Showing posts with label Curb Appeal. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Curb Appeal. Show all posts

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Front Door: Changing a Few Things

'There you go again', said during a much earlier debate.  Architecture, below, with a big fat garage, teensy front door, and a room at the end to finish the story.  I lived in one of these homes for 30 years, the entire neighborhood stuffed with them.  Built in the 80's a few newer neighborhoods outlawed the style in their deed restrictions.  Why?  Not street friendly, not conducive to neighbors knowing their neighbors, hulking garages with their landing strips dominate the entire neighborhood, front doors entered from their service court, not thru the 'garden'.  Very little, friendly.
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No worries, all easy fixes.  Remember, I had 30 years of this particular game.
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First, bravo the style, below, of front door.  Using a ubiquitous 6 panel door would lower the roof height. The long bottom panel, below, heightens the space, then the windows add a warm welcome with a bit more height, wonderful.  Have changed many front doors this way thru the years.
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Beyond this point there be dragons, early map makers wrote at the edges of their maps.
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First dragon I will completely ignore, it is so obvious, the huge conifer.  If you say it must be kept, ok.  Move it closer to the house, and keep it a bonsai espalier against the wall.  Learn how to do it properly, and it will be a pleasant few minutes each year.
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Next dragon, faux stone pavers are designed much too narrowly.  Total function, zero form.  Add more faux stone pavers.  Left of the front path, between drive/front walk, add stone pavers entirely where there is now mulch and those ornamental grass looking things, from house to front step.  Add more faux stone pavers to the right of the path, from the second front step, to the front door.  Why?  Creates a wider foyer, instead of this pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey front door & path.  In addition, instead of a narrow rigid walking path to the front door you've opened up a large landing.  Incredibly affordable too, most big box stores sell these faux stone pavers, and unskilled labor, aka you, can install them nicely.  Hint, if you are doing faux stone pavers yourself, always pull a string.  Always.
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Dragon- of- flat is next.  How to 3-D the walls at the front door?  Add a bell to the wall, preferably to the right of the door.  Either historic or artisan, and scaled properly.  Example, at bottom.
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Dragon downspout, another common issue.  But whoa, the white downspout at left corner.  This situation a bit of an exception.  Normally, paint downspouts copper color.  Here, the white house trim, tight space is all encompassing.  A lot going on with horizontal and vertical white trim, a mosh pit.  Boldly creating an exception, I would only paint the section of downspout, copper color, fronting the brick wall.  Why?  The rest of that downspout is blending with white eve and white vertical trim.  Will include the electrical socket with this dragon, at the left of the front door in the brick, paint it copper color too.
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Dragons on the wall to left of the front door, below.  I cannot see clearly what the 2 white rectangle squares are.  Paint them same color as shakes, they recede, instead of jump forward, look-at-me-look-at-me.
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Dragon, lighting.  Cannot see a light for the front door.  To keep the space feeling large, perhaps a simple recessed lite, in the eve, above the front door or a matching light on the wall, to the left of the front door, matching the light, below, to the right of the garage door.
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Dragon, dead brown mulch.  And it must be replenished yearly.  Plant an evergreen groundcover, done.  Warm & lush vs. dead & brown.
    

blue door | Highland Custom Homes:
Pic, above, here.
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Your turn.  What dragons, above, did you see, that I missed?  How would you change the dragons I did mention?  Please note, I've used affordable changes.  Of course I have changes for a different price point.  This home is lovely, I would truly like to see a stone path/steps.  And, I would add another bonsai espalier conifer, a dwarf conifer, to the left of the front path too.  A tighter espalier than the conifer at right of the path.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO T

Image result for bell at the front door
Pic, above, here.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Inspiration for Front Door Color

