A rock garden is an outdoor garden that uses rocks, stones and pebbles as the main elements to decorate. They are usually found in large yards or parks with a number of different terrain conditions.
Image Source: SutherlandLandscape.com
The most common type of rocks used for rock gardens are igneous rock including granite, quartzite, basalt and gneiss. Metamorphic rocks like marble, limestone and slate are also popular because they might be easier to maintain than igneous rocks. Sedimentary rocks such as shale, sandstone and conglomerate can also sometimes be seen in these gardens although this is less common.
Rock gardens became popular during the 19th century after Europeans were exposed to them during their travels across Asia. It was extensively cultivated by British people who wished to replicate the same atmosphere of serenity and contemplation that they had found during their travels in Japan.
A wide range of plants can be grown in rock gardens including alpine plants, succulents, ferns, dwarf trees and shrubs depending on the conditions available. However many gardeners prefer using low-growing or creeping cultivars so that there is more room for the rocks themselves to have center stage instead of being covered up by foliage from other plant varieties.
Decorating rock gardens can make use out of both natural or artificial stones depending on personal preferences although most gardeners believe that using natural stones add more aesthetic value to the garden. Artificial stones are generally cheaper and easier to replace if broken or worn out while natural stone might be harder to find replacements for in case they get damaged or lost.
Image Source: Nargs.org
Rock gardens have a number of benefits that make them very popular not just because of their beauty but also because of how practical they can be for plant lovers who want something different from the usual lawns and flower beds.