Showing posts with label Doorstep Gardening. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Doorstep Gardening. Show all posts

Monday, June 20, 2016

Design: House Meets Patio

Commercial, mostly interiors shop, March, below, better at garden design than most garden centers.
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Not a lot here, excepting there is a lot.  Each layer, perfect.
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Color, flow, plants, staging, texture, contrast, plants, still life, heights, focal points, axis, seasonal, lighting, vanishing threshold, multi-functional, over-dose-theme, easy maintenance.
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At this phase, below, personally.  Have purchased a harvest table made from wood of a century old tobacco barn.  What's the phase?  Choosing chairs.  Looking at galvanized metal.  Time is a luxury, the table won't fit in my van, Beloved's trucks are at a jobsite for another few weeks.  Need 10 chairs.  Don't want all of them to match, perhaps they will.  That is the fun of the hunt.
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march-1

Pic, above, here.
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Color trinity, above, great for my zone, tail end of Piedmont swallowed by Coastal Plain, in depths of summer's miseries heat-humidity-bugs, gives the illusion of 'cool' viewed from interiors.
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Alone, this pic is a, Design: House Meets Patio, course.
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Ironically, my horticulture degree included zero about this zone.  Zero
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Notice the stone at the open door?  Very nice.

Garden & Be Well,   XO T
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Go into the typical box store garden center, and be greeted by zillions of colorful greenhouse annuals, chemicals to annihilate bees-butterflies-man, finish off with fertilizers to poison groundwater, and kill earthworms and mycorrhizal fungi in the soil.  With zero irony the same garden centers sell annual flowers to attract butterflies, planted in soil with systemic insecticides, all with banner marketing.  Aka, killing the same butterflies you're trying to attract.
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Made a mistake at the seed store early this month, bought a small bag of 'organic' fertilizer for our lone tomato plant.  Reading the label at home, after opening, it's N-P-K, ugh, kills earthworms/fungi.  At least the tomato is in a pot.    

Friday, February 5, 2016

Dowager Duchess at Edensor House: Gravel Paths

Dinner tonight in honor of a friend's beloved grandmother.  She would have been 99.  Grandma's chocolate pie will be the star, and focused conversation for all, about grandmothers.  
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A dinner ritual for many years, I was unaware & suppose my continual mention of my grandma earned me an invitation.
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Days a bit longer and  will be able to see my host's garden before last light.  Designed her garden about 2 years ago, and they are totally DIY.
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Snakes are a problem at their home, and they have 2 young daughters.  
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Gravel is designed up to the house, and stones within the gravel, as needed for easier main paths.
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Gravel with pathway stones has been done for thousands of years.
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Another benediction for gravel with stones, below, Debo, Duchess of Devonshire, if Debo does it, case closed.



Duchess of Devonshire, below, at her dowager house, above, Edensor House, an old vicarage, she called, Old Vic.  Note, exquisite pruning, below, to the right of the door?




Centuries old, below, the backdrop landscape behind the Duchess is no accident.  None.  

The Duchess of Devonshire, photographed in 2010 by Emma Hardy

Old Vic, below, rendering to be sold at Sotheby's.

Painting by Catriona Hall, Old Vicarage, signed with artist's monogram, £600 - 800

The Duchess, below, was keen on many outdoor activities, in one of her books, can't remember which, she mentioned how cold/wet/mucky some pursuits were but the game was on for all included, Show No Discomfort.  




Before pie, we'll walk the new gravel paths.  Today, temps are freezing, winds gusting to 20mph, and we will do our best to show-no-discomfort.
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Garden & Be Well,    XO Tara
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Pics from Sotheby's .  The Style Saloniste has a bit more about the Duchess, here.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Proper Placement: Pots by the Front Door

Perfect, below.  Placement of the pots, their size, and materials.

Custom Home by E.C.Trethewey

Most often pots are placed too close to the front door, hugging too tight.  A major design flaw.
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The fix, proper placement, is free.
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Proper pots?  Pots at your front door label your interior, and you, within the first 6 seconds.  I must know who you are at your front door.  Worth saving your pennies, for proper pots, and you take them with you if you move.
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Choosing pots?  Ask yourself, "Are these pots so wonderful they will be fought over at my estate sale?"
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Garden & Be Well,    XO Tara
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Pic via Ect Builders.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Front Door: Before & After


Lovely home, below, builder-special landscaping.


Page Duke: Before the landscape design

What, below, happened?

