Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Jane Austen

"but had I place to new fashion, I should not put myself into the hands of an improver.  I would rather have an inferior degree of beauty, of my own choice, and acquired progressively.  I would rather abide by my own blunders than by his."  (Obvious what Jane Austen thinks of this character!)
"YOU would know what you were about of course--but that would not suit ME.  I have no eye or ingenuity for such matters, but as they are before me; and had I a place of my own in the country, I should be most thankful to any Mr. Repton who would undertake it, and give me as much beauty as he could for my money; and I should never look at it, till it was complete."   (And we know what Jane Austen thinks of this character!)
.
From, Mansfield Park, by Jane Austen
.
Garden & Be Well,   XO Tara
.
The flower?  In my winter garden.  Living history.  A camellia of course.

Monday, January 30, 2012

How To Get It Free

Thrift store yesterday, Donald Pliner shoes, 99 cents.
 Saving, $299.00, minimum, they've bought me
several tons of gravel, stone & a few boxwood.
.
Girl math.
.
But it really works.  All my dear lady clients get it.  ALL.
.
Husbands groan.
.
Garden & Be Well,      XO Tara
.
No, this isn't sexist.  I know exactly how boy math works.  Pics from Ann Mashburn's home via Atlanta Homes magazine.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

How Tiny Landscape Rooms Live BIG

Paley Park, New York City, NY, below, via.
A tiny landscape living BIG.
.
I've pondered why some little landscapes, including  mine, live HUGE.
.
Yes, seriously, I've pondered & mulled & considered & strained to figure it out.
.
It's the sky.
.
With little space you still have infinite ownership of the sky.
.
Use it.
.
Garden & Be Well,      XO Tara
.
Have seen Paley Park, in pics, several times thru the years.  Takes my heart each time.  Perhaps I'll get there some day!  Thank you Janelle McCulloch Library Of Design for posting this garden haven.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Historically Siting Bulbs

Hillary Clinton had 'intellectual exercise' conversations with Eleanor Roosevelt.  Remember those headlines? 
 Oddly, I got it.  Even then.
Last month I sited thousands of bulbs after "consulting the genius of the place."  I've spoken with landscapes for decades.  
.
This garden, above pics, has a historic home with little but its pecan orchard intact.
.
Next year anyone seeing the drifts of daffodils will think they've been there a century.
.
Garden & Be Well,      XO Tara
.
Many of you have this skill, "consulting the genius of the place", but don't trust it.  It's why I listen so hard to landscape questions.  The answers are already in the question. 
.
Yes, Alexander Pope...Consult the genius of the place......

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Landscape Design: What Era Will You Choose?

Whitlow House ca. 1830.  Keeping the views,
 and the house rustic are intentional.  Wanting places of repose,

outside of time.
.
Garden & Be Well,          XO Tara
.
Pics taken at a project last week.  Landscape Design is about designing elements of TIME & PLACE.  Received a delightful comment about my home/garden this month, "You've really created your own little world, haven't you?"
.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Intimacy In Large Spaces

A folly in the landscape.  (aka, a one-room cabin.)

Light from the landscape a palpable force.
.
Beyond the door, acreage in open meadow & wildwood.
.
Design intimacy into landscapes with acreage.  
.
Let Nature reign in open meadow & wildwood.
.
Garden & Be Well,        XO Tara
.
Pic taken at a jobsite last week.   I wish you could walk thru this door, into the acreage.  Know the spirit of this land.  The stewardship of its owner, dancing with Providence.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Lunch In The Conservatory

Friends for over a decade, we've kept up for too many years via ambient community, aka mutual friends & social media.
 We had lunch in my Conservatory yesterday.  Each of us brought to tears several times during meandering conversation.  Happy tears.  Tears of knowing.  Tears of bearing witness.
 Mostly laughter.  And buzzing with energy.
.
Grace comes unbidden, and by nurture.  Yes, you want a Conservatory in your landscape.
.
Garden & Be Well,            XO Tara
.
Smallest Conservatory footprint, if you have a choice, is 12' x 18'.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Fog & Rain Dreary?

