When you look out your windows, do you see a place that invites you to come out and relax or do you look at your property line with a shrub or two, perhaps a tree. We took this border and made it a destination, a place to view all season. Some place to enjoy without leaving your property.
This ordinary back yard was on a bank so it was not very usable. We cut the soil 4′ from the foundation of the house to give a sitting wall and a planter. This gave us more level space to create the patio. A landing was created with stairs to get to the concrete paver patio. Perennials, shrubs, and a tree was planted to give privacy for the outdoor living room and to be able to observe continuous bloom throughout the season as you relaxed on the patio. Notice that this is not an expensive house but the outdoor living room makes the house!!! See the before below!
There are so many subtle elements that make a landscape beautiful. Two of the ones that I pay particular attention to is texture and shape. What do I mean by that? Some leaves are fuzzy, some are shiny, some are dull, some are delicate looking, some are evergreen and very thick and look like they could withstand the winter. There are many elements of design that create a beautiful landscape but if you pay attention to how you put the textures and shapes together, it will make the difference between a landscape that doesn’t quite measure up to your critique eye but yet you can’t quite put your finger on why. It could very well be that! When I am designing, I am thinking of the texture of the leaf as well as its shape. You also need to pay attention to the shape and the texture of the flower. If you put different varieties of plants with shiny leaves together, it doesn’t look right. You want to put something delicate next to something heavy, something shiny like a holly next to something dull like a taxus. A round leaf next to a grasses leaf or a needle, an evergreen next to a deciduous shrub or perennial. If the leaves are large, they need to be balanced with needles, grasses, or smaller
different shaped leaves around them.
Those are some of the subtle differences in designing that create beautiful spaces. Go out into your landscape and look at it with a critical eye and see if the suggestions I made could help you landscape be all that it can be.
What kind of mulch should I use? Facts about dyed mulch.
This city garden already had the privacy of an existing custom fence but the owner wanted to add a hot tub that was not just sitting on top of the ground. On the upper level, you walk onto the deck to get in the hot tub. If you want to sit out for awhile, you go down the bouldersteps to the lower level where there is a counter and bar stools to talk with the people in the hot tub.
Many people think that you have to treat shrub roses like you would hybrid tea roses by mulching their crown for winter and pruning them at a certain place. Not so with shrub roses. They are very low maintenance plants. Don’t be afraid to cut them back considerably in the spring so that they are reshaped to grow into the space provided later in the season. They can take major pruning. I would suggest that you wait to cut them back until they are about to push new growth for the season in case we have late frosts that might cause them to die back an inch or two.