Modern websites rely on strict hierarchy of pages to help users navigate. This uses central pages to send users back to once they’ve completed reading an article. However, this rigidity does not optimize for serendipitous discovery and many important pages on a website can be inadvertently orphaned (either because it doesn’t fit neatly into a hierarchy or users don’t know to look for it).
Digital gardens on the other hand eschew strict navigation and rely on hypertext linking to allow a wide range of paths to content in a self-directed way. This comes with a trade off of overall coherence between content nodes.
Read ‘The limits of structure’ by East Gate.