Showing posts with label Focal Point. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Focal Point. Show all posts

Friday, July 11, 2014

Three Best Mistakes to Make in Your Landscape

Choose to make garden mistakes on the side of too simple, too little, too plain.
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Better to want more later than dig-up, move plantings, replace a now-thought-cheap/tacky-bench, regret the shape-style-color-of.....
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Long term, cute in a garden grates.  Whimsy is better.
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Be wary of 'words' in a garden.  They hold thoughts hostage that should flow randomly, Cole Porter's, Don't Fence Me In.
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Of course there are exceptions to all of the above.  Indeed.


This morning, above/below, Tomato & Hydrangea.  Perfect name for a spiked tea & scones cafe.


Feeding cats & chickens, assessing what the night wrought & will it rain today.


Tomato still in its peat pot with cellophane wrap & tags.  Awaiting a much larger pot & bamboo cane trellis.  Perhaps this weekend?  Hydrangea blossoms hanging lower, petal margins crispier, will I cut to dry or leave to enjoy from the windows?


Calm.  Boring is good.  Idle chit-chat in the head.
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Something new to learn about Social Media.  Facebook cannot control pictures during war.  Images seen cannot be unseen, merely absorbed into a safe, prayerful, place.
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Again, my Garden working for me.
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Have you watched the award winning foreign film, Burnt by the Sun ?    "The film depicts the story of a senior Red Army officer and his family during the Great Purge of the late 1930s in the Stalinist Soviet Union. Like a tragedy bySophoclesBurnt by the Sun takes place over the course of one day."  Wikipedia
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Oddly, it's beautiful. 
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Glad it taught my heart to assimilate what I saw yesterday within mundane ubiquity of beauty in a tomato & hydrangea.  The gift of choices, health to act upon them, perhaps a dinner party in late summer honoring the last of the tomatoes.  With dried hydrangeas in a vase.
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This is freedom.
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Garden & Be Well,  XO Tara
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Pics taken in my garden this morning.
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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.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

2nd Best Design Rule for a Focal Point in the Garden

  Their French architecture manor house is in a subdivision with ubiquitous, and aging, landscaping.
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Fabulous timing for me to design.
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Hidden in the small backyard, below.
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Lucky me, able to work with this piece.  Now, their subdivision foundation plantings are a garden & this bench is between a pair of large windows with an espalier Sasanqua behind it.
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Don't need to know a thing about gardens to know this bench, above, trumps leggy green builder's meatballs.
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Then the story.
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She told me how decrepit the bench is and I could have it.  My hunger to create beautiful gardens is obviously the greater ego over owning this bench.
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No hesitation, telling her, "I would love the have the bench but will love it more in your garden to make me look good as a Garden Designer."
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And, I know she'll fall in love with the bench in its new location.


Then, the story of provenance.
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An estate sale.  2 beautiful ladies lost their home to a shoddy renovation gone bad and to court.  Their home/garden had been in books/magazines including one of my hardcover books.  Worse, the ladies did not win in court yet the contractors were at fault.
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Hopefully client/me will catch up with these incredible women again.
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The 2nd best Focal Point rule?  Just Let It Touch.  Let the foliage 'just touch' the focal point.
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1st rule of focal points?  Focal Points must be so wonderful they will be fought over at your estate sale.
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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.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
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.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
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, June 13, 2014

Lamps in the Garden

The old altar table, below, has a new life.


In Susanne Hudson's garden.


 Doesn't every garden need lamps, books, gravel, art, a copper wash tub, large mirror, and


hydrangeas too?
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Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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Pics taken last week in Susanne's garden, it was on the Penny McHenry Hydrangea Festival tour.
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For a beautiful garden & home filling you with joy, become my client, local/on-line.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
Construction by Award Winning:


Shaefer Heard Construction, licensed home-builder, renovation - new construction.  Heard's Landscaping a unit of SHC.  3 decades of service.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Elements of a Garden: What do you see?


Formal with informal.
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Designed garden with controlled woodland.
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Garden rooms flow in contrast to each other.
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Color theme, green-brown-white.
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High density & low density for maximum pollinator habitat.
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Every garden room needs at least 1 cone shape.
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Cone shapes draw eyes to the sky.
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Cone shapes are hard to design, easy to do too many.
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Pair of cone shapes at an entry way expand the invitation.
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Contrasting shades of green,
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Contrasting sizes of foliage.

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Designed for structure 12 months of the year.
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Clipped hedging.
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Axis.  Double axis.
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Paths easy to walk.
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Fencing & gates chosen to flow with the house.  How do I know?  I just do.
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Stone in the paths matches stone elsewhere in the garden and on the home.  How do I know?  I just do.
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What did you see when you looked at this pic?
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Lost provenance on the pic.
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For a beautiful garden & home filling you with joy, become my client, local/on-line.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
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, April 30, 2014

Bunny Williams Potager: Complex, Pretty & Easy Life Support

Have seen potagers, below, for decades.  Across Europe & USA.  
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Potager: flowers, vegetables, herbs, clipped edging.
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Recent epiphany about what a potager is.


