Category: Garden Design

  • What Birds Need in Winter: Creating a Year-Round Habitat Garden

    What Birds Need in Winter: Creating a Year-Round Habitat Garden

    When attracting birds to the garden, we often think of setting out some bird feeders and maybe a bird bath. But like us, wild birds need a variety of things to thrive, and especially in inclement weather. As we lose many of our natural lands to development, supporting local and migrating birds through all of […]

  • Attracting Birds to the Pacific Northwest Garden

    Attracting Birds to the Pacific Northwest Garden

    Watching birds swoop and listening to them sing are some of the many joys of gardening.  But hanging up a few feeders isn’t enough to create a true backyard habitat for birds; inviting them to come and “stay a spell” takes careful consideration of their needs. So what exactly do you need to do to keep birds hanging […]

  • The Many Faces of Coreopsis: New Varieties to Love

    The Many Faces of Coreopsis: New Varieties to Love

    Coreopsis is a staple of the traditional flower garden because it’s long-blooming, easy to grow, and the profuse little daisy-like flowers can cheer up anyone if they’re having a bad day. Yet most people haven’t looked beyond the old-school varieties to learn about the wide array of colors available in this favorite, adaptable plant. These […]

  • Fabulously Fastigiate: Narrow Plants for Skinny Spaces

    Fabulously Fastigiate: Narrow Plants for Skinny Spaces

    Most gardeners have one of “those” spaces: an awkward, skinny location where you need that most unusual of plants, one that grows much taller than it does wide. We call these plants “fastigiate”, which means tall and narrow, or tower-like. Usually these spots in the garden are created by fences or walls, but you can […]

  • Landscape Designer’s Tools of the Trade: Best Measuring Tools

    Landscape Designer’s Tools of the Trade: Best Measuring Tools

    We’re coming up on that time of the year when most of us are doing more armchair gardening and garden planning than actual outside, in-the-dirt gardening, and one of the biggest challenges people encounter when they start measuring or plotting out their garden to create an overall plan is that their tools are woefully inadequate […]

  • Beguiling Bergenias: 5 Varieties for Dry Shade

    Beguiling Bergenias: 5 Varieties for Dry Shade

    While many gardeners find shade challenging enough, add in dry soil and deer, and the list of plants which will perform gets shorter and shorter. Yet Bergenia, an unassuming perennial with leathery evergreen leaves, does admirably under all of these conditions. Though you may have grown Bergenia in the past and been unimpressed by its tendency […]

  • Low-Maintenance Water Features: Downsizing Ponds and Fountains

    When you envision a water feature, it may evoke the gentle sound of a soothing waterfall, or perhaps your thoughts go to the splashing of a brook over rocks. Maybe a lovely pond with koi and water lilies will give you a sense of peace. What you don’t picture, though, is the hard work it […]

  • Association of Professional Landscape Designers 2014 Design Awards

    Association of Professional Landscape Designers 2014 Design Awards

    Every year, I look forward to reading about the Association of Professional Landscape Designers’ award-winning landscapes, because there is usually such a diverse array of winners. So I was honored to be asked by Susan Morrison, editor of APLD’s The Designer magazine, to write up descriptions of each of the award-winning landscapes for the fall […]

  • Garden Travel: Choosing the Best Garden Tour

    Garden Travel: Choosing the Best Garden Tour

    Two years ago, I had the experience of going on two amazing garden tours of the San Francisco Bay Area, one that I structured myself, and one that was arranged by Sterling Tours, where they bussed the whole group from garden to garden for four days and took care of everything, so all I had […]

  • Fabulous Fountain Grasses: “Temperennial” New Varieties

    While many in the perennial world seem to think that annuals have gone out of style, the “wow” factor they provide is undeniable. Tropical plants and annual flowers are perfect for temporarily filling in the spaces between slow-growing shrubs and trees, which is one of the many reasons books like Stephanie Cohen and Jennifer Benner’s […]

  • Designing a Meditative or Yoga Garden

    Guest post from Jan Johnsen, author of the new book Heaven is a Garden and my co-contributor over at Garden Design magazine. Yoga and gardens are a natural fit! Both are very personal endeavors – Yoga practice elevates our sense of wellbeing and makes us more aware of the present moment while gardens encourage us […]