Garden expert David Domoney reveals the one thing we're forgetting in our gardens

There's another dimension of our garden we tend to neglect, but that can make our outdoor spaces even more relaxing

how to keep a water feature clean: terracotta water feature
(Image credit: Leigh Clapp Photography/Future)

Horticulturalist and broadcaster David Domoney has revealed one aspect of our gardens that we often end up neglecting. 

According to the gardening expert, we tend to limit our garden design ideas to three dimensions – time, smell and how the garden alters over the year. However, sound is a key feature that can elevate your outdoor space, and one we overlook.

broadcaster and gardener David Domoney

Broadcaster and gardener David Domoney

(Image credit: Alamy)

Writing on his blog, David Domoney highlights just how important sound is in the garden. Anyone who has had to endure building work during lockdown – or has perhaps worked in an office on a busy road – will understand just how stressful unwanted background noise can be.

'Sound forms a huge part of how our brains build a picture of their environment,' writes David. 'It has a tremendous effect on whether or not we feel relaxed and at ease in that space.'

We head out into the garden for a moment of calm and quiet, so why not do everything we can to make it an extra relaxing experience through sound? 'We are aware of sound, even when we are not aware that we are aware of it,' comments David. 

pathway through grasses in garden

(Image credit: Annaick Guitteny/Future)

In most gardens, there will be some noise from the world beyond the fence, but there are lots of things you can do to change the soundtrack. For example, David Domoney says to consider the sound of your own footsteps.

Is the sound of gravel crunching underfoot nostalgic or pleasing to you, or would you prefer the muffled sound of soft woodchips? The materials you choose when planning your garden path ideas all have a part to play in creating your ideal soundscape.

Adding one or two new bird feeders will encourage birdsong, and picking your favorite wildlife garden ideas will invite buzzing bees and insects. David Domoney notes that bamboo will bring the sound of rustling leaves and the knocking of bamboo stalks when it's particularly windy.

China teacup birdfeeder

(Image credit: David GIles)

A wind chime from Amazon is another cost-effective option that will make your garden feel tranquil with some gentle sound. And, last but not least, water feature ideas will also help to create a peaceful atmosphere with the incredibly calming sound of trickling water.

Don't let this important dimension of your garden design go forgotten any longer.

Millie Hurst
Millie Hurst

Millie joined Gardeningetc in January 2021 as a news writer. When she isn't writing about gardening, she's tending to her small front garden. Her geraniums, dahlias and nasturtiums are looking lovely right now. She recently bought a bench for the garden and is loving alfresco lunch breaks and taking time to notice seedlings growing. She loves picking up some new plants at the local garden centre and is never without some fresh flowers at home.