Yes, your front door matters.  Whether you think so, or not.  Your front door can tell me who you are, or tell me you don't care, or more likely, I care but it's on the to-do list.
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Had to smile at this front door, below.  It's the most often color choice I make for front doors, and I don't mean the blue.  I search interiors for a recurring color in the house, important but not boastful.  Typically, it's found in several pieces of art on the walls.  Clients will say, "I didn't realize I had that color in all my art."  Of course the door color must work with exterior colors already chosen, it's rare not to have it work.
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When clients have a dark foyer, I like to put in the glass door, below.  Literally.  We buy a panel door, and have our carpenter replace the panels with glass.
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Ironically, a year in our ca. 1900 American farmhouse, I've not painted the front door, it remains the seller's blood red color.  Up front, total arrogance, I thought it must be painted quickly, MY color.  It's on the list.  Oddly, the arrogance has disappeared.  The blood red is working for me, until the time arrives and its list number has been reached.

In Good Taste:  Sullen Gregory Design:
Pic, above, here.

Look around your home, what color is 'popping' from the art?
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Does it scare you a bit, and excite you too, wanting to put it on the front door?  It's probably your color.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO Tara

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Footprint: Power of Color

Without the matching column, below, the house ends at the corner.  With the column's matching brick color, the house ends at the column.
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There should be a technical term, a word, describing this phenomenon.  It doesn't have to be matching materials, merely color.  The power of color.
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Using color to expand the footprint of the home, the shutters, front door, siding/trim, are all fair game choices.  Each situation dictates a more-correct choice from the trinity of choices.

A wrought-iron gate at the side of the house separates the back and front…:
Pic, above, here.
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Brick column, above, seems newer than the home, the brick is smoother than brick on the home.
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Perfect choice for stone step, above, its color melding into the garden, and rough hewn edge adding welcome/warmth verses a saw cut edge, in this situation.
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Garden & Be Well,    XO T
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Off topic, below.

She's whiskey in a teacup.:
Pic, above, here.

Found this, above, a few days ago.  How could I not think of my best ever older boyfriend, by decades, crush.  Studying historic gardens across Scotland for 2 weeks, our group of 23 stayed in small hotels, most had been a hunting lodge, or some other interesting thing a century or 2 ago.   Since it was Scotland I had bought a bottle of Laphroaig.  After touring all day, our group would retire to fluff & puff for dinner, meeting in the parlor before dinner for socializing a bit, before the splintering off to our tables.  First, I must mention my best ever older boyfriend was quite married, and his wife, and her sister, were in our group.  Adored them too, his wife adored me for taking her husband off her hands for a few minutes at breakfast and dinner.  Heading to the parlor before dinner, my roommate & I would be carrying a tea cup.  
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Sitting on the sofa, in the parlor, talking with friends, I felt a pair of hands on my shoulders from behind, then best ever older boyfriend dipped his head low over me.  He squeezed my shoulders quite tight, whispering into my ear, "Tara you're alright, you're just alright."
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Best ever older boyfriend had an instinct.  Doubting my tea drinking, he was leaning in to smell my tea cup, and definitely got the mystery solved.  The color of strong tea, it was, of course, Laphroaig, neat.
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Seeing the quote, above, brought back those halcyon days with best ever older boyfriend.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Good Looking Green Meatballs

This exception, below, was too many years arriving.  Good looking, year round interest, not too much maintenance.
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What's the exception?  These are green meatballs that look great, have an intellect, and finally proved me wrong about how horrible green meatballs are.
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Most often green meatballs evolve in default.  Perhaps you have some now, maybe you can look at them thru this prism, below.  Poof, voila, create good green meatballs from bad.

Formal & Tailored Gardens | Boxwood spheres 'randomly' placed in minimal…:
Pic, above, here.

30 #Quotes #About #Life That Will Leave You Completely Amazed, You Will Love…:
Pic, above, here.
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Who knew even ugly green meatballs could have new life chapters?
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Garden & Be Well,    XO T

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Anna Wintour has Tara Turf?