Page Duke: A Strong Landscape Focal Point

Adjusting eyeballs back into sockets, the before/after leave only questions.  Did new owners move in?  How much property for the site, for the front yard?  What does the backyard look like, too small, slope, etc?  Who's brilliant idea to treat the front yard as a back yard?  Painting the brick, yes.
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Every penny of this hardscape goes into house value.  Wooooowzzzzzza.
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Views from inside the home changed.  Lifestyle of the home changed.
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Historic garden design, nothing new.  However, totally new here.
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Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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Pics Page/Duke.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Vision Quest: Landscape for a Barn

Vision questing a barn this month.  Construction was completed recently, and without intervention it is already perfect.  Anything done must appear not-done.
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Large, it will be used for family events, and professional.  Cars, people, caterers, ease of use for all, without hindrance to views..
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Maintenance must be insignificant.
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Knowns include, hiding hvac/septic/trash, gravel, stone, meadow, ease of flow for cars/walking, large groups/small groups, social events/educational events, exterior lighting, meals en plein air, an impromptu lair for the owners,

House in Blacksod Bay by  Tierney Haines Architects, Three sandstone wings protect an inner courtyard from fierce coastal winds at this seaside house in Ireland by Tierney Haines Architects.

An Irish landscape, above.  Stark, beautiful.

Historic Old Barn | Historic Barns

Simplicity, above, to the bone.  A bit of slope, perhaps add 'jewelry' with a stone wall, similar to the above using stones found on site.

Oxfordshire Barn Conversion by John Minshaw photo© Lucas Allen

At the doors, stone terraces, above, will keep most of the gravel off shoes, and interior vintage wood floors.
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Ina Garten uses hedges, below, at her barn.  I need to site the hedges to obscure the necessities, and allow 'flow'.  Must be deer proof & evergreen.



Need shade at the barn for outdoor meals.  Martha Stewart, used pin oaks at her barn, below.  Perhaps 2-4 oaks sited, just right, for a harvest table, and the tractor.


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Once the necessities are sited, gravel, stone, trees, hedge, flow, the barn is 'done'.  However, at that point, I'm open to adding a flourish, maybe a single espalier heirloom fruit tree, in the vein of Arne Maynard, below,
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 Image result for arne maynard
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Along with knowing lavender will be planted, and several types of self-seeding flowers into the meadows at the barn.
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This is the 1st salvo vision questing, next will be on site, alone for a couple of hours, then on site with the owner.  After that, we set it aside, let the left/right brain magic play.  Decisions made, then taken to the 'men' creating the literal landscape.  Their input, from a base of decades experience, filling out the full breadth of the team.  More changes.  Finally, a garden beyond measure, exceeding expectations.  Yes, exactly why I like working with a team.
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Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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All pics from my Pinterest board, here.    

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Free Garden Design

Modern 2,000+ years ago.  Modern today.
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No need to be an expert, to understand why garden centers are not 'on board'.



Calm.  Facade, bench, pots, gravel, fade their colors into each other.  I see the silhouette of branches in winter striking the house, and gravel.  I hear the leaves, wind rustled, see their fall colors.  Gravel crunching underfoot.
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This house doesn't make the Garden Design special, instead, the choice to have this Garden Design is special.
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Free Garden Design.  Equally at home with a brick ranchburger ca. 1963, pioneer cabin, starter home, $2 million home in a gated community.
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Myriad choices made with this Garden Design.  Especially adore all of the 'no' choices.
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Why is this Garden Design harder to choose than keeping foundation plantings, installed by the builder, and a pocked lawn needing mow/blow/go, fertilizers poisoning groundwater, zero aesthetics to increase property value, no choices for plantings to reduce hvac expenses, no thought for color, or pulling the foot outside to enjoy Nature?
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Garden & Be Well,    XO Tara
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Picture from here.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Color: Banish Hodge Podge Lodge

Viewing the Great Smoky Mountains, below.
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The century old Glen Ella Inn would be inappropriate to its era if it were 'fancy'.
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Coming up from the garden, below, the owner's heart & intellect spoke, and made me smile.
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For many centuries the best gardens across the globe have shared an oddly piquant quality, and much needed.  The poverty cycle.
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My smile, below?  The air-conditioning units painted the wall color, and rocking chairs painted the door color.


Studying historic gardens across France taught me the connection of paint color and field gathered furniture.
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Been doing it in client gardens for decades.  I'm not one to ignore the brilliance of earlier garden designers.


