A path is a feature too often overlooked in a garden or landscape. Maybe it lacks functionality, or beauty, or it’s needed — but just not there.
A well-designed path can do more than keep your feet dry. It can tell you where to walk, and also guide your eyes and imagination. What’s at the end of the path?
When planning a path, consider both its aesthetic and functional purposes. Wide paths and paths with jogs or curves are for slow strolling — just what’s needed to encourage a prolonged look at a choice planting. A straight shot is more suited from the back door to the vegetable garden, or any other route where footsteps are hurried.
How many people will walk together on a path? Two people — even two intimate people — need a path 4 to 5 feet wide. In any case, a path should be no less than 18 inches wide.
An orderly design of materials in a path can contribute to the formality and order of a garden: square or rectangular pavers butted together, for instance. Random-shaped pavers create a more organic look for an informal garden.