Wow. I can’t believe my last blog post was seven months ago! I’ve thought about blogging so many times over the past year, but I just couldn’t seem to make it happen.
This weekend marks the one-year anniversary of my father’s death, and despite my best intentions, the only thing I could manage this past year was to withdraw completely.
All I wanted was to be with my mother and my family, seeking as much stillness as I could find. It’s been an important part of healing my broken heart, but as this year comes to an end, I finally feel like I’m coming back to life and am excited to once again share my blog with all of you.
Over the next several months I have lots of gardens to talk about, some belong to my clients, others are near my new home in Granite Bay, some from around the country, and a few surprises I’ll share with you later.
So as we enter into another cold and wintery weekend, I thought you might like to nestle in, make yourself a cup of tea, and gather a little inspiration from one of my favorite recent projects.
This is the garden of one of my best friends and is one that I’ve wanted to get my hands on for years.
After years of going back and forth regarding keeping the pool or removing it, a decision was made – remove the pool!
Removing the pool is never an easy decision: there are emotional hurdles to overcome (all those fun family memories!), financial hurdles (it’s pretty pricey), and inconvenience hurdles (it’s incredibly invasive, noisy, and messy.)
But in the end, it’s so worth the headaches.
Here’s what to expect if you’re thinking of taking out your pool – lots of loud equipment trampling your existing garden, digging for days and days, and a mess like you’ve never seen. But trust me – it’ll end soon enough!
Since the family was pretty nervous about the decision to remove the pool, it was critical that I design their new garden with elements that would help create a whole new batch of family memories.
We gave this space a facelift by creating a spacious Connecticut bluestone dining area to accommodate lots of impromptu entertaining.
Surrounding the new patio is a low retaining wall which will double as extra seating when needed.
Bordering the patio is the focal point of the garden – a stunning fountain converted from a jar from Eye of the Day Design Center.
Surrounding the fountain is a mix of lemon thyme, dwarf lavender, and blue fescue grass. Instead of lawn or bark chips as a groundcover, we decided to use small, smooth La Paz pebbles, adding a wonderful feel and sound when walked on.
It’s a relatively simple process to convert almost any type of container into a fountain. Click here to see another example, as well as find information on how to do this.
Near the fountain are lounges for the sunbathers in the family, as well as a pair of heated Galanter & Jones chairs. Yes, heated!
I can’t emphasize enough how incredibly comfy and cozy these chairs are when there’s a chill in the air – my favorite chairs ever.
Each year, her husband loves growing tomatoes from seed, so he wanted a space where he can continue to grow them, along with other crops of beans, peppers, and even corn.
The garden is small, but we were able to create a space at the very end that would have enough sun for his vegetable beds, complete with a see-through fence to keep out their rambunctious puppy.
Next to the fenced vegetable garden are two stacked-stone raised beds designated for cutting flowers and herbs.
Over the next few months I’ll be posting more before-and-afters, so stay tuned for lots of inspiration!
Oh, and for those of you attending the Northwest Flower and Garden Show next month, I hope to see you there! I’ll be speaking on Feb. 20th and 21st, as well as competing in a fun, live event called ‘Container Wars’!