GARDEN AND PLAN v3Despite the vagaries of the summer weather its still a great time to get out into the garden and if you understand the concept of traditional Feng Shui you know that this will also have an impact on your life in far greater ways than just having something pretty to look at.

To most people Feng Shui is considered to be about furniture placement, relationship positions and wind chimes but its roots are far more essential to real life and it’s a powerful way to identify the energy around us. It isn’t restricted to just the inside of buildings. In fact at least 70% of the effect of Feng Shui is about outside buildings, so getting the energy right outside your home or work place can have a fundamental impact of many aspects of your life.

One of the reasons for this is because geographical directions relate to specific family members so if, for example, your garden is shaped in such a way as to have the south part missing, the “lead” male of the house is unlikely to get the recognition for his work, may not want to spend time in the house and might have problems relating to his head. If the north is missing then the “lead” female may be out of the house a lot or have stomach issues. (Each position relates to specific body parts in Chinese philosophy.)

I was talking to a friend recently about a holly tree in my garden and I realised that it was a classic example of the impact of gardening on my family life:

It started when I was talking about how while I was busy dealing with other people’s Feng Shui I had forgotten to keep up to date with my own house (a case of cobblers’ children if ever there was one!) and it was only when one of my children’s behaviour had become more challenging that I took a closer look.

It turned out that a holly tree growing close to the house had started to press against the corner of the house in the position relating to the first son. My poor boy was really feeling pressured by all the new things going on in his life and was reacting angrily (the anger was caused by the prickly aspect of the holly).

Luckily, my husband was happy to take down the offending tree. However, he dumped the whole tree in the garden with a view to disposing of it “some time”. Unfortunately he left it all in the “father” position. He woke up the next day feeling really under the weather and dare I say it extremely grumpy!

Over the next couple of days I started to notice how my grumpy boy had started to calm down again. I hadn’t mentioned anything to him about the tree because he doesn’t need to know. Real Feng Shui is about the energy around us and how we use it but you don’t have to believe in it for to affect you.

The key point though is that what surrounds us has a greater effect than the purely esoteric. Landforms and architectural shapes will impact our lives regardless of whether this is our intention or not.

Some Do’s and Don’ts

  • Be careful where you put a water feature – water has a powerful impact on finances. This can be good or bad. If you have a pond in the wrong place or water flowing away from your house then you are wasting your money!
  • The best position for a water feature is in the north or the southeast. You should have moving water and it should flow towards the house.
  • It’s a good idea to ensure that the north of your garden has attractive flowers as this area relates to the “lead” female or mother of the house. It’s best if you don’t have children’s play equipment here as they may not listen to their mother!
  • The south (relating to the father) should have stronger planting such as evergreen shrubs or conifers – wispy planting such as bamboos or grasses can be too insubstantial.
  • Large trees or shrubs can block the energy of a person. If you are single and the position relating to your partner is blocked there may be no room for him or her to appear.

If, for example, you are a family consisting of a couple and 2 girls, look at the table below and assess the positions in your garden relating to mother, father and first and second daughters. You should then ensure that you keep these areas attractive and uncluttered and use the other positions for compost heaps etc as they will have less effect on you.

Family Member

Position Outside





2nd Daughter (Middle)


2nd Son (Middle)


First Son

North East

First Daughter

South West

3rd Son (Youngest)

North West

 3rd Daughter (Youngest)

South East

– A form of this article was originally posted in Sussex Pages – see more at: