Low maintenance conversion from a lawn


Garden Design is so difficult for me, but today I thought I found the solution in my neighbours design.
Would it be kosher to just partially mirror their border design, since our pathways are adjacent, and “ imitation is the highest form of flattery”?
I wanted something temporary, so I could renovate the porch.
I could ask mention it to them. My fear of asking is getting more “original” ideas, which would wear me out. I just want to spend little time, and with their design just plant robust year-round type plants, which are low maintenance. Most of my lawn would remain for now. I’d mentioned this type of low maintenance garden to them anyway, in the past. I even left them a schematic of the French drain that they used following a workshop I did around water conservation at Humber College, so I don’t think their plan is original.
I know in academia and business, people are proprietary, even if the rules around intellectual property aren’t in the company policies, but does gardening have an etiquette?
Looking at my time spent with my chiropractor last year, getting the purchases of the plants with this design would save me some visits to the health clinic around groundskeeping and experimenting because I’m reluctant to fall into the DIY trap, since there are competing plants that need more TLC.
The photo is of the margin, to the stones, which I would change to an eco-friendly, low maintenance plant choice. Something about symmetry “tickled” my brain.

The curved entry was inspired from a talk by Wolfgang Bonham, who described it in a Feng Shui context, leaving stress behind as one rounds the bend, to their residence, in his case study at one of his presentations.

Thank you


Thank you for this question.

Garden design can be difficult….but the good news is that you are right. Imitation is not only the highest form of flattery, it will increase the value of both properties. Most design teachers and online courses recommend considering the neighbours’ designs and trying to make yours flow with theirs. This makes for greater unity, which is a key element in design. The symmetry you will create will make the sidewalk much more beautiful. Yes, go for it. Ask the neighbour for names of plants and advice, and save yourself many hours of work and shopping. If s/he is anything like the gardeners in our group, you will make a friend for life. You will both have many admirers making comments for years to come.

All the best.