Showing posts with label Porch-Deck. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Porch-Deck. Show all posts

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Entry Ways: Flow & Focal Point

Studying garden pics on book/magazine covers since the 80's, it's not hard to realize the more entry ways a garden has, the better a garden is.  Enfilades rule.  And, the focal point is primo.
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Studying more deeply, it becomes obvious, entry ways in a garden are focal points, yet the rule for focal points is, One focal point per area.
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Breaking garden design rules, is inherent to historic garden design.  Modern too.
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Instantly, below, I wonder why the screened porch doesn't have a door at its left, and front.
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Adding the doors, a necessity, adds magic circles.  Flow.  As shown I hear Cole Porter, Don't Fence Me In.

Modern Farmhouse just outside of downtown Austin, TX for a family of four and their dog Hank.:
Pic, above, here.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO T

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Garden Design: Beautiful, Accessible, Sustainable

Past client called for their new home.  This is a copy of the Garden Design the sellers gave them at closing, below.  Sellers had done a gut renovation with the interior, and it's wildly fabulous.  The garden shows where the budget went !  Common lament every Garden Designer lives with.

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I always ask a few questions about what clients want/need, and received a nice list from them.  Amazingly, for their mission statement, they produced a trinity of words.  One of those words, Accessible, quite unusual and deeply appropriate.
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Before, above.  After, below.  See the obvious?  I learn this way, best.  Thought you might too.
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Their trinity of words: Beautiful, Accessible, Sustainable.

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Their front porch is deep, long and redolent of how a porch should be, yet rarely is.
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Clients knew their garden was 'fenced' in all the wrong places and not welcoming in the right places.
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Hope you 'see' the solution.
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Garden & Be Well,     XO T
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I designed a lot of entries into the garden, yet the most important 'accessibility' is opening the front porch, taking out that line of shrubs between walkway/porch.  Their driveway is cobblestone edged, so it will edge the new flagstone terrace too.  Copy, one of the 1st rules of Garden Design.
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French doors were also designed from the house to the front porch instead of the existing windows.  Flow, accessibility.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Saul Zaik: Integrated Indoor & Outdoor Spaces

Zipping with speed thru pics, this deck, below, stopped me.
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A hearty bravo to the brainwave.  Then, overdose-on-a-theme, the roof !
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Another bravo to whoever designed the interior of this home, from my favorite vantage point, the garden.  Landscaping along the windows is a bit odd, glass rectangle edged with ferns, creating a terrarium'ish style.  What to do instead?  (First, replace sofa with a pair of similar styled chairs, that turn 360.  Why the fortification of sofa only looking in?)  Remove ferns & existing path, replace with bluestone rectangles, sized in width from outer edge of deck, fully to the house, scaled in length to each window, spaced the same distance apart as the window frames.

Speaking to his original design, architect Saul Zaik says, “We were really just building boxes with a bunch of windows but experimenting with how you integrated indoor and outdoor spaces.” The house has seven different openings to the exterior, allowing different courtyard or patio settings for a range of outdoor activities, including seating for a gathering on the street-facing side. The Milfords hired Lilyvilla Gardens for the landscaping around the house, including variegated bluestone st...:
Pic, above, here.
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Color of patio chair, echoed inside with the bowl, and dark gray from chimney top to foundation.
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Next.  Axis looking into the home is marvelous.  What is its opposite axis?  Double axis.  If you have a focal point in one direction you must have another in the opposite.  Has me curious.
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Lawn & large shrub at corner are thriving, sculptural.
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Almost a Garden Design course in a single pic.
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Garden & Be Well,    XOT
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Notice the gutters at the roof line?  Great example of darkish color rising up into the roof.  Too often, gutters are painted much lighter than a roof, pulling the height of the roof lower.  Another counterintuitive Garden Design layer.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Too Much Wind

A single client, in decades, with consistent much too amazing winds.
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We've been in our ca. 1900 American farmhouse a year.  Twenty miles from windy client, it's not far enough.  Lifetime first, living in a windy location.  A new realm to conquer.
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We've added a deck the full width of the house, at the back, overlooking meadow, lake, woods, Milky Way, fireflies, chickens, potager, Beloved's office shed, my garden shed.  Too many days, the deck is not usable, wind.
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Luckily the winds have a predominate direction.  We are impatient, an evergreen hedge may be planted too, but we are not depending upon it as a sole solution, too slow.
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My shed has a deep/long covered porch at front/back.  Have already had many lunches/dinners inside my shed, too windy outside.
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The shed has a simpler solution for wind, using a rolling barn door front/back against the prevailing winds.
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Still awaiting the perfect wind fix for the deck.  Shutters keep topping the discussions.  Framed, for strength, by adding an arbor too.

