Circles in the Landscape

“…the power of the world works in circles, and everything tries to be round…”  - Black Elk

Circles contain and concentrate outdoor space.

 This may sound like designer 'mumbo jumbo' but the technique of placing circular inlays in the ground plane has been used for millennia. Many sacred buildings such as temples, churches and mosques have circular shapes or at least have circles of  tile or stone in their floors.

Native Americans, such as the Wampanoags of the Northeast, used the powerful circle shape in their council meetings. They would sit in a circle, in an outdoor 'council ring', and discuss important matters. They believed the circular shape aided democratic deliberations. The large round room beneath the rotunda of many government Capitols echoes this idea.

So how do you incorporate a circle in your garden? There are many ways are a few ideas....

This above idea is from Adam Frost's excellent website. He is a British garden designer...check him out.

Overlapping plant beds in circular shapes...interesting...

(Johnsen Landscapes & Pools)

Here my client placed a beautiful tiled table to sit within the curved freestanding wall we built around her new terrace...It works beautifully!

This is from the Labyrinth Company..cut fieldstone is pieced together in a labyrinth layout...absolutely entrancing

(Johnsen Landscapes & Pools)

This is a circular spa my firm designed and built for a wonderful client...The circular shapes invites camaraderie and looks beautiful to boot!


  1. very nice, I perticually like Adam Frost's idea, and the Labyrinth

  2. I am having a garden in house that I have build by myself where you will find cheap garden furniture but the designs of the furniture are awesome and fully creative. I am always interested for cheap but well designed garden furniture for my garden. If you have any information regarding cheap garden furniture please let me know. Thanks.

  3. I too love circles in the garden. In one of my small gardens I have two millstones. Millstones of various sizes used to be common in antique shops, but not lately.

  4. I love millstones! I used one in a front landing - it makes the space extra special.

    Mohonk Mt House, where I once worked in the gardens, has a millstone surrounded with herbs..I remember how we set it into place with a tractor and planted thyme, scented geraniums and a variety of herbs around it....

  5. Yikes--I googled millstones on the well-tested theory that you can buy just about anything online. There are lots of millstones for sale, yes, but not for the $2 or $3 we paid for ours, which are maybe 24 inches in diameter! No wonder I don't see them often in antique shops anymore.

    I tried to use my small stones for an herb garden, but the scale was just too small.


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