I am gearing up to finish a few garden projects….one of which is a deck that we dug the footings for last fall. I have gone back and forth on the way to finish the deck. Do I do pressure treated wood that I stain (cheap), or do I invest in a hardwood that will be less maintenance (expensive)?I have obsessed so much that I even had an architect friend write a whole article about the pros and cons of all the decking options.
This garden in southern California, was designed by Shirley Bovshow for a client with a small budget (at lease for the size of the work needed). So, the initial vision for beautiful gazebos and country elegance with all the bells and whistles was ultimately fulfilled with budget friendly versions.
As the summer heats up, I thought I would try to inspire you to head outside and get your hands dirty with some inspirational and aspirational garden ‘before and after’ projects.The first is landscape designer Andrew Grossman’s garden. He shares the progress of his garden at his blog titled ‘A Year in My Garden’ — even though he admits that this garden was fully 12 years in the making.
Let me introduce you to Stevie who lives in Vancouver. Since 2004 Stevie has been transforming the back garden into something wonderful and taking readers of Garden Therapy along for the ride.Some basic background info about the garden transformation from Stevie:“While there is a wonderful mountain view from the deck, we decided to build a low, enclosed patio to gain privacy from the neighbours and some outdoor living space.
People are quite often very surprised at the cost of putting in an outdoor living space and garden. Generally to create a patio, planting areas around it and paths to access it, you might be looking at paying the same as if you were doing small kitchen renovation. It makes sense since you really are creating another room on your house but it also makes sense to go the DIY path in the garden….
What is a garden designer without a dirt level garden to do? Well of course, make the most of the available 150 sq ft balcony. Jenny Peterson, who lives and works in Austin, Texas transformed her ‘L’ shaped balcony from a mish-mash of outdoor ‘stuff’ to a cohesive and relaxing southern inspired place for her to enjoy the outdoors.
I am busy preparing to move my indoor gardening efforts outside and part of that means that I get to reclaim my sun porch for the spring through autumn season. In the winter it serves as my makeshift greenhouse for all the pots and container plantings that come in for the season. This year, part of that transition was getting the place organized and re-working some furniture.A friend gifted me a sideboard that was in relatively rough shape.
I had another post in mind today until a good friend called to tell me about her planting success. She and her husband are trying to move – they have found and made an offer on a new house, but needed to sell theirs. We all know that the market is still in a funny place and trying to recover, so they opted to pull out all the stops and plant a St. Joseph statue to try and ensure house selling success.I had never heard of planting a St. Joseph as a real-estate superstition, have you?
Carolyn Chadwick is a master of making beautiful feminine gardens — one of my all time favorite dream gardens was designed by her and it resides in the Greek isles. This garden, which also brings to mind Mediterranean delights, resides in Cologne, Germany.Not only is the design beautiful, but I feel I must point out a few details that make this a real masterpiece.
Steve Martino is arguably one of the most exciting (IMO) landscape designers currently working. Even though he works in a climate that’s nearly the polar opposite of mine (Arizona — and I am in New England), he is on my shortlist of colleagues that I study for inspiration and ideas. This project makes me want to pick up and move southwest — to a deserted grocery store.
As the last of the daffodils, tulips and other spring bulbs fade away, there is a natural desire to clean up the remaining shriveled flowers and the inevitable floppy leaves that were so welcome just a few weeks ago, but which now appear old and messy. But don’t do it!! Here is why. Bulbs need that greenery because as the flowering ends, those greens stay on and continue to collect energy from the sun, feeding it back into the bulb.
Starting a garden from scratch in a brand new house is a challenging task that I think is often underappreciated. Builders frequently leave lots of building waste, and they tend to scrape off topsoil, compact things, and leave upturned subsoil. Because of this, massaging the landscape of a newly built home into something beautiful can be harder than it looks.
Rebecca and Staffan have been hard at work building an extraordinary terraced garden in Sweden since 2007. In such a short time they have carved out six terraces and built an unimaginable series of walls to hold it all in place. And then there is this one (comparatively) small piece — an outdoor kitchen with an extraordinary view.And then the glorious after – if I had this kitchen I think I would want to brave the Swedish winters to cook out all year long.
I love this true and honest account of using wood cuts for path making. As a professional I’ve never had the guts to try it because, if what happened on Jen’s first run happened in a client’s garden, well, clearly I would deserve to be fired. So I am grateful that Jen shared the ups and downs of her path project, and am curious as she comes in the the spring how the latest version faired.
This type of corner is so common in so many backyards. Unruly, untouched and unloved, it is just not very friendly. This transformation is satisfyingly sensitive to the tree that shades the area and provides structure and turns something quite unappealing into something that is very sophisticated. See the step-by-step transformation below.1) Paint fence and the wall white – this cleans up messiness and brightens the whole space. It also unifies the disparate vertical surfaces.
With a long weekend ahead and a summer full of travel and fun in the past, I think it is high time I finally wrap up a few of those projects that I meant to finish earlier in the season. There is still time, and I am taking inspiration from these four outdoor furniture makeover projects…First up, old and tired becomes new again with a little TLC and some new accessories.