Gardeners spend a lot of time creating visual impacts with plant life. Flowers in the spring and summer, and colorful foliage in the fall and winter, plus other dynamic foliage and shapes year round can create wonderful design elements in the garden.
But plants aren’t the only things that can please the eye. One way to tie different elements of the garden together, fill in empty space, and define different garden areas is creative use of stonework, particularly mosaic patterns.
Stone doesn’t lose its color with the changing seasons, and so it can offer your garden different focal points as the seasons change. Maybe in the summer, the color peeks out from your lush flower beds, but in the winter when things are resting, it can offer you a colorful reminder of coming spring.
You may be nodding your head, already thinking of creating patterns in your garden, or you may be thinking “I’m not an artist!” The good news is that whether you are capable of imagining elaborate patterns, or simply laying different colors of stone in a straight line, mosaic and stone tiles will still provide a dynamic visual impact.
We’ve gathered a list of different garden projects ranging from extremely simple, to elaborate art that will take weeks to complete. These include a path created from painted brick, to a life-sized stone musical band, to a garden that is completely stone, no plant life involved.
Our favorite projects are simple, but beautiful stepping stone pattens that allow visitors to stop and examine surrounding plant life up close. They don’t require any artistic skill, simply the ability to lay stones in a repeating pattern.
We won’t lie, however; if you can pull it off, the mosaic armchair would be the perfect spot for early morning coffee and a book!
1. Rainbow Brick Path
The easiest project to liven up a garden would be painting bricks in many different colors and arranging them into a path. This is easy enough that the whole family can get involved and requires minimal effort to finish.
2. Colorful Mosaic Stepping Stone
Source: Ultimate Christoph
Slightly more time intensive, but definitely magnifying the wow factor is a mosaic stepping stone. It uses colorful stones, tiles, and jewels in a concentric flower pattern for a pop of color in the grass.
Take your mosaic art to the next level: 3D. This statue of a lizard is adorned with blue, yellow, orange, and green tile and placed in the perfect place to catch the sun.
4. Understated Fish
Need something less wacky? These fish, reminiscent of ancient tile work, decorate a stone patio that is also home to a bird bath. Although the fish and surrounding stone are neutral colors, it still makes a big impact.
5. Hidden Details
If you don’t have a large space to dedicate to stonework, you can still have pops of the trend in your garden. This pot is adorned with a small, square tile border, giving it visual interest.
6. Geometric Table Tile work
Sometimes the impact lies in the color. Here, the round table is accented by small square tile set in a simple line without regard to pattern. White and cream tiles, and a few patterned tiles, offset bolder colors.
7. Patterned Stone Paths
Source: Home Esthetics
For bigger impact, plan a pattern directly into your garden path. In one, circular wooden slices of different sizes are arranged into a stepping stone pattern. In another, larger stones are placed with small geometric and concentric mosaics. The last is a bold repeating pattern that mimics water.
8. Potted Mosaic
Bring the mosaic pattern indoors and out with flower pots. White grout accents colorful tile patterns made with different sizes and shapes of tile, and a few jewels. The biggest impact is grouping several pots together for a flower arrangement.
9. A sprinkle of flowers
Simple stone paths can be dressed up by sprinkling visual elements among the stones. Colorful stone flowers, and smaller stones of different sizes and shapes arranged in flower shapes, mimic fallen petals.
10. Go Big or Go Home
Love the mosaic trend? Consider making your entire garden a mosaic work of art. Here, an artist has used materials in all shapes, sizes, colors, and textures to create a magnificent stone garden.
11. Mosaic Mushrooms
Love the look mushrooms popping up in your garden after a rain? Go one better with mosaic toadstools. Use one to create a focal point in a garden spot, or group them together like this to showcase different colors and patterns.
12. Colorful Birdbath
Attract birds to your garden by decorating their bath in colorful stones. This birdbath is bordered in bright red while blue and green stones that mimic water decorate the inside of the bowl. Two stone birds bathe in the center.
13. Floral Patio Nook
Another example of big patterns, this patio is set apart from the rest of the garden by a large, red, stone flower pattern. It serves the same function as a good rug does for a room indoors, pulling together and defining the space.
14. Accent Shapes
Using plain smooth stones, you can create small pictures to accent a path or wall in your garden. These pictures of a red heart, blue heart, and bear paw look like stained glass patterns.
15. Rock Portrait
Source: The Mixed Company
For an even bigger impact, and some serious art credibility, use rock and tile to create a large art deco portrait like this picture. The woman peeks out from under her hat in the center of a garden arrangement.
16. Circles and succulents
This garden uses monochromatic circle patterns to create large stepping stones in the middle of a succulent garden. Not only do the stones look beautiful, but they make it possible to inspect the ground cover easily.
17. Upcycled Cinderblock Planter
Plain cinderblocks get a major facelift with a mosaic pattern. The style uses different shades of blue for a classic mosaic look that resembles water. Placed together, they make a beautiful square planter.
18. Mosaic Chair
Source: Helios Art Glass
Find a comfy place in your garden for this oversized mosaic chair. Not only is the chair itself a work of art, but it is covered in a beautiful landscape portrait with animals, fish, and small houses.
19. Mosaic Art Installation
If you have the artistic skills, and the garden space, you can create a large scale art project like this one. A piano and animal bench invite you to come and play for the mosaic band to the right.
20. Stained Glass Window Blocks
Source: Show Case Mosaics
Mosaic tile can also be used to create pictures with a stained glass feel. Here, the artist used blocks of color to create pictures like a red flower, a sunflower, and a dynamic red and black flower picture.