Age 8, saw my 1st garden like this, below, in Augusta, GA.  The adults were content to stay inside & chat.  I did the rude child thing, and begged to go outside.  They were glad to get rid of me.  Had to be, I was more than glad to be gone from them.  Not until I saw the movie, Beetlejuice, did anything describe how I felt, going outside that house, that day, into the garden.  Another world.
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The garden was entirely green, wild, mischievously wild.  Looking ahead, left, right, the garden was telling me to go everywhere, all a fabulous mystery, yet speaking to me in a language I knew.  And, that feeling of being alone, in this adventure, perhaps explains more fully, in adulthood, studying historic landscapes across Europe for decades.  And creating the garden for myself.
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Few ask for. or understand, this type garden, up front, in USA.  I design as much of them into the ubiquitous requests, as I can.  A tiny handful, across 3 decades, have asked for the full monty.
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I was caught by this garden, below, being presumptuous.  It's owner, in the public eye for decades with an international successful career, and public persona so Cruella Deville, Meryl Streep played her in a movie.  The garden, below, takes her mask off.  Anna Wintour's garden, below.    












Pics, above, here.
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Full article from NYTimes, here.
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Garden & Be Well,   XOT

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Color & Architecture's Relationship

It's outrageous what color can do, good & bad, for architecture.
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Painting or staining a fence coming off the front sides of a home, widens its architecture.  Enlarges the footprint of welcome, to the home.
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An easy concept, and wildly affordable relative to the huge impact gained.

Dark Blue Front Entrance A new metal-framed door matches the new windows.:

Pic, above, here.
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Great example, above, about purchasing a properly scaled doormat.  This poor mat, above, looks like it came from a Pin the Tail on the Donkey store.  Dinky is Stinky, is this doormat's trinity fail.  The doors are way too fabulous to be wearing this doormat.
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Garden & Be Well,    XO T
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Dinky is Stinky is a great save, protecting you from hunting/gathering the wrong things.  Another great save, 'We're not to that layer yet.'  Both from Susanne Hudson.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Taking Historic into the Modern Realm

Clearly a master's touch, below, playing with history, cunningly modern.
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Sint-Job-In't-Goor Sleutel-op-de-deur

Whimsy, below, in the metaphor of sanctity.  What?  Taking the choice, below, to walk into the garden, you must bow your head, at the shrine of espaliered trees.
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Soon, hedging will shield the house from the outer world, flying buttresses, arc-boutant, to the nave within.
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Is your life worth anything less?
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Stewardship of self.  In all its layers.

Sint-Job-In't-Goor Pastorij


Sint-Job-In't-Goor landelijke woning

For good measure, several ball rooms planted into the back yard, above.

Sint-Job-In't-Goor achtertuin

The long hallway, above at right, a promenade, lit in the manner of le jardin rustique.  With hedging at the backyard too, another nave, a double cathedral built,
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Someone, at the top of their game, above.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO T
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We are still tending structural  outdoor necessities at our ca. 1900 American farmhouse garden.  Pouring more gravel, putting in paths, lighting, plantings, must wait.  One of those 'necessities' a well.  Beloved has worked with the well diggers many times during his construction career, he trusts them.  Good, fine.  My concern is flagrantly obvious.  Where will they find water?  How will it affect designing the garden?  
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We chose similar lights, above, for a renovated shed.  Once installed, I knew those lights would be perfect for the rest of the garden, on posts along pathways.  Imagine my surprise seeing the pic, above.
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What a day I had on the old Kubota tractor yesterday.  Wounded pride, newbie mistakes.  Hilarious being an 'expert' and embarking upon a new learning curve in the garden.  Details sketchy, pride still ruffled.
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Pics from here.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Picture: Garden Design Course

Pulling the gate/columns forward, below, welcomes you from the wide world into their private world, elongates the entry, and adds a foyer to the front door.  Painting the columns same as the house adds them to the footprint of the home, enlarging the home's territory.
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Painting the columns a different color, or if they were stone, still adds good features, excepting they become part of the garden, not the house.
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Great wisdom leaving the tops of the columns empty.
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Front door & light fixtures chosen well, they make the house seem taller.
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Note the gutters, below.  Copper color, not the brick color.  Well done.
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Roof, below, is like jewelry for the house.
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Repetition of square shapes, below, highlights the fabulousity of the tall round urns at the windows.  Super contrast.
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This garden design has been done for centuries.  Have seen it on several continents, and at all price points.  Done it myself, more than once.  Looks fresh & new with each reincarnation.
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Even the front door handle was chosen with care.  Drapes vs. blinds, again, well done.

