Design your garden in Scandinavian style – Tips & Suggestions

Natural, timeless and simple – this is the best way to describe the Scandinavian style. In addition to your own four walls, the garden can also be designed in this way.

Design your garden in a Scandinavian style - how to give your garden the Nordic shine
© lstudio –

A red house with white windows and a simple elegance in the garden – this is how you can often see it in the Scandinavian countries. This natural style with simple furnishings has long since established itself in living rooms. Now it is also the turn of the gardens. But what are the typical features of Scandinavian gardens? If you don’t want to travel to Sweden, Norway or Finland and get your own impression of it, you will find the most important characteristics here.

Typically Scandinavian

If you want to furnish your garden in Scandinavian style, you should pay attention to these characteristics:

  • straightforwardness
  • naturalness
  • minimalism
  • bright colors

In the Nordic countries you rarely see meticulously mown lawns or accurately cut plants. There everything is rather left to nature. What must be mentioned in addition to naturalness, however, is the practical benefit, especially in relation to the plant world.

5 design tips for a Scandinavian garden

Tip 1: Ornamental plants

Garden Scandinavian furnishings - Shrub bed
© AnnaReinert –

Of course it is also green and blooming in the far north. The various plants provide contrasting spots of colour in the simple and simple garden. However, the Scandinavians attach great importance to ease of care. The plants should be able to grow freely. The most suitable ones are for ornamental plants:

or sturdy trees like:

But be careful! Make sure that the garden does not look overgrown in the end. So you should plan your plants carefully. How you proceed is up to you. You can create single rose beds or perennial beds as well as mix them with each other. All is permitted what pleases. The main thing is that you have a colourful variety of plants, because this is typical of Scandinavia.

Tip 2: Useful plants

Garden Scandinavian furnishings - Herb garden
© Floydine –

Of course, every Scandinavian garden also has useful plants, as well as herbs, fruit trees and berry bushes. But most important to them are herb gardens. This requires only little space, hardly any maintenance, but you get different spices for cooking. Optimally suitable for this are e.g:

Tip 3: Deco-Elemtente

Garden Scandinavian furnishings - Deco
© Lars Johansson –

Every garden design naturally includes various decorative elements. However, these should only be used discreetly. Here, too, naturalness plays an important role. Instead of kitschy garden gnomes or other Schnick Schnack, choose minimalist wooden accessories such as benches, fences, old unused ladders, lanterns, etc… In the best case these accessories also have a practical use.

In addition to wood, concrete is also typically Scandinavian. For plants there are for example plant tubs in concrete optics, as it offers. These planters are available in small sizes as well as in XXL. For example, you could use a large bucket to create optimum privacy protection on the terrace. These concrete planters also come with a 10-year guarantee on frost and UV resistance.

You can also use concrete to make some accessories yourself, such as bird troughs, garden paving slabs, small lanterns or even fountains. A selection of many step-by-step instructions can be found on, for example.

Decorative elements made of Corthen steel are also currently popular. This is a weatherproof structural steel, which impresses particularly by its rostoptik and the long durability.

Tip 4: Garden furniture

Garden Scandinavian furnishings - Garden furniture
© by-studio –

You will not find a terrace or garden without comfortable and stylish furniture in Scandinavia. In keeping with the colourful houses with white window and door frames, Scandinavians like to choose white chairs and tables made of wood, preferably spruce or pine. This spreads harmony and fits perfectly into the overall picture. If you already have a comfortable wooden seating set, you can also paint it white yourself. So you can save money on new garden furniture.

Those who are still looking for typical Scandinavian garden furniture should pay attention to the following points:

  • clear lines
  • no embellishments
  • simple elegance
  • timeless models

Tip 5: Lighting

Garden Scandinavian furnishings - Lighting
© n_balitskaya –

In the far north the summers are rather short and the winters long. But you don’t have to be deterred by that. The Scandinavians simply make themselves comfortable with many wonderful light accents and sit outside together even on cooler evenings. On the terrace in particular, optimally selected lighting creates an atmospheric ambience. Whether storm lanterns, glass bowls, discreetly selected lanterns, lanterns – there are no limits to your imagination. However, they should fit into the overall picture.

By the way, it also looks very inviting if you already provide your entrance with light accents. For me personally, solar lanterns and lanterns have paid off. So I don’t have to sneak around the house every night turning on candles.

Don Burke

I am Don Burke, one of the authors at My Garden Guide.  I am a horticulturist that cultivates, grows, and cares for plants, ranging from shrubs and fruits to flowers. I do it in my own garden and in my nursery. I show you how to take care of your garden and how to perform garden landscaping in an easy way, step by step.I am originally from Sydney and I wrote in local magazines. Later on, I have decided, more than two decades ago, to create my own blog. My area of specialization is related to orchid care, succulent care, and the study of the substrate and the soil. Therefore, you will see many articles dedicated to these disciplines. I also provide advice about how to improve the landscape design of your garden.

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