'Rules' for placing stones
I want to convert my garden into a Japanese garden. I've read a few books on this, because I want to understand the Japanese design principles. But there are still lots of things I'm not sure about.
I've read that the first thing to do is to decide the location of the stones in the garden. The books all talk about the importance of placing stones in groups of 3 or 5, in triangular arrangements. Obviously this is very important where the stones are highly visible, for example if they are in a Zen-style garden, set in gravel.
My question is: should the same rules apply in a garden that is going for a more natural feel, where the stones are partly obscured by the plants? (I want a garden that is similar in style to a tea-garden, with the feel of a path leading through wild countryside.)
Thanks for your help.