University of Vermont Extension 
Department of Plant and Soil Science

Perennial Publications : Book of the Month

Feng Shui for Gardens. Too, Lillian. 1998. Element Books Ltd. hard cover, 224 pp.

Written by one of the world's experts on this currently popular subject in Western gardens, it has many practical tips for gardens "irrespective of size, location, or climate." Feng Shui is the "art of living in such perfect balance with your environment that every aspect of your life benefits." As the author points out, "Landscape Feng Shui is infinitely more important than the Feng Shui of interiors and any serious practioner should place priority on getting environmental Feng Shui correct before proceeding to the interior of the home." The belief of this philosophy is that by applying Feng Shui principles, "you will greatly improve your chances of success in all the areas of your life that are most important to you."

Feng Shui stresses that we must live in tune with the world's landscape. The two main schools are the form or landscape school, stressing the importance of land formations and waterways; and the compass school, built on complex formulas. This book mainly deals with the former, as the author states "...the balance of features (or lack of it) in the overall landscape will ultimately override even the most powerful compass formula."

The principles described in detail, illustrated and with examples, include analyzing the surrounding landscape and views, good and bad, and dealing with these; eight directional differences, and changes with the seasons; using Feng Shui in small spaces; proper selection and placement of plants, considering not only flowers but adult plant features and symbolic values; proper use and placement of water features, including the water dragon formula; choice and placement of garden structures and accessories; and finally, garden lighting.

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