Category: Small Spaces

One Window Box for Four Seasons window box design

One Window Box for Four Seasons

I love designing seasonal window boxes.  Not only because window boxes provide yet another opportunity to plant, but because they’re a fantastic way to add vertical interest in the garden. When standing in line at the grocery store, I can easily pass by all the fashion magazines, except for articles like ’10 Ways to Wear […]

Transforming a side yard from Blah to Beautiful Transforming a side yard

Transforming a side yard from Blah to Beautiful

I originally wrote this post eight years ago, but am re-writing it in honor of my friend who created this magical side yard, and who unexpectedly passed away two weeks ago. I often highlight this garden in various presentations, and it’s always a HUGE hit with the audience.   In fact, this garden receives bigger reactions […]

The Allied Box Factory in San Francisco The Allied Box Factory

The Allied Box Factory in San Francisco

My friend, Baylor Chapman, is one of those people who have chlorophyll running through their veins. She’s not only the founder of Lila B. Design, a San Francisco flower design studio, but one of my favorite authors ever (if you haven’t read Decorating with Plants, you’re missing out!) I was absolutely smitten with her (now […]

Four-Season Structure with Trellises, Tuteurs, and Obelisks four season structure with trellises tuteurs obelisks

Four-Season Structure with Trellises, Tuteurs, and Obelisks

Late winter is the perfect time to talk about adding four-season structure to the garden, using something as simple as a decorative tuteur, trellis, or obelisk. Take a look outside, and you’re likely to see bare branches beginning to swell and bulbs pushing their way through the soil. So before your garden wakes up in […]

Drab to Fab – My Front Entry Garden Makeover entry garden makeover

Drab to Fab – My Front Entry Garden Makeover

When designing the front entrance of a client’s new garden, I know I’ve succeeded in creating something special when: 1.  I spy someone walking down the street and they begin to slow their pace, 2.  They then lean in to take a closer look, and… 3. They whip out their cell phone to snap a […]

Transforming a Sloping Front Garden sloping front garden

Transforming a Sloping Front Garden

Sloping gardens are tricky to transform for various reasons – poor drainage and water run-off, soil erosion, and difficulty in maneuvering around, just to name a few.   I recently visited this garden to see how it’s fared one year later, and WOW – it’s amazing!    I usually tell my clients to wait until the second or […]

Plants for the 4 C’s: Corners, Cracks, Crannies & Crevices nooks corners cracks crannies

Plants for the 4 C’s: Corners, Cracks, Crannies & Crevices

When designing gardens, I never forget to focus on what I call the 4 C’s:  corners, cracks, crannies, and crevices.  When looking at a garden, my philosophy is this:  any bare spot is a planting opportunity.  And, I mean ANY bare spot.  A little nook where two stones don’t quite meet up, or a gap […]

Ornamental Oxalis in the Garden oxalis

Ornamental Oxalis in the Garden

I love oxalis in my garden! Before you all think I’ve lost my mind, I’m not talking about the horribly invasive oxalis weed that threatens to take over lawns and gardens everywhere.   I’m talking about the many varieties of colorful and well-behaved ornamental oxalis hybrids. The ornamental varieties often get overlooked in the nurseries, not […]

5 Ways to Design with Containers 5 ways to design containers

5 Ways to Design with Containers

I’ve yet to see a garden that doesn’t have at least a few planted containers included in its design.  Whether artfully placed near the front door, grouped on the back patio, or perhaps incorporated into a garden bed, containers are beloved by gardeners everywhere. When I plant containers in my own garden, they’re often serving […]

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