass and the LawnZenGarden logo.

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by Carole Schwalm An arrangement of five small trees growing in containers along a stone wall.

Arrangements: “Harmony in Asymmetry”
Asymmetry: Irregularity, disproportionateness

Picture of large rocks balanced upon each other This is like totally the opposite of the all squares and eveness of formal gardens. It is about odd numbers, like three or five rocks or trees. Perhaps you do not place them all together in their group of five, but instead have three here and two nearby. You might want to take nine, for example, in groups of three.

As we think about our group of nine: one set of three should be considered the main group. You could use a taller tree or shrub, with two smaller. The tree is the center focus. Form a triangular design, a little on the uneven side (a scalene triangle). Always think ahead to their more mature size. A suggestion (Yuko Kawaguchi) is to group acid-loving plants like azalea, camellia and a Japanese maple.

The same principle applies to your patio container garden, with your grouping. One container pot is the focal point, then add smaller container pots in proportion.

Share your Zen experience or if you'd like more information.