Another smile, with color.  Have designed umbrellas into a client's barns/acreage.  Using any color amongst her exterior color trinity.  (Remember, every garden must have a color trinity.)
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Ironically, the chairs on the front porch of Glen Ella, yesterday's post, were created during a true poverty cycle, and now, are quite expensive.  Hence, the style change with the back porch rocking chairs.
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Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara

Thursday, December 18, 2014

What Makes a Garden: Vanishing Threshold

Studying the best historic gardens in Italy, decades ago, it was obvious their gardens are in relationship to the home/villa.
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USA landscapes, I was taught in college, are to be designed from the street, looking at the house.  Preferably by testosterone-on-wheels-mow-blow-go-commodify-all-I-touch.  (Zillion situations where this is fine, too.)
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Easy to understand the joy/love getting my horticulture degree, yet agony in its belief system.  Hence, trotting off to Europe for decades,  truly learning about gardens.

Yesterday, on Pinterest, I saw both homes, above/below.
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Zero school needed, to decipher which garden is European or USA style.
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One garden is in relationship with its house, the other, tacked-on quite adequately.  
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Yet, both gardens have the same ingredients.

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When a garden is not in relationship to the house, aside from it likely being the builder's special du jour, I call them Pin-the-Tail-on-the-Donkey gardens.
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2 pics, all you need to become an expert at deciphering a garden in relationship to its house or a pin-the-tail-on-the-Donkey garden.
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I adore learning thru pictures.
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Vanishing threshold gardens are first designed from inside the home, not the street.
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Garden & Be Well,    XO Tara
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The thing about 'judging' anonymous gardens is unfair.  Please don't think I'm doing it here.
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Too many reasons a garden cannot be judged.  One never knows if it's a job loss, elderly widowed owner, alcoholism or other addiction may live inside, major health issues, working too many hours with travel included, some people are happily oblivious with deep interests elsewhere, & etc,
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  For a beautiful garden & home filling you with joy, become my client, local/on-line.
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Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
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Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
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Construction by Award Winning
Shaefer Heard Construction, licensed home-builder, renovation - new construction.  Heard's Landscaping a unit of SHC.  3 decades of service.


NOTE to my gardening friends... look for changes to come. 
Knew before computers/cell phones, sitting in Atlanta traffic on way to a client, 'I must reach a larger audience with the same amount of effort.'   Soon after that epiphany I signed my CBS-TV, and, books contracts on the same day.
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Then I read an article in the NYTimes about something called 'blogging'.  Saved the article for a year before reading it.  Studied all the blogs they mentioned, hired a computer expert they quoted, and attended a blogging seminar.
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Blogging 2.0 has arrived, my knowledge is 1.0.  A believer in copying the best historic gardens across the globe it flows into every arena of life.  Watching Maria Killam grow her career/blog/life over the past 3 years made its impact.  Signed up  for a year's course with her blogging expert, Jon Morrow
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Changes will be slow, plodding is my adored method.  Pulling triggers here/there is spice in the mix.
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What do YOU want?
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Nothing is too small, too big, or too ego crushing to mention.
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Passion lies in sharing what has filled me to the depths of grace, joy & atonement, the best landscapes created over the last 2,000+ years.

Just so you know... 

 I  welcome your input.

Friday, October 17, 2014

What Your Home Should Say, from the Curb

Your garden must tell me who you are from the curb.


'Overdose on your theme', is the best way to get there.
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Garden & Be Well,  XO Tara
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Pic, 5th and State, take the link, Debra's done an excellent treatise on matching pots to houses.
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For a beautiful garden & home filling you with joy, become my client, local/on-line.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
Construction by Award Winning
Shaefer Heard Construction, licensed home-builder, renovation - new construction.  Heard's Landscaping a unit of SHC.  3 decades of service.
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NOTE to my gardening friends... look for changes to come. 
Knew before computers/cell phones, sitting in Atlanta traffic on way to a client, 'I must reach a larger audience with the same amount of effort.'   Soon after that epiphany I signed my CBS-TV, and, books contracts on the same day.
.
Then I read an article in the NYTimes about something called 'blogging'.  Saved the article for a year before reading it.  Studied all the blogs they mentioned, hired a computer expert they quoted, and attended a blogging seminar.
.
Blogging 2.0 has arrived, my knowledge is 1.0.  A believer in copying the best historic gardens across the globe it flows into every arena of life.  Watching Maria Killam grow her career/blog/life over the past 3 years made its impact.  Signed up  for a year's course with her blogging expert, Jon Morrow
.
Changes will be slow, plodding is my adored method.  Pulling triggers here/there is spice in the mix.
.
What do YOU want?
.
Nothing is too small, too big, or too ego crushing to mention.
.
Passion lies in sharing what has filled me to the depths of grace, joy & atonement, the best landscapes created over the last 2,000+ years.

