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Lawn & Garden Decorations

A truly beautiful lawn or garden contains not only trees, shrubs, and plants arranged in a pleasing design, but also a tasteful selection of antiques and decorative accessories placed to enhance the viewers’ enjoyment. These accessories can be used to create focal points that draw the eye to important parts of the garden, or they can be placed as surprises that only reveal themselves when the visitor has turned a corner or come to the end of a path. Although these items should never overwhelm the space, they can be used in any size garden, from the smallest urban backyard to the grandest of rural estates.

Lanterns, statues, sundials, and columns are commonly used as sculpture in the garden to add height. All sorts of interesting architectural fragments can also be used as sculpture. Weathervanes draw the eye up toward the roof line. Bird baths and birdhouses attract the soothing presence of feather friends. Fountains add the relaxing sound of water and can mask unwanted background noises. Old rain barrels also collect useful water. Sections of metal or wooden fencing can make attractive and practical trellises, as can old ladders. Metal and stone urns are wonderful planters. Other interesting containers, such as window boxes and stone or cement troughs, are also extraordinary when planted. The imaginative gardener can use a variety of antiques and accessories to make the garden a more creative space.

Genuine antique pieces tend to be more expensive than decorative accessories, unless the item is unique or specially commissioned artwork. Very valuable antiques should usually not be visible from the front of the property unless they are behind locked fences and gates. Make sure that the item you choose can withstand the weather if it will stay in the garden all year. Less durable pieces should be stored indoors during seasons when the weather is extremely hot or cold. Plants and dirt should be removed from containers that are not frost proof when the temperature drops below freezing; most fountains should be drained.

Garden antiques and decorative accessories can be purchased from antique dealers who specialize in them and from better garden
centers. Antique shows, fairs and, occasionally even flea markets are other excellent sources. Many dealers have online sites. Whenever you buy an antique, make sure you get a receipt with a complete description that includes the item’s age.

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