Mother Nature as Design Teacher

It's interesting to look at peoples' front yards and backyards. Some have been designed by the owner, others professionally landscaped. Many are great, but others somehow look "wrong".
Perhaps the proportions are incorrect: too few small plants in a sinewy shape clinging to the edge of a large house. Other times it's big boulders and rocks just plunked near the driveway, attempting to make them look natural.
So the question is: how do you make a landscape look as if it just "happened"?
Sometimes you need to observe how Mother Nature did it and the ideas are right before your eyes.

This past weekend we were at up at a friend's cottage and the more I looked around, the more I saw rock formations and plant groupings worth photographing.

Large rocks only look natural if they are buried at least halfway if not two thirds of the way into the ground.

Groups of trees in a front yard look very tidy and formal but here they look very good too, growing where the original seed landed.

Another example of how deeply rocks should be into the ground.

This grouping of a large rock as focal point, with smaller rocks scattered nearby, would probably work best in a rural setting. I loved those little round pockets of vegetation.

Due to the lack of rain, the water level of the lake is down 16"!! I have never seen this many rocks exposed at the end of the Point. But just look at the fabulous composition!

Here are some grasses on the slope of the shore.

The view down the shoreline.

It's amazing what nature can teach you about landscape design. But when I wasn't shooting pictures like crazy, it was lovely relaxing in the summer breeze just gazing out over the lake…...