Showing posts with label gravel. Show all posts
Showing posts with label gravel. Show all posts

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Garden Design: Hydrangeas in Pots

Ripe. 
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 Notice, below, the color echo?  Wonder where the axis leads from the paired entry?  Garden design tenants are rife: spikes with rounds, all layers accounted for sky-canopy-walls-floor, contrasting textures, mystery, repetition, copied, color theme, change thru the seasons, low maintenance, maximum pollinator habitat, no chemicals needed, a historical template.
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Does your garden tell me who you are?  This one does, as all good gardens must.
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Under the Tuscan Sun, Frances Mayes, her sister asked, "Have you seen her house."  Frances knew, she's asking, "Who is she, what is she like?"
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Hydrangeas do great in pots.  Choose mopheads, PeeGee, Tardiva, Limelight, etc.
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Worried about hydrangea's brown sticks in winter?  Move on from that chapter, it's too shallow for you.  Good Garden Design backdrops normal changes thru the seasons in beauty.
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Focal points change by the day.


Tara Turf, above/below.  Garden Design is fierce in this garden.
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Fierce?   Simplicity is hard, keeping elements of the poverty cycle is hard, good Garden Design is hard.
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 Getting to this iteration of his garden, I know the gardener grew through, and blew through, many life chapters.  Many.
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 Self -will ended.  Gardenese is spoken here.  A life language.  More, the language of Providence.


Garden Design's status symbols, above, are now gravel drives, no edging.  Tara Turf.


At the front end of studying the best historic Garden Design across Europe I 'got' that.
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If you want this type of Garden Design, I can do that for you.
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If you want a Garden Design to meet HOA requirements, and no more, I will not do that, anymore.
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If you wish to push your HOA rules to the max, and have to ask for approval, I will be happy to do your Garden Design.
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Understand, I've blown thru chapters and books, and continents, to get here with Garden Design.
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Ripe.
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Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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Pics taken this month.  Top pic best shows the humidity in the air.  Was with Susanne Hudson, Liz Tedder, and poor Martha Tate (we missed yo) had to zip in/out ahead of us.
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Think you can do Hydrangeas in Pots like this?
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Takes the full arsenal of Garden Design.
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Which is either simple or will take you a life time.
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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.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Elements of Simplicity in Garden Design


Plain?  No, totally designed.
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 Embellishment?  Why?  What is that about?  Lack of confidence, knowledge of the wrong sort, arrogance against Providence?

 Tara Turf.  Gravel from the local river.
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Century old bricks made in Milledgeville, GA, an hour's drive.
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I designed the buttress copying an antebellum cotton warehouse seen near Atlanta.
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The walled garden was the client's idea.  
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It was my good fortune to design & site it.
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Oddly, with total confidence.
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Whence does that come?  Truly, a subdivision child ca. 1960, living in a subdivision still.
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Degreed in USA horticulture, not taught how to  design a good garden to save anyone's soul.  Much less my own.
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Off I went, $20 bills stuffed singly & slowly, somehow paying for 2+ decades of studying the best historic gardens across Europe.
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With this project, 300 acres, I learned what the real focus of those decades had been. 


Garden design working with land & home.
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More, mind/body/spirit.
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Land & home, team members with the garden design.  Literally, the best performers with the most talent.
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That college degree in horticulture?  Training to work against the land, ignore every gift of Providence.


Doubt any of my college professors could give a concise sentence about the style of Henry Repton.  In, "Observations on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening, Repton wrote:
“The perfection of landscape gardening consists in the four following requisites. First, it must display the natural beauties and hide the defects of every situation. Secondly, it should give the appearance of extent and freedom by carefully disguising or hiding the boundary. Thirdly, it must studiously conceal every interference of art. However expensive by which the natural scenery is improved; making the whole appear the production of nature only; and fourthly, all objects of mere convenience or comfort, if incapable of being made ornamental, or of becoming proper parts of the general scenery, must be removed or concealed”.
The garden views, above/below, totally designed.  Providence reigns, human arrogance replaced with a pride in unveiling Nature's gifts.