Mixing flowers & herbs with vegetables increases yields up to 80%.  How?  Increasing pollinator habitat.
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Clipped hedging keeps chickens out.  Chickens destroy vegetables/herbs/flowers, but eat harmful bugs. 
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Plus, you get chicken shit.
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Instead of a merely sweet, pretty, easy, garden design style, the potager was
a life support system throughout much of history.  Terrible history, with subsistence living, wars, plagues, no anti-biotics.
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How did anyone, aka me, not know this about a potager?  My grandmother knew these things.  My mother falls within the scope of Betty Friedan, The Feminine Mystique.  The generation of women leaving farms/agrarian knowledge behind to live a modern life raising children, tending house with a maid's help, and no work outside the home.  Oh, the drudgery of it all and yes I'm one of those grown children crying throughout, The Help, every time I watch it.
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" Friedan says that this change in education arrested girls in their emotional development at a young age, because they never had to face the painful identity crisis and subsequent maturation that comes from dealing with many adult challenges.[9]"
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Sinful forgetting, a client named this loss of agrarian knowledge.
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Recently, because I now have chickens, mom has told stories about Grandma's chickens.  Grandma was an RN & head nurse at her hospital in Augusta, GA.  throughout those years she kept chickens and incubated many.  Mom was an only child and said how she hated the time her mother spent with the chickens.  From the stories I know Grandma raised significantly more chickens than her family needed or could feed easily with food scraps.  Why?  Grandma was giving away eggs and laying hens to every woman she met who needed a helping hand.   
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Garden & Be Well,      XO Tara
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Pic Bunny Williams
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For a beautiful garden & home filling you with joy, become my client, local/on-line.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
Construction by Award Winning:
Shaefer Heard Construction, licensed home-builder, renovation - new construction.  Heard's Landscaping a unit of SHC.  3 decades of service.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Words: Use with Caution in Styling

With some people, years ago, I learned not to share joyous news.  They took delight in diminishing my joy.  Another epiphany, not too long after, 'I choose the plants in my garden, choose the people in my life.'  Within seconds eject button pushed on several persons.
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Lightening life's load was instant.  No regrets decades later.  


Words in the garden, be wary of using them.  Words, most often, dominate any mood, any narrative, weather, ephemeral delicate beauties, etc.
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Gardens speak, without words.  It is the human cheapening their language.
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Instead of admonishing with a picture proving my 'words' I've chosen an exception.  Words in a garden providing pleasure.  If my garden needs a sign, 'Spring has Sprung', do not ever, in a lifetime galaxy of black holes, hire me.  My garden decadently overflows spring's bounty.  Front door, above, is not my home/garden, it belongs to a young woman.  Her mom renovated/styled the home, to perfection.  'Words', included !
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Love exceptions, and breaking rules.
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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.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me for your group, local/out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Books by Tara Dillard, Amazon
.
Tara Dillard & Associates Design: farm to city pied-a-terre.
.
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, March 24, 2014

Planting in Drifts + Ultimate Status Symbol

Several hundred acres, several barns, several thousand bulbs to plant.
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Constraint?  Bulbs must look like they've been on property for a century.
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What to do?
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Toss out every known morsel of garden design since 1960.  (Easy, been there/done that.)
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Plant in blowzy DRIFTS.


Drifts must be organic tear drops.  Stubby or elongated + versions in between.



From inside the barn, below, to the house.


Did you know this about Garden Design?  If you create beauty in one direction, it's beautiful in its opposite.  
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Notice the foot path, above?  
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How few know a foot path through meadow is one of life's ultimate status symbols.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pics taken at jobsite yesterday.
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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.
                                                                                 .
Garden books by Tara Dillard, Amazon

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Little Input, Big Impact

A bit of meadow, stretch of wild wood, bench.  Done.


In the depths of winter, still, one of the best invitations.
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Pictorial definition, LITTLE INPUT, BIG IMPACT.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO Tara
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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.
                                                                                 .
Garden books by Tara Dillard, Amazon

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Front Porch: Color Choices for Views & Guests

Built in the late 50's for the Queen's sister, Mount Corbett has a few original pieces remaining, below.
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This table wasn't designed for meals, propping feet, or bridge.
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This table leveraged conversation, cocktails, cigarettes (I can hear, & smell, the Zippo lighters shutting), & considering the era, 'stuff'.
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More than views, colors were mutedly chosen to show case people.
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How I would love to go back to the early years and see the clothes, hair, jewels.



Instead,


alone on the veranda, I was the color.
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My Ken Doll did  construction & landscaping at Mount Corbett a few years ago, hence my afternoon lolling in the pool & enjoying views while he gabbed with friends at the estate.
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Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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Pics taken this month in Jamaica.  We both wanted to prune the hedge blocking the views.  Alas, or maybe good for you, Mount Corbett is for sale.
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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.
                                                                                 .
Garden books by Tara Dillard, Amazon

Monday, February 10, 2014

Focal Point: Don't Compete

If you have an eyesore place a focal point nearby.