Shutter Doors:

Pic, above, here.
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Weekly, I anthropomorphize the winds.  They laugh at me.  Literally, the wind is a boss.  About every 4-5 days, on the deck & front porch,  I have to wipe sills & tabletops, their thick coating of dirt/dust/grit bondoed with pollens.  Without the cleaning I'm sure pecan & pine tree seedlings would grow upon them within 6 weeks.
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Garden & Be Well,    XO Tara
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Off topic, great detail for color & painting, above.  Painted risers, very nice.  Lighting, ceiling fan, furniture, well done.

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, June 24, 2014

Front Porch: Color, Shutters, Narrative

In a subdivision, below, without the trees you would see neighbor's houses from the front porch.


Whenever you see the gardener, dressed up/down, she's arrayed in black/white.  With a bit of bling too, but you knew that from her front porch.


The shutters are bi-fold doors from a closet.  Ick to fab !
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Color, seating, flow, layers, texture, invitation, relaxation, all ages, conversation, dining, narrative.
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Which shouts loudest?
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I adore the narrative, above.
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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.
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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.

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.
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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.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

5 Important Covered Porch Design Elements

Hope the luxury of designing a porch is yours, not a previous owner.
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1.  Plenty of electrical outlets.  Every wall should have 1 or more electrical outlets.  Enough electrical outlets to disturb your electrician.  Never, in my experience, does an electrician understand this.  (Nor spouse.)


2.  Place can lights, below, away from fan blades.  Who wants haunted house strobe lights?


3.  Do not use off-the-shelf lattice.  Lattice, below, is special order, a bit thicker wood, looks custom, costs minimally more.


4.  Detail the walls & ceiling.

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5.  Choose colors that flow from your interiors inside the covered porch & colors that flow from your home's exterior to the outside of your covered porch.
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At jobsite yesterday we 'vision quested' furniture to source/buy/reuse/place, art to hang, tv, etc.
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Yes, it was fun.
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This porch has done something quite special.  It has given her a new house.  It began as a deck 1/2 the size of the new covered porch.  A never used deck.
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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.
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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.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Screened Porch: Furniture Texture


Furniture textures are important.  In addition to color.



A new covered screened porch, above/below, with warmth & welcome.



Patio/deck/porch/garden furniture is too often in 'sets' with matchy-watchy pieces too.
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What is this hold garden furniture ads have over popular imagination?
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Of course they want you to buy sets.
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Most often, why would you do that?
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However, there are lovely exceptions.  
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Be sure you are one before embarking upon sets of matchy-watchy garden furniture.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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pics this week in a client garden.
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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.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Using Color Restraint with Intensity

Intense restraint and another example of the color trinity green-brown-white.


Restraint so intense the terrace has become a proscenium for guests.
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Subtlety so rich the bluestone & granite become focal points.
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Humbling execution.
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Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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Pic Wendy Posard and Associates.  Definite teamwork between architect & owners.
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2 Tara Dillard questions a patio must answer, 'Is this patio so fabulous I must see inside the house?', 'Is this patio so incredible I must see the garden?'.  Yes & yes.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Creating Lush

Vertical lawn, below.


Don't have a stone villa?  Espalier a woody shrub.  No wires or trellis needed.
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Oddly, the perfection above is undone without the  rattan chair.  Then it becomes an ad for patio furniture.
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Garden & Be Well,  XO Tara
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Those white cushions?  Not in my garden, crape myrtle tree debris would win in a day!
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How lush can a garden be and have very little?  That is the best gardening question.  This garden, above, wins.

Pic Veranda magazine.
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If you want a beautiful garden & home filling you with joy, and causes you to tap the brake pedal, as you look in the rear view mirror heading out, become my client, local or on-line.
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Award winning speaker, hire me to speak to your group, local or out-of-state.
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Garden books by Tara Dillard, Amazon.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Wendy Posard: Kitchen + Garden


When the garden is a feature of the kitchen I know the architect has gone beyond their education.  And delved into the realm of intuitive.