/\ /\ . D. Keeley:

Pic, above, here.
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Copy, enfilade, axis, cross-axis, color, contrast, repetition, flow, welcome, focal points, ceiling, walls, floor, simplicity, has all the right Garden Design rules checked.
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I have a weakness for Garden- Design- Course in a single picture.
Garden & Be Well,   XOT

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Design Solution: Deer & No time

Last week I completed a Garden Design for a local family.  Their home is new construction on 35 acres of beautiful farm land, open, wooded, pastures, broad slight slopes.
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The pool is near completion, the pole barn completed, the house has its exterior, now awaiting wall board and layers that follow.
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The home is huge.  They have young children.  Deer thrive on their acreage.
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Plantings, aside from deer proof, must be no care, they have no time for landscape maintenance.  None.
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What to do?  Farmesque is the theme I chose.  With pool at the back, the front yard is open, mostly flat, short meadow.  I sense the front yard will be THE play yard.  Still, what to do with the Garden Design?
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At the far side of their front yard meadow, I designed a small pecan orchard, 8 trees, 2 rows of 4, with harvest table and strands of lights, for trunks and canopy.  Trunks to be lit nightly.
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More than meals, a gathering spot for projects, or lounging with a book.
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Dinner in the backyard ...:

Pic, above, here.
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Whew, saved by an orchard.
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And, simplicity.
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Garden & Be Well,    XO T

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

How Color Choice Affects the Size of Your Home

Calm, rustique, classic, nestled, below.  What plays the major role in this Exterior Design?  Color.
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Imagine home, below, with white trim.  Pop.  The house just moved forward, got smaller, the roof lowered, the garden shrunk.  Merely, painting the trim white.  Ironically, this home previously had a teal blue trim.  Same effect, to lesser degree, than white.
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Everything is thriving, but we do need some rain - it's been very dry here in the Northeast. From my driveway, my house looks beautiful with the tan colored woodwork - it is such a change from the teal blue. Do you remember the old trim?:

Pic, above, Martha Stewart.

In an area that is small, or with disparate components, here's the color trick, below.  Did you already intuit the trick?  Everything should be the same color, or color family.

 My longtime housekeeper, Laura Acuna, set up some refreshments on the lower terrace parterre outside my kitchen. Some cool pomegranate iced-tea and some cheese wafers.:

Pic, above, Martha Stewart.
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Exterior color, if you haven't given it much thought, does potent work to every exterior.  Make sure your exterior colors are doing the right potent work.  Potent for good vs. potent for bad.  It's your choice.  Make every layer of narrative with color choices exterior/interior and you've just raised property value, and made every day in your home happier.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO T

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Connecting Garden Rooms: Concave/Convex Stone Steps.

About 3 weeks ago I began working with amazing acreage.  The clients from out-of-state, could have afforded new fancy.  But it wasn't for 'her'.  She went beyond the patience of her family & realtor.  Why?  She had to have her home in the proper setting.  After renovating kitchen & other spaces, she's ready for the garden.  Their acres are stunning.  My job is to frame the views, and they are 360 !
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Lovely step detail:

Pic, above, here.
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Their home faces one of their lakes from a perfect distance, and, with a more perfect slope.
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At present there is no relationship between house & lake.  None.  How can this be?
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Oh my the delight, connecting house to lake with stone steps, concave & convex.
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Client's concave/convex stone steps won't be quite so formal, as above, more rustic, no mortar.
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Of course grading needed, and our stone mason to perfectly 'set' each stone.  Have worked with Javier for years, I think of him as a garden 'jeweler' !
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Alas, clients are building a carriage house, barn, paddock, pool, summer house, potager ahead of their concave/convex steps.  Excited about their other projects, but these steps make my heart sing.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO Tara
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Open, wooded, lakes, slight slopes, mature, oh my this acreage.  Poor Javier, he knows how excited I get about focal points of stone and what Muse sees.  Then, Javier makes my thoughts better.  His Muse speaks too.  

