When planning to construct a personal garden sanctuary, consider the entirety of the environment. Showy flowers may be the first item you think of introducing to your space, but think beyond flowers; trying to appease all five of your senses will bring you a more balanced and complete final result.
Evaluate the need for privacy screening. Take a tour of your land. View buildings and natural attributes of the land with fresh eyes, looking for features that help separate a space from foot traffic and intrusive activity. The addition of living barriers, such as trees and hedges, can work together with well-placed fence panels to give you a refuge that allows you to be alone with your thoughts. Shrubs like rose of Sharon can lend both seclusion and summer color, along with attracting numerous birds and butterflies to your special place.
Consider adding a soothing source of sound to your garden. Auditory screening is as important as visual. A water feature that produces sound, such as a bubbling fountain, can help mask the noise of traffic. The delicate tinkle of wind chimes can act as a gentle reminder to relax.
Attract song birds and butterflies to your space by offering food, water and shelter. Fruit-bearing trees and edible flowers not only encourage wildlife, they provide you a tasty, freshly-picked seasonal treat, and their fragrant flowers will produce a pleasing scent.
Factor in your comfort. Examine your wants, needs and habits to bring personal touches to the space that will help you to relax and unwind. If your location is heavily populated with stinging insects, a screened shelter can protect you from bites, offer shade and allow you to more fully enjoy your garden. If heat is an issue, you may want to add a water feature that allows you to dangle your feet in its cool stream and shade trees for a haven from the sun's rays. If you visit on chilly nights, a small fireplace will add light and warmth.
Furnish your garden. A simple stone bench is all you need for a cool resting spot. More elaborate swings and gliders are available with padded seats and canopy tops for lazy afternoons with a good book. If you plan to write, draw or take in refreshments, you may wish to add a table and outdoor umbrella.