A local garden center posted on their Facebook page today about the weather (fog, wet, gray) being dreary and we should come in to buy a houseplant.  Really?  Puppet Barbuda knows good Landscape Design has no dreary days.  Returned moments ago from her garden Puppet Barbuda saw:
 Laura, above, following from inside.  Not so cute when she hangs from the chandeliers.  (Notice the terra cotta sun?  It's a wall sundial hiding a faucet.)
 With Ivy 'Gold Heart', at the front door.  Puppet Barbuda is in earnest about no dreary days.  Fell in love with this Ivy while studying Landscape Design in England.

 Sasanqua's, above, still in heavy bloom.  Native honey bees gather pollen all year in my landscape.
 Hellebores, above, opening.
 Apples & peaking gold dwarf conifer.
Crazily, with a warm January, fall leaves still falling.
.
Dreary?
.
Plenty of color.
.
Garden & Be Well,       XO Tara
.
Was in my robe/slippers getting these pics a few minutes ago.  Laura followed me, from inside, around the entire house while photographing.  Wish I had time for more pics....

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Spool Bed In Garden Light

Spool bed, rough-hewn historic cabin, and
 natural light.
Flowing from the garden.
.
Do you do this too, design your landscape for interior lighting effects?
.
Amazingly this light, above,  is only minutes before the gloaming.
.
Garden & Be Well,    XO Tara
.
Pics taken at a project last Thursday.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Martha Washington Table In The Garden

Martha Washington never knew how many would appear at her dinner table.  Extra tables, boards placed on sawhorses, were often set-up in the garden.  With a cloth of course.
 Yesterday, working in the Ancient Orchard we needed a table.
 Quickly, the guys had our Martha Washington table set-up.  It had been nearby in the potager.
 We were siting fruit trees.
We did use the hammer, keeping invoice sheets from blowing away.
.
Obvious, more than 1 Martha Washington table is needed in her garden.
.
G*d is smiling, these are FUN needs.
.
Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
.
Pics taken yesterday.  Notice my basket in the top pics?  34 years old.  English white willow.  Came from Neiman-Marcus in Dallas, Texas during their Christmas Fortnight event.  Sales lady didn't want to sell it, it was holding ornaments.  La-ti-da, acquired my target.  Yes, the lady got huffy.  Very huffy.    

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Historic Southern: Flying Buttress

Downtown Atlanta, below, a former cotton warehouse.  Swoon yet?  The Flying Buttress !!

 Copy.  It's the 1st rule of Landscape Design.
MY flying buttress, above.  Though it's on a client's property, and she did pay for the lovely bricks, ca. 1899, from Milledgeville, Ga, capitol of Georgia during the Civil War, and she did pay for the labor, and, and, and, honestly, I am in love with this Landscape Jewelry !
.
Garden & Be Well,         XO Tara
.
Orchard not complete yet.  Fruit trees start going in tomorrow.  Gates this year.  

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

How To Open A Front Porch

Gravel to the walls, evergreens (few), no rails on the porch, & a fabulous light, below.
 Exactly how I described The Cottage project, below, to my contractor.  Before I ever saw the pic, above, via Greige Design.
 Porch rails will be removed, below, and stone steps added to all sides.  Foundation meatballs removed,
gravel spread, light fixture installed.  Bricks painted, shutters added to all sides (new color chosen) storm door removed and a potager nearby, it was requested and there is very little good light elsewhere.
.
Love this type of work.  Tight budget, big impact, little input.  Ironically, the biggest improvement will be removing the foundation meatballs.  The gravel?  Huge impact, and laughably one of the cheapest ingredients.
.
Garden & Be Well,   XO Tara
.
No use at present for the iron rail.  Cannot wait to discover which project NEEDS it !

Monday, January 2, 2012

Cottage Inspiration: Dining Room Walls

The Cottage, ca. 1940, has wallpapered dining room walls, painted red, with little light.
Tiny budget too.  A few days ago, inspiration via Greige Design, a bead board wall with plates, above.
.
The ANTICIPATION of creating the walls is palpable.  Using Benjamin-Moore HC Lancaster Whitewash with white plates and silver plated platters.
.
Soon, The Cottage will have a neo-butler's pantry belonging to a much larger estate.  It's dining room where the 'help' dines.  (Rather obvious I watched Downton Abbey last nite on PBS.)
.
Along with mission statement, narrative & back story inhabit this sweet project.
.
Garden & Be Well,      XO Tara