Friday, April 29, 2016

Color. Color ? Color !

Remember, designing your landscape, I must know you from the street.
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Parse the words.  To know you from the street, you must design your garden from interior views, and the same brain waves of style, color, flow, texture, individuality from inside to outside.
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A trinity of pics, below, you should all be able to shoot, of your home.  This trinity, below, is a Garden Design, of the ages, quiz question.  
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Today, now, your home/garden, mentally shoot these 3 pics.  Can you produce?
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Every garden needs a color trinity, green-brown-white, is the classic for centuries.  No worries if it's not your flavor, choose your own color trinity.  Produce these 3 pics.  Quiz question remains the same.  Shoot & produce.
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Color.  Color?  Color!  Which will it be?  This is your singular precious life.  Stretch your intelligence, comfort zone, think without your wallet.  Perhaps you need my personal question, epiphanized after too many decades people pleasing, "What would I do tomorrow if I were not afraid?"  When it comes to doing your garden, your best garden, I'm not the person you want to start a sentence, "I can't do that."  Those are 4 failure words.  Best 4 words I was ever told, "Be who you are."
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Studying historic gardens across Europe for 2 decades, this lesson about color, above, and within the pics, below, was intuitively learned.  This stuff, above/below, is not in garden design books.  It's merely in the best historic gardens across history.  Want to recreate the wheel?  Knock yourself out.  Everyone loves the outliers who do, with success.
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Since the start of designing gardens, color was easy to choose, I pull from interiors, what will work with the exteriors.
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Furlow Gatewood's home/garden is over the top with the color trinity.  He makes me see it fresh, as if he invented it.  Better, he owns it.
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Cuthbert House, on Furlow Gatewood's Compound, in Americus, Georgia, Photo by Max Kim-Bee~❥:

Pic, above, here.

rod-collins-furlow-gatewood:

Pic, above, here.
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Fern, viewed from the garden, pulls me in.  Then the brilliant audacity of double axis to the mirror with the fern.  Swoon.

 One Man's Folly: The Exceptional Houses of Furlow Gatewood: Julia Reed, Paul Costello, Rodney Collins, Bunny Williams: 9780847842520: Amazon...:

Pic, above, here.
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Nothing more to be said about your color trinity excepting, shoot it.  Picture worth 1,000 words.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO T

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Exterior Trim: Navajo White

I'm working at a project, craftsman bungalo, with good timing, exterior  paint was showing its last gasps.  Much better than paint with fresh new confidence, and the color is wrong.
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They like the soft blue lapboard siding, it will be used again.  Their white trim was so bright it owned the neighborhood.
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Of course they wanted white trim again.  Thankfully, they agreed, the existing white trim-columns-rails-step risers, much too white.
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Which white to choose?
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Navajo White, Benjamin Moore, below.
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Calm, receding, means business but doesn't shout new kid on the block.
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If Navajo White can 'sit back' with this much coverage, below, my client is safe, their Navajo White will let their home/garden speak, not the trim.

The brick is painted  Benjamin Moore Navajo White (as is the limestone), and the dark trim is a custom color, starting with a base of BM 161...:

Pic, above, here.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO T
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Major careers for this couple, 2 small children,  she loves to cook, and hired me because she wants the focus of her entire landscape, it's not large, to be potager, chicken coop, pollinators.  They're doing painting/repairs & tree work this spring, landscape this fall.  She had all the right cookbooks, several shelves, in her kitchen.  Quirky, but that's a realm of assessment, kitchens.  And, you know I don't mean the make/model of equipment.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Simplicity vs. Cliche

From forever I've learned best from completed problems, pictures & places.  Copy the best, copy what works, saves time/money.
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Simplicity, below, at top form.
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Easy, you think, they've got the money for 'simple'.
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Not so fast.  More than money, below, their landscape is rich in wisdom.  Garden Design of the ages.
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When you have a natural focal point, frame it don't compete.
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Had the good fortune of learning this while studying historic landscapes in northern Italy, Lake Maggiore, to be precise.