Just so you know... 

 I  welcome your input.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Beautiful Easy Landscapes: Design Course Free in this Pic

Beautiful easy landscape design course, below, in a single picture.

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What is here?
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Scale, flow, invitation, axis, double axis, mystery, color theme, contrasting textures, path, mall, historical theme, lighting, focal points, canopy of sky, understory trees, pots so wonderful they can be planted- or not.
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  The most important landscape design element, aside from easy to maintain? 
 Creation of a beautiful backdrop to life. 
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Prior to age 40 most clients want gobsmacks of stuff in their landscape.  Past 50 most clients want strong editing in their landscape, and, demanding it be beautiful backdrop to their lives.
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This is you demanding your landscape leverage your life, in all layers.
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Favorite question I ask myself about every landscape design, "What can I take out, and it remains a beautiful landscape?"
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Garden & Be Well,    XO Tara
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For a beautiful garden & home filling you with joy, become my client, local/on-line.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
Construction by Award Winning
Shaefer Heard Construction, licensed home-builder, renovation - new construction.  Heard's Landscaping a unit of SHC.  3 decades of service.
.
NOTE to my gardening friends... look for changes to come. 
Knew before computers/cell phones, sitting in Atlanta traffic on way to a client, 'I must reach a larger audience with the same amount of effort.'   Soon after that epiphany I signed my CBS-TV, and, books contracts on the same day.
.
Then I read an article in the NYTimes about something called 'blogging'.  Saved the article for a year before reading it.  Studied all the blogs they mentioned, hired a computer expert they quoted, and attended a blogging seminar.
.
Blogging 2.0 has arrived, my knowledge is 1.0.  A believer in copying the best historic gardens across the globe it flows into every arena of life.  Watching Maria Killam grow her career/blog/life over the past 3 years made its impact.  Signed up  for a year's course with her blogging expert, Jon Morrow
.
Changes will be slow, plodding is my adored method.  Pulling triggers here/there is spice in the mix.
.
What do YOU want?
.
Nothing is too small, too big, or too ego crushing to mention.
.
Passion lies in sharing what has filled me to the depths of grace, joy & atonement, the best landscapes created over the last 2,000+ years.

Just so you know... 

 I  welcome your input.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Garden Design Ideas: Double Axis

Garden Design is almost a features game.  A template of features show up in every good garden for over 10,000 years.  Literally.
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Focal point on axis, below.



Focal point on axis, below.


When the same focal point is viewed in 2 axis you have a Double Axis.
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You must have Double Axis with your Garden Design.
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At a minimum.
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But don't stop there.  Sissinghurst Castle has a male nude statue on axis from 5 main views.
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Do the math, that's 10 axis views.
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Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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Slow down, go back to the 10,000 year remark.  Why did I put it in?
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A little point made, you will not recreate the wheel.  Instead drive the known wheel, make it travel where you want.  That, alone, is enough to keep you occupied for a lifetime.  
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I shot the pics last month.  

For a beautiful garden & home filling you with joy, become my client, local/on-line.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
Construction by Award Winning
Shaefer Heard Construction, licensed home-builder, renovation - new construction.  Heard's Landscaping a unit of SHC.  3 decades of service.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Front Porch: Remove the Rails

No rails.


Shutters are full length door scale, adding 'height'.  Screen door with long top panel, and a plain bottom panel, again adding height.
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Gravel to the house.  Yes.  Downspout is piped away, and round, very nice.
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To enlarge the space further, add step across entire front & side.  More flow/movement.  Cole Porter's, Don't Fence Me In.
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Wonder how the shutter color is being used inside, curious about the color on the ceiling.
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Ironically, everything is done with a sure hand except the pots.  They seem like mere filler (or magazine staging at its pinnacle of pots/pillows) until the correct pots are chosen/planted.
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Historically designed, low maintenance.  Unskilled labor could easily keep this in shape.
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Maria Killam had this pic recently & nailed it on the color.  Made me laugh, all I could see was the 'entire' excellent garden design, color included.  Of course I'm always happy seeing a front porch rail liberation. Would like an architect to do a post on this pic next !
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Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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For a beautiful garden & home filling you with joy, become my client, local/on-line.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
Construction by Award Winning
Shaefer Heard Construction, licensed home-builder, renovation - new construction.  Heard's Landscaping a unit of SHC.  3 decades of service.

