Unity unity is achieved by linking elements and

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Unity Unity is achieved by linking elements and features to create a consistent character in the composition. Unity is sometimes referred to as harmony—the concept of everything fitting together. By comparison, scattered groupings of plants and unrelated garden ornaments are the opposite of unity. Unity is achieved by using dominance, interconnection, unity of three (described below), and simplicity to arrange colors, textures, and form. Although hardscapes and plants can be unified by the blending of similar characteristics, some variety is also important to create interest. The simplest way to create unity is through the use of a design theme or a design style. Design themes and styles have a well-defined set of features that have maintained their popularity over time because they are visually pleasing to many. Unity by dominance Dominance or emphasis is the property of a plant or object that attracts and holds attention, making the object an important feature. The ability of an object to capture attention usually depends on contrast with adjacent objects. A typical example for a garden would be a very brightly colored ceramic pot among green foliage. Dominant features that capture attention are called focal points. Focal points are used to draw attention to a particular location, move the eye around the space, or guide circulation. Emphasis is created through contrast in size, color, form, or texture. Plants that draw attention are often called specimen plants. These are plants with a unique form, size, or texture that stand out from the surrounding plants. Ordinary plants can also be used for emphasis by isolating the plant in a container (Figure 15) or an open space. Purposefully placing plants in this way draws attention to the plant. Specimen plants are usually used to draw attention to entrances, pathways, or statuary. Garden ornaments also work well to attract attention because they are often dramatically different from plant material. Form and color are usually the characteristics that contrast the most with plants. Sculptures, planters, and furniture have forms that are easily recognizable and distinguishable from plants. F I G U R E 1 5 . Emphasis by isolation of plant material in a container Unity by interconnection Interconnection, the concept of physical linkage (touching) of various features, is present in all designs. Although all features are linked to other features, the key is to make the linkage seamless so that the features blend or fit together. Hardscape is important to interconnection because it typically serves to organize and link spaces in the garden. Continuation of a line, such as a path, the edge of a built object, or a defined edge of a plant bed, can create unity through interconnection.
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