William Burgin:

Pic, above, here.

Garden design cliche, below, when there isn't as much money, space, nor existing natural focal point, as, above.
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Yet.  Life's riches are no less precious, below, than, above.
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Good garden design is not about money, it's about using your full intellect.
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How would you garden design a richer life, below?  Seriously, what would you do to the garden, below?

  Search results for: farmhouse - Fresh Farmhouse:

Pic, above, here.
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What would I do, above ?
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I would remove all porch railings, add a stone step between porch columns, take out foundation plantings, placing those foundation plantings along the sidewalk at front, and add more along the sides of the home, about same distance as those at the front.  For starters.
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As is, this home is already pulling me inside, imagine if the landscaping were good too.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO T

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

What is Special About this Garden?

What is special about the landscape, below?  Take away the lovely home, insert a 3 bedroom 1960's brick ranch with a carport, and still, every drip of special about the landscape remains.  Small input, huge output, in the garden, but specifically, why is it special?

French Facade:

Most USA homes are entered from the driveway.  Above, a garden entry leads you into the home.
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Normally, the garden entry, above, is lawn next to the driveway.  Perhaps you would like a pretty garden instead.  Welcome home.
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Note, too, layers of green.  Layers of green never fail, and succeed quickly.
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Garden & Be Well,    XO Tara
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Pic via Pinterest.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Florist Shop Technique in Your Garden

I remember well going into the old tiny white clapboard house, engulfed with oleander, gardenias, and sago palms, on the way to League City, TX, with its front half turned into a florist shop, they lived at the back, with mom when she needed to send sympathy flowers.  In the 60's this was not a phone call or internet purchase.  The large glass front refrigerator stuffed with flowers awaiting, scents, vases, ribbons, cut stems in a pile, no, I was not waiting in the car.  Life was electric in that tiny shop & home.
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Saw that house, long abandoned, during my last trip home in December.
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No matter its current state it has sailed a thousand ships in my work.  I have a Pinterest board for Florist Shops.  Clients with acreage, and little time, I send to that board to inspire when they have an open garden or private function.  Temporary beauty easily arranged.
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Claus Dalby, below, from Denmark uses the Florist Shop Technique.  No matter your continent, style, budget, the Florist Shop technique is for you too.    



Pic, above, Claus Dalby.
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Florist Shop Technique.  My favorite type of gardening, see it do it.
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Garden & Be Well,    XO T
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Thank you Janelle McCulloch for another great find.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Focal Point: Design Both Ends

If you are looking at a beautiful focal point (bench, urn, front door, &tc), you must be able to be at that focal point, turn, look opposite, and have a beautiful view.
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This front porch, below, intriguing on its own, owns a great view in the opposite direction.
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Detail.

An allee, below, of conifers.  Pruned into an arching view.

6 The Firs, ca. 1900, Library of Congress

From the street view, below, the same conifers retain their full exterior silhouette, with no hint of the surprise allee within.

