By "neat," do you mean tidy and clean, or do you mean cool and fun?
Many years ago I took a course on the history of landscape design in the Department of Landscape Architecture at Cal. Polytech. Univ. Pomona from John Lyle, a Fellow in the ASLA. As I recall, he taught that the concept of the ornamental garden with walls around it reminded the Medieval people of the Garden of Eden, an ideal and orderly place. We are talking about the gardens of the royalty or very wealthy, not the cottage garden. The various flowers had symbolic associations to them. We are all familiar with the white lily having to do with the Virgin Mary. Books of art history explain what these different flowers and plants are thought to mean. The Crusaders had recently returned to Europe, bringing with them plants from the Mediterranean, subtropical plants, that were added to gardens to remind the pious of the Holy Land, and allusions to Bible places and themes. Designing your garden to be symmetrical and orderly is an answer to the disorderly and frightening times they lived in?
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