Garden ornaments can add splendor to your garden. They can create an atmosphere of grace and serenity. Adding garden ornaments makes you feel like taking walks in your garden, stopping to rest and enjoying the moments. They can help separate your tranquil spaces or bring them together.

You decide. Garden ornaments come in all shapes and sizes just like we do.

In many European cemeteries, sections are created for musicians, artists, war, heroes dancers, politicians and so on. It helps to identify where you are as well as to honor them.

The statuary that exists in these cemeteries has become a lost art. What a treat to visit and stroll among such treasures. In our garden we prefer statuary with a little age and history. Therefore we seek out auctions, in the hopes of finding special, “one of a kind” that may no longer exist in the masses.

However, many quality molds still exist today and you should take your time in your selection. The better the mold the finer the detail. Keep this in mind as you browse through garden centers, auction houses, and flea markets. 

Some really fine reproductions exist, and in our garden we have a bit of both. It’s like mixing real diamonds with costume jewelry. If you have one exquisite piece everyone assumes all your stuff is the real thing. This is key in decorating as well.

We all have a budget that we have to work within. Start with an important piece of statuary. Splurge a little here. You won’t regret it. Your important piece sets that stage and even if you can’t afford to add another piece for a few more years, your one “Grande Dame” will serve you well.

If you have a small garden, your statuary can be your centerpiece and you may not need another. Garden maidens, graceful figures holding flowers, bird figures, fairy tale figures, whatever is your own personal style. You will find lots to choose from.

Garden urns of cast iron or cement become important in your garden. You can decide depending on where you place them and what you plant in them. Using urns in pairs creates a nice balance in your garden. We have urns in varying sizes and shapes.

Cast iron ones usually have handles but that doesn’t make them any easier to move around. Also keep in mind that cast iron urns retain heat and on really hot days require a lot of watering. The flowers in these urns will be the first to wilt. Water down the outside of the urns as well making sure you water long enough for water to reach the bottom of the urn.

Of course it’s best never to water during the heat of the day. Morning or early evening is best, and early evening watering can be a tranquil experience and a nice wind down time of day for you.

We love the way coleus look in our urns. They gain quite a bit of height and lushness as the summer months wear on. We also plant coleus in the ground around our Balustrade for an added display of color. Cast iron urns are usually painted green, black or white. You can repaint them changing the color over the years but the cement ones are best left to mother nature. Start to paint them and they will eventually start to peel.

Ornaments that attach to walls are a nice romantic touch as well. A wall fountain or a pair of sconces are charming additions. Bird baths are also available in cast iron and cement. We found a bird bath at a flea market that was so deep that we decided it was better suited as a planter. 

Bird baths a bound everywhere in our garden and our three tiered fountain attracts birds and they love to dip in there. Your trickling fountain will also attract birds to your garden.

We have three large free standing Victorian bird houses that our handy man built copying a design we saw in a Victorian magazine. These bird feeders move around from year to year. They are almost six feet tall and highly visible where ever they are placed. During the winter, I arrange them so that I can watch the birds come down to feed from my up-stairs bedroom window as well as the kitchen window downstairs. A perfect winter day for me is baking biscuits while watching the birds gather outside the kitchen window.

I keep my garden Journal on the upstairs bedroom windowsill. This proves most handy for me. First thing when I get up in the morning I can look out and get down what wonders took place while I was sleeping. Then just before sunset, I pick it up again to record the birds that love to come down at that time of day. 

My family of cardinals always seem to enjoy a late afternoon feeding. One winter I counted six at the feeder all at once. That was a “red letter” day. No pun intended.

I keep the bird seed in bins in our mud room. It’s best if you can keep your bird seed covered and also not feed off the ground during winter. One winter we counted twenty two mice in the pantry. 

Of course other garden ornaments include out door structures as well. A gazebo is about as big an ornament as you can get and I’ll bet no one else on your block will have one. You can buy pre-assembled Gazebos through catalogs and if you live outside the city you can find them for sale without too much trouble.

I consider trellises, gates, benches, bird houses, and signs all a part of your garden ornamentation. Wood chimes, dinner bells, plant stands, planters, flower carts, wagon wheels, wheel barrels, the list is endless. Define your particular style and then follow through on it.

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Last Updated March 19, 2008.

Copyright 2008 Michael M Smith.