3 The Firs, ca. 1900, Library of Congress

And, the gap in the hedge, above, is permission and invitation to enter.
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Big impact plantings, balancing scale to the house, and a welcome.  More importantly, low maintenance, drought tolerant and deer resistant.
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Ca. 1900, these pics, from Enclosure Take Refuge, who found them from,  *Photos by Detroit Publishing Co., via Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division, made me smile at recreating, their garden design.  My previous garden had the exact hedge, except it was cleyera punctuated with tea olive.  They were 'plant of the week' at $1.97 from my local family owned nursery.  My hunt was for evergreen, full sun, size.
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Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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Adore those front steps, adore.  Though totally not to code in our era.  And the darkly stained wood.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

How to Copy a Large Landscape into Your Small Space

Great example of historic/classic garden design in modernist disguise, below.

nelson byrd woltz landscape architects / hudson highland cottage, new york:

Don't have a rural property?  Your home is a classic 60's ranch in a sea of other 60's ranches?  Yes, you can have this landscape in your front yard.
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How?  What exchanges to make?
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The meadow/woodland, above, are the street & neighbors homes, so, block that view, keeping the rest of this incredible landscape design.  Behind the stone/cement walls, plant an evergreen hedge.   Choose for zone, height, drought tolerance, resistance to insects/disease, and deer.
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This landscape, above, is pure jewelry for a 60's ranch house in comparison to their builder installed  ubiquitous foundation plantings long ago pruned into green meat balls & meat loafs.  
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More, depending on the size of your site, this design, above, has plenty of room for a golf cart to zip around.
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Most odd, copying this landscape design, above, into a 60's ranch front yard provides the same elements of space, calm, and beauty as in the larger setting, above.  Promise.  It's one of those odd things you learn after decades of designing gardens.  The sky provides different types of magic, and confers 'size' to small spaces.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO Tara
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Pic from Gardenista.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

What Happens When 2 Queens Take on Pot

After Scotland, weeks of studying historic gardens, I came home the Queen of Pots.
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Years later, I encountered another Queen of Pots, Deborah Silver, below.
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She put me into a new chapter.

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Deborah's take on pots made me realize, "Perhaps I've been harming myself, by only doing 'my' Queens Pots."  Harm?  Embracing the seasons, in honor & thanks.  Enjoying hunting/gathering, assembling.

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My Queen's Pot, above, so wonderful it can be empty. or planted.
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Deborah took my theme, and didn't 'plant' in the traditional sense.  She creates exterior floral arrangements withstanding 'weather', for months.  Seeing her pots, why-didn't-I-think-of-that?
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Bottom line?  Choose pots so wonderful they can remain empty all year, AND you have a choice of adding an exterior floral arrangement.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO Tara
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Bottom pic from my garden, top pics from Deborah's recent post.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Creating the Perfect Front Door

Had a pair of platform cross strap sandals the same yellow, below, in high school, called them my 'school bus' shoes.
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Of course I clicked on the picture, for the yellow, then was delighted further.
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Length of the steps is gracious plenty, much too rare, and the real winner, placement of the urns.
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100% outside the door zone, no crowding, making the entry appear smaller.  The urns color, height & width, perfect.  More, they could be empty and still fabulous.  Better, notice the lack of foundation planting?  Swoon.
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Interior of this home, speaking from the curb.



Simple is hard.
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I spend a lot of time in my car going to jobsites, my little van is too noisy to hear when talking on the phone, so, it's the stereo.  Full spectrum, Mozart, Cole Porter, Edith Piaf, Willie Nelson, Bob Seger, The Cars, U2, you get the idea.  A lyric that goes deep, each time heard, Zac Brown's, "I've got everything I need, and nothing that I don't."
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Simple is hard, and that line should be the basis of a hymn.  A song of praise & thanks, sometimes a quest.
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It describes this front door, above, and garden.  Perhaps it should be a last question, designing your garden, "Does it have everything it needs, and nothing it doesn't?"  My last question, for years, designing a garden, when done, "What can I take away & it still holds together?"
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Garden & Be Well,   XO T
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Pic via Content in a Cottage.
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I always pack lunch for the car, today, waiting to be grabbed when I leave, by the front door on the table, peanut butter sandwich, raisins, apple, banana.  Have you read, Pillars of the Earth?  They were always packing lunch, bread/cheese/ale.  Can you imagine a crusty sourdough homemade bread, cheese from your own cow, who only eats from the pasture, and local brew ale?  Don't want the ale for lunch but the comparison always draws a smirk from me when packing my own bland road trip work lunches.