Flooring flows inside/outside and the scale is charming vs. large.  Other comparisons: happy vs. large, nurturing vs. large.......
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Necessity vs. luxury.
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"I can live without the necessities but I must have the luxuries.", a quote I first heard age 8, repeated by Miss Katherine Scott, a grand influence.
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Garden & Be Well,       XO Tara
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Pic is a Wendy Posard project.

Friday, October 11, 2013

How to Get More From Less: Outdoor Rooms

How little can you have and it be a garden?


Remember Gertrude Jekyll's "....the first thing I consider, when planning a garden, is what to put on the house."
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For ease of maintenance I prefer espaliered woody shrubs.  No wires, no trellis.
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House & terrace, above, are vanishing threshold.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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pic via Half Pudding Half Sauce.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Empty is Fine. Why be perfect?

Garden Design is not about having a perfect garden.


It's about having a beautiful garden without stress.  From every window a beautiful view.  


Doesn't matter if the terra cotta pot is planted.
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There is a realm the perfect garden matters, pollinator habitat.
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Oddly, my Garden Design formula based on historic gardens across Europe does, indeed, create maximum pollinator habitat.  And I thought I was going after beautiful + low maintenance.  Classic story of following your heart, while others belittle what you are doing, and gaining far more than anticipated.
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Why does pollinator habitat matter?  Increasing pollinators increases crop yields up to 80%.
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Have a seat, hold on, YOU are a pollinator too.  
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pics at jobsite this week.  Have you ever really thought about the types of sex plants have?  Hilarious when compared to the snit about humans.  

Friday, August 16, 2013

Desk & End Table on the Porch

Perfect place to get a few things done on the laptop, a quick lunch, perhaps a grandchild coloring?


Maybe it's only an extra chair.


A magic table:  end table AND desk.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pics taken yesterday at jobsite.  Did you notice the garden view in the top pic?  Decades of experience, studies in historic gardens across Europe, college, seminars, knowing  simplicity is the 'skill'. .

Thursday, June 13, 2013

On the Porch with Drapes

Nothing was here, below, a few days ago.  


The porch, below, when we began.



The corner 'before', above, and 'after', below.


Lamp, above, seen from the garden, below.


Porch 'before', below, viewed from the garden.


 Of course you want to look in the window, above.


 Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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Pics of Porch Garden I created with Susanne Hudson at the Penny McHenry Hydrangea Festival earlier this month.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Perfect Front Porch

Of course the patina of the rooster is white.  It's her theme.


To the left of their front door, below.


To the right of their front door, below.




Mary Poppins said it best, "Practically perfect in every way."
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Garden & Be Well,   XO Tara
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Pic same garden as previous post.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Basement Door is now the Dowager's Porch

It's common to see a basement door with lawn.  And nothing else.


Mother-in-law Suite doesn't aptly describe this rendition.


Common furnishings, off the shelf shutters, a simple arbor, concrete pavers & voila !


Color theme was chosen and leveraged with punches of yellow.




Boxwoods, liriope, hollies prettier AND easier to maintain than ubiquitous lawn.  Notice, above, the garbage can?


Between driveway & Dowager's Porch is a tiny foyer, above.  Gravel, above, pure brilliance.
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Most basement doors are the throw-away-zone.  Worse, the criminal zone.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pics taken last weekend at the Penny McHenry Hydrangea Festival.  This garden belongs to Jeri Farmer, co-founder of the PMHF with Susanne Hudson.  Susanne helps Jeri with her Garden Design.  

Monday, June 3, 2013

Where to Start

Don't know where to begin your Garden Design?


Begin with a table outside.  You must eat.
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Then, begin with layers of green: trees, shrubs, groundcovers.  Each suited for your zone-sun-shade-parched-moist areas.
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With the greens add focal points on axis from window views.
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You've just created a garden in vanishing threshold with your home.
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Garden & Be Well,    XO Tara
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Pic via Bumble at Home.   Truly, keep it this simple.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Proscenium Design is Your Desire


Porch, turkeys, garden, a new trinity.  This is my job, below.  Do you see what I've done?  


Designed the garden as a proscenium to life.  


What does that mean?
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Garden is fabulous, marvelous, incredible 24/7 with little effort and a stage set for what life tosses.
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Look at the top pic again.
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It's taken from inside the house.  A snapshot that looks like a photo shoot.
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Not an accident.
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This garden is ready for Garden & Gun.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pics sent from client last week.  She KNEW the turkey pic would THRILL me !!!!!!  Don't know Garden & Gun magazine?  You want to.