If Providence gives you a focal point, don't compete.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pic taken at lunch yesterday.  Jamaica.
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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.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me to speak to your group, local or out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Garden books by Tara Dillard, Amazon.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Elements of a Focal Point: Sandra Jonas

Focal point, double plinthed, on axis, Tara Turf, contrasting colors. contrasting textures, contrasting formal/informal, high density/low density, pollinator habitat, Getrude Jekyll delightful, Jane Austen narrative, and best of all 


this is my beloved friend's garden, Sandra Jonas.  We've been across Europe & USA together studying Garden Design.
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Wonder what she thinks I see here?
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Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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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.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me to speak to your group, local or out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Garden books by Tara Dillard, Amazon.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Refreshing: Interior Plants Do Not Look Store Bought

Notice something extraordinarily different about the plants styling the dining room, below?


They look as if they came from the conservatory on site.
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Quite rare to see this attention to detail, though saucers should be included with the coleus & orchid for a complete narrative.  (I have clients on tours, in magazines, TV, so, yes, I'm paid to be this particular!)
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And that doesn't begin to mention the delicious focal point on axis with the vanishing threshold.
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Nice, indeed.  Well done.
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Garden & Be Well,      XO Tara
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Pic Architectural Digest.  Cote de Texas had the pic on a post about wall paper recently.
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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.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me to speak to your group, local or out-of-state.
                                                                                 .
Garden books by Tara Dillard, Amazon.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Sweet Serendipity: Tuteurs + Lights

A picture note for the garden.


Shopping list: lights.  Prefer to make my own tuteurs.
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Twigs/wood can be found easily.
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Why have I not done this sooner?  Must get it done during this season of early nightfalls.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pic, lost provenance.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

When a Garden Crosses the Line

Gardens begin inside your house.


Your garden is art on the wall.
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Gardens must be a backdrop to lives lived inside.  Beauty to enrich spirit, increase joy, diminish sadness.
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If you don't have this now, with your garden, you have a surprise awaiting.  This is what happens when your garden crosses the line, one of the best & most enduring friendships of your life.  Once you do have it, and see another with the same type of relationship, voila, a new friend.  
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Garden & Be Well,    XO Tara
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Pic Hen House.  
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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.
.
Garden books by Tara Dillard, Amazon.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Team Elements to Touchdown

Urn on plinth.


If Garden Design were parsed like football stats, urn/plinth stats are touchdowns.
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I adore the team  formations for every touchdown urn/plinth.  Above, backdrop hedge, lollipop standard sentinels, lawn line defense at a 90% run, contrasted textures/colors, zone coverage for heights, even the fake out play drawing eyes to the sky.
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This urn is a Heisman Trophy.  Once & done.  No maintenance, planting, watering......beautiful 24/7 for decades.
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Mostly, the touchdown urn/plinth is partially executed.  The teamwork backing urn/plinth isn't played.
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In metaphor, urn/plinth stories can be told thru: music, ballet, the bible, race car driving.....they're all teamwork.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO Tara
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Pic Faux Fuchsia.
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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.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me to speak to your group, local or out-of-state.
.
Garden books by Tara Dillard, Amazon.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Ricky Lauren: The Hamptons: Food, Family, and History

   

Ricky Lauren the Hamptons Food, Family and History, is a good read for recipes, voyeurism into a sweet lifestyle & history of place.  

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A job in Alabama this year had me at Auburn University taking a government regulated landscape certification exam to legally put plants in the ground.  I took Lauren's book to mark recipes for any waiting room slowing my pace.  


More than recipes Ricky maps the decades of her marriage, raising children and stays at their various Hamptons homes.  She pulled me in.  You see my list from Alabama, below.  Ricky gives breakfast, picnic, lunch & dinner recipes.  Of course she had me at the picnics.  Redolent of the life changing picnics Jenny, my mother-in-law, created.


Fresh vegetables with angel pasta was the first recipe I cooked.  If you like Julia Child/James Beard you can taste their influence.  Ricky put her mark on it, in fewer steps + greater simplicity while leaving all the flavor.
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You know I passed the exam.  Alas, had to study for it, drive several hours, pay the exam fee, pay the licensing fee, pay the police ticket parking fee for parking where I was told to park, then discovered the license was only good for a few weeks.  Not even a year.  And that parking ticket?  Auburn was in the newspaper not long afterward for a parking ticket scam !
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Yet, I did get my Ricky Lauren list.  Go me.
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Chandelier, top pic, proves you cannot have Too-Much-Chandelier in the garden.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Top pic Harpers Bazaar.  Bottom pic my harvest table.
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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.
.
Award winning speaker, hire me to speak to your group, local or out-of-state.
.
Garden books by Tara Dillard, Amazon.