Garden Art Anyone Can Create
Create instant interest in your yard with garden art made from recycled or inexpensive materials.
Contain Your Art
Highlight small garden art pieces—homemade, recycled or purchased—by setting them in a container. This galvanized tub contains two sculptures, petunias and other plants in a graceful arrangement.
Try Japanese Inspiration
A backyard Japanese garden uses art and design to make a peaceful setting where you can relax and meditate. Here, stones create a dry riverbed; smaller rocks at the back of an area and larger ones in the foreground create the illusion of distance.
At his Ohio farmhouse, Nick McCullough creates order and elegance in wide-open spaces through both plantings and art. "I like gardens to feel really natural," he says. "But what people don't realize is what makes them feel loose and welcoming is actually good structure and organization."
Enliven a landscape with recycled materials. Check salvage shops, garden centers, even curbside giveaways. Use materials just as you find them, or give them a fresh coat of paint so they stand out in the garden.
Make a Mosaic
Mosaic stepping stones, benches and other projects are easier to create than you may think. Surround with colorful flowers to highlight your work.
Fill a Wagon
An old wagon becomes an inviting and whimsical setting for container plants.
Found items and decorative planters dress up the wall of an old building at Northwind Perennial Farm in Burlington, Wisconsin. You can adapt the same idea for a garage, shed, or other wall at your home.
Try a Headboard Gate
An antique wood headboard, trimmed to fit, becomes a gate between the front and back yards.
Related: Great Garden Gate Ideas
Play with Your Art
A checkerboard painted on an old stump sits ready for action next to twig chairs.
Create a Scene
Step it Up
Turn a short stepladder into a focal point with a coat of bright paint, then decorate the steps with your favorite potted combinations. Look for old ladders at garage and estate sales, thrift stores and flea markets.
Reuse Old Chairs
A coat of paint turns an old chair into a colorful perch for a flower container.
Theme to Your Interests
To inspire your garden art, think about what you love. If it's cats, for instance, maybe you create a cat garden with cattails and a cat sculpture.
Add Some Whimsy
You'll garner grins from both kids and adults by adding whimsical elements. In this Lincoln, Nebraska, garden, an imp nestles in the crook of a tree above a grapevine wreath nest of plastic dinosaur eggs.
Decorate a Door
Recycle an old ceiling tin by cutting an initial from it. Half-depth columns frame an M on this toolshed door.
A whimsical fairy painting in blues and purples on a garden shed forms a pretty backdrop to the many colors of lilies in a Janesville, Wisconsin, garden.
Use Birdhouses as Decor
A collection of old birdhouses and a vintage shutter dress up the side of a shed.
Hang It Up
Just as you arrange garden plants to grow at different heights, you'll want garden art to appear at different levels, too. Try placing something high, such as in the trees, at eye level and down low item to await discovery. In this garden, an old birdcage stand elevates a hanging plant. Even simpler: Hang a painted birdhouse from the stand.
Make a Birdbath Planter
Damaged and broken items may no longer be useful for their original purpose, but they make great art. A damaged birdbath becomes a succulent container garden here. Add a base of soilless potting mix, plant with succulents and finish with a mulch of Spanish moss. Decorate with your choice of accessories, such as this candy dish planter, compass and spoon.
Related: Make a Living-Roof Birdhouse
Blend Art and Landscape
Try using the shape and design of your garden art to accent plants. In this South Haven, Michigan, garden, the fanciful, delicate curls of an old iron chair look just right with the profusion of tiny white flowers from sweet autumn clematis and alyssum.
Line up Collections
One small item may not catch your eye, but a collection of them can be striking. Children's antique watering cans provide a colorful display on a ledge in an herb garden in Troy, Kansas.
Balance Vertical and Horizontal Accents
Nestle vintage newels throughout flowerbeds for vertical accents to balance a horizontal landscape.
Related: 20 Secrets to Landscape Success