Garden Design Destination: Zalipie, Poland

Zalipie, Poland is an old communist village where folk art served the purpose of all folk art – to provide a local community with a common aesthetic and decoration.  But this little town took it a bit further than most in a way that I find interesting and inspiring.

zalipie red chrysanthemums poland garden

Adding paint and specifically the folk art decorative touches to the garden gives such an interesting opportunity to highlight plants.  Imagine the red chrysanthemums, the little ivy and the wispy plant in the corner against a plain white house.  They would seem rather weak, but they come alive when paired with red painted floral themes and the mix makes me think about other design flourishes that could be added to the exteriors of buildings.

zalipie poland garden

The folk art in Zalipie started in the 1800’s when fires were open.  Whitewash for the exterior was used to make patterns on the smoke blackened ceiling.  Enclosed fires and chimneys  eventually caused the patterns to develop into a folkart form that eventually moved from black and white into amazing colors.   This form of peasant art was adopted by all the houses in the village and everything was decorated….even the tree trunks.

painted tree zalipie poland

Certainly, something like this wouldn’t be appropriate in a suburban setting – or really most other places besides in a rural polish town, but I am inspired by the use of pattern and color that I think it can be transplant into a modern home and garden in a way that can make a home and a setting more unique and personal.

found via Steve Handley.

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rochelle greayer

Hi, I'm Rochelle and for 18 years I have worked as a landscape designer, author/writer, and design teacher. I've designed residential and hospitality (for hotels, restaurants, and spas) gardens across the USA and in the UK, Europe and the Middle East. After many years of teaching garden design topics in person, I launched the PITH + VIGOR Boot Camp series in early 2018. Through my blog, social media, and online courses (Garden Design Bootcamp and Planting Design Boot Camp) I aim to help homeowners learn how to confidently design and create home gardens that reflect their own personal and unique style.

2 Comments

  1. Susan Schlenger on January 17, 2011 at 9:51 am

    What creativity! How many times do we try to hide that blank wall…I would love to try some creative painting in these places. Wonderful pictures.

  2. Laguna Dirt on January 17, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    this is utterly charming! i agree, the bold patterns and color really enliven everything, and give it a sense of identity and joy. the primitive style compliments the worn woods and rustic style of the homes there. now i need to decide what to paint on my house, and trees!

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