Monday, August 4, 2014

The Minimalist Guide to Building Your own Conservatory

Better Homes & Gardens magazine recently put a Conservatory I built with Susanne Hudson for the Penny McHenry Hydrangea Festival in their magazine again.  Haven't read it yet but am curious.
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My garden is 8500sf total, including house.  This is for tiny gardens too.
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Conservatory in my garden, below,  best investment in 'me' ever.
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Salient facts: 12' x 18' is the minimum size, doors must be on 2 walls minimum, electrical outlets on every wall, chandelier, ceiling fans, wood stove.  Site parallel or perpendicular to your home.  
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 A 'moveable' structure meets most zoning laws allowing you to site properly.
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90% rescued materials, below.  Most, a century old.
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A decade of search/rescue + filling the piggy bank to pay for labor/materials/electrical.  Voila.


Choose a good carpenter, let their talent shine on your team.


Never tire of these French doors, they began life a century ago, 1 each side of a fireplace, in my grandmother's Federal style house.


Ground was not level.  Stone steps were rescued, and gravel chosen for the floor.  No worries getting finished interior grade level.


Conservatory, above, Susanne & I built, in the new BHG magazine.  Styling, above, is ours, the magazine has theirs.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Top 3 pics in my backyard.  Wanted a larger Conservatory but space did not allow.  Squeaked by with the minimum, 12' x 18'.  The day my Conservatory was completed and the men helped bring in all the antiques from the garage, then left, I sat in the finished Conservatory for the 1st time alone, IT BEGAN.  Life's tipping point.  Who knew?  Beware of getting what you ask for.  It WILL change your life.  What was seen thru a glass darkly will shine clear.  In that moment you will let go of every thing holding you back.  Fear that crippled will fall away as if you knew nothing of its existence.
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Lunch Ministry is often held in my Conservatory.  Amazing the amount of laughter, and tears, this blessed Conservatory has already harbored with friends.  Beloved, when he realizes I'm in the Conservatory, most often, will leave me alone until 'I' decide to come in.  Grace pulsating.
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Minimalist?  Mentored, as a little girl, by Miss Katherine Scott, "I can live without the necessities but must have the luxuries."  From age 7, wisdom understood.  An understanding never appreciated by my dad, a little more by Beloved.  Kindred spirits totally 'get it'.
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For a beautiful garden & home filling you with joy, become my client, local/on-line.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
Construction by Award Winning
Shaefer Heard Construction, licensed home-builder, renovation - new construction.  Heard's Landscaping a unit of SHC.  3 decades of service.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Does Your Landscape Describe You?

Beside the front porch, below, is the mudroom entrance.
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 I feel the welcome & delight in each detail.


The wreath is in honor of the Penny McHenry Hydrangea Festival & this home/garden are on the tour.
Been in Southern Living magazine too.


As if the bench still-life were not enough, the little wall, below, along the path is 'done' too.


Precociously my Tara Dillard garden design rule, "I must know who you are from the garden before ever entering your home.", is wowza answered here.
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Today, seriously look around your garden & home's exterior.  Do they tell me who you are?
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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For a beautiful garden & home filling you with joy, become my client, local/on-line.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
Construction by Award Winning:

Shaefer Heard Construction, licensed home-builder, renovation - new construction.  Heard's Landscaping a unit of SHC.  3 decades of service.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Front Porch: Formal + Informal


Design Rule: Contrast.
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A touch of the Queen + Ellie Mae Clampett.
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Urn on Plinth + Galvanized Buckets hanging with ropes.

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Your garden must tell me who you are before stepping inside your home.
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Garden & Be Well,    XO Tara
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Pic taken this month.  Jeri Farmer's lovely home/garden was on the Penny McHenry Hydrangea Festival Garden Tour.  Jeri & Susanne refreshed the garden this year and time/money were both running short yet pots were still needed for the ferns.  Of course Susanne said, "Put them in galvanized buckets."
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For a beautiful garden & home filling you with joy, become my client, local/on-line.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
Construction by Award Winning:

Shaefer Heard Construction, licensed home-builder, renovation - new construction.  Heard's Landscaping a unit of SHC.  3 decades of service.