Our long history of fascination with the Moon provides the perfect opportunity to enhance the enjoyment of our gardens at night. With more time to spare from busy lives after dark, a moon-obsession could be the perfect way to unwind and relax, making the most of your downtime to connect with the natural world.
The addition of a garden building or summerhouse to your outdoor space can enhance your moon-watching experience, providing a great outdoor base and storage for equipment and accessories. In our blog, we explore how garden design and facilities can help you to create the ideal ambience and embrace the energising power of Moon.
Earth’s only natural satellite, the Moon orbits our planet every 28 days from an average distance of around 240,000 miles, driving the tides of the sea and making an impact on day length. We know that the Moon has fascinated humanity from the early records of the Greeks, Babylonians and Chinese. Ever since Galileo examined the Moon through a telescope for the first time in 1609, we have longed to get closer to this fascinating sphere. And the Moon landings of 1969 by the Apollo 11 crew are part of all our shared history and culture.
Whether you are a keen astronomer indulging your passion for the night sky, eager to watch wildlife by moonlight, or simply relax and take a break after dark in your own specially curated moon garden, we hope these tips will help.
Setting the scene
As you plan a garden building to stretch your outdoor access beyond daylight hours, think about the types of planting and greenery that will stand out after dark. A sea of white flowers such as hydrangea, Shasta Daisy and Japanese anemone will reflect the light of the full moon, enabling you to navigate around the garden after dark. Choose fragrant plants such jasmine, lilac, or roses to create a sweet-smelling ambience. Night-blooming flower varieties include moonflower, evening primrose, lily, and night-scented stock.
Light reflects well from plants with silvery or grey foliage such as sea holly, cotton lavender and Bluebeard. The densely packed leaves of the mountain agave, dusted with white powder, are illuminated by the faintest light. Plan your planting around your garden design and select bright, white, or reflective surfaces to help illuminate your garden and bounce back the moonlight. Brighten your setting with white fence paint, add Blooma Spar white decorative stones, or create a patio from marble-effect outdoor porcelain slabs. Decking can be painted white or choose a composite material like this Vintage White. Add a trickling rill or other water feature and bring an added dimension of peace and tranquillity to your moonlight garden.
Once you have made decisions about garden design, landscaping, and planting, now is the time to add a summerhouse to really enhance the space. Choose a Scotts’ summerhouse in a light Duck Egg or Putty paint finish to create a striking impression at dusk.
An octagonal summerhouse can be placed in the centre of your outdoor space and looks attractive from every angle. Place it on a circular platform to reflect the Moon’s outline, or add a rotating base, one of Scotts’ specialities, to enable you to follow the Moon’s track across the sky at night. Options include a composite moulded lead or slate-effect roof that will bounce reflect the moonlight.
Create a snug and cosy setting for your nighttime garden adventures by adding comfortable chairs or seating. Scotts offer timber sectional seating that is designed to fit neatly into the joints of each skilfully crafted wall. Hinged seats provide storage for cosy rugs and wraps to keep the chill at bay. Upholstered seat pads are available in a range of fabrics. To complement this theme, choose Kielder Dove Grey loose backrest cushions with Stone seat pads. Ceilings on Scotts summerhouses are lined with off-white fabric.
Add delicate lighting using LED string or spotlights inside and along the path to your summerhouse, guiding your way after sundown. If you do venture into your garden in the small hours, remember to take a torch or keep one hanging on a hook in your summerhouse for easy access.
The Moon has inspired great art such as Van Gogh’s ‘The Starry Night’. Permanently housed at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City since 1941, you won’t get your hands on the original, but a print might provide the inspiration for your moon-gazing summerhouse interior. Perhaps you could mount and display your own moon photos in a frame or on clips.
With so many moon-related decorative items and accessories, it’s a good idea to plan for storage and display space within your garden building. Scotts can add a bay shelf feature with a diamond leaded window through which you might catch the moon peeping.
Our top picks for moon-themed accessories are:
- Levitating moon lamp: the magic of magnets keeps this rotating replica spinning.
- Wall-hanging tapestry: a macrame wall-hanging dreamcatcher, handwoven for a natural aesthetic.
- Moon gazing hare: folklore suggests that that seeing a hare gazing at the moon brings good fortune. Pick up a bronze effect resin model from the National Trust.
- Moon phase print: upload your name and place of birth and you can order a framed print showing the Moon’s phase on the day you were born.
- Star projector or home planetarium: helping you to uncover the secrets of the night sky when the Moon is new.
- Moon phase clock: an attractive wall ‘clock’ provides the inside track if you aim to plant according to the Moon’s phases.
- Moon garlands: there are many styles of decorative bunting in the shape of the Moon and its phases to add interest to your summerhouse and keep the theme alive.
Your garden building or summerhouse provides the perfect environment to enjoy moon-related activities all year round.
Yoga and meditation: choose a summerhouse with enough space to roll out your mat and set yourself up for a meditative nighttime practice that includes moon salutations. Themes relate to the phases, so a new moon signifies self-reflection; the waxing moon inspires creativity and action; the full moon represents insight and intuition; and the waning phase marks a period of harvest and completion.
Astronomy: get familiar with the surface of the moon with a map. The best time to take a look at the detail through binoculars or a telescope is during the first few days after the Moon has reached its first quarter when the lunar craters are displayed to best effect.
If you dream of a home observatory, Scotts can create bespoke summerhouses so ask them to adapt the roof to enable maximum access to the night sky. Check out the NASA website for star-gazing activities and tips to examine the surface of the Moon.
Wildlife watch: any British mammals and insects are nocturnal so spending time out in the garden at night will help you to spot them more easily. Leave food out for hedgehogs and sneak inside your summerhouse to await their arrival. Foxes and badgers are occasionally tempted by treats, and you might even be lucky enough to attract a pine marten. Watch the mesmerising flight of bats and listen out for the distinctive call of the tawny owl with its piercing vision.
Shoot for the moon!
We hope that our ideas for creating your own personalised moonlight garden have inspired you to think about how you could design your outdoor space. Add a premium quality garden building, created and installed by Scotts, and you can look forward to many hours of relaxing night-time encounters.
Give our expert team a call or outline your initial ideas on a contact form and we will be in touch.