Henry would know this garden.
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Beyond the Tara Turf, above, is my best design work.  Views across a Natural pasture into woodland.  .
Curiously, this type of gardening is perfect for the starter home on a postage stamp with little budget.  Instead, that type of home is built with an expensive landscape.  Lawn with mowing/chemicals/fertilizers, bushes needing regular pruning & mulching, nothing to shade the house reducing hvac, nor fruit trees to feed the household, certainly not any focal points on axis with the house to feed the spirit.
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Truth, with your full intellect, if you demand more from your landscape you will have it.
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By the time anyone hires me, that choice has been made.  Incredible to work for people who have engaged with their own lives.  Same, when I lecture.  Every chair filled with people who have engaged with their life.  They aren't there for me, nor am I, we are there for the same reason as Henry.
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Garden & Be Well,  XO Tara
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Pics taken at a jobsite earlier this year.
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The capitalized words? Used in the vintage sense.  Underlined sentence at the top?  Describing myself on the front end.  This has not been a boring ride !
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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.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

How to Site the Perfect Backyard Fire Ring

Fabulous begins here, below.  Alas, merely a few minutes old.  Mulch, literally a dead brown color, is prominent while evergreen groundcover, dots of green below, grow into a mass sheet of lush green.
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Slope is nice, not long.  Did you notice the trick creating greater drama & depth?
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Steps lead from wider to narrower.  
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Steps are pre-cut, cheaper to install than natural fieldstones.
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Fire ring with circle of Adirondack chairs.  A no-brainer siting the fire ring on axis with the steps.  
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Chairs are new, curing, and will be stained  to flow with color choices from the home's colors.
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More, this is a double axis.


Looking back at the house, below, the steps & fire ring are sited on axis with the gable's peak.

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Landscape design is not voodoo or what feels 'fun' or includes 'stuff' just-because-you-can-afford/rescue-it, but a true science, with sprinkles of art.
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From your home's architecture most landscape design flows.
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The house dictates, then land, then distance from the house aka 'use', then sun/shade.
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When this garden, above, is ready for entertaining how many guests will realize the myriad layers of thought about the steps or siting the fire ring or choosing color for the Adirondack chairs?  Doesn't matter, they will know it 'feels' right.
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Often enough, true geometry for axis siting cannot be done due to 'blah-blah'.  Surprise, faux geometry works.
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Notice where the Adirondack chairs are sited, in addition to circling the fire ring?
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Perfect distance for resting the feet on the fire ring stones.
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Yes, made the clients sit with me & my general contractor and we adjusted the chairs.  Of course the rest of the team was working/digging/installing irrigation and see us sitting with our feet propped up !  
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Love my job.
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Another design element, fire ring stones are unmortared fieldstones.  Wanted the contrast of rustic, at this distance, to the formality of the home.
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This rustic-ness an element of the 'poverty cycle'.  Studying the best historic gardens across the globe for decades it is obvious which elements are consistent in each.  And, the poverty cycle is one of those elements.
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Neo-similar to Temple Grandin, I pay attention deeply to patterns in visuals of good gardens.
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If you haven't seen the movie about Temple put it in your queue.  Amazing, and humbling, learning from another so different from oneself.

Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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Took the pics at a job site this spring.  When is siting a fire ring not about merely siting a fire ring?  Always.   
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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.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Design Rule: Hint of Invitation

In the bright morning light, below.
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Hint of something, saying, come-this-way.
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Gravel path, boxwood, bench & hydrangeas.
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Paths should engage: foot, eye, mind, heart.

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The language of invitation.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pic taken this month in Susanne Hudson's garden.
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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
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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.


Friday, January 24, 2014

The Proper Direction of Stewardship in a Garden


"We discover G*d's presence inside whenever we override our ego's pride and courageously put aside all that we hide."  Rabbi David Aaron


From the mailbox & gravel drive, above, my best work begins.  
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Getting here was decades.  Learning simplicity & the humility to let the site speak without reference to my 
skills.  Honestly, I wonder how Providence has time for anyone else, attention lavished upon my character defects never wains.
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Nor must I 'own' this site.  My pride/ego is rooted in the work.  A walled orchard is built, a gravel drive spread, potager planted and more, and with each, they are taken by the owner's hands before my feet leave the site.
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I'm in love with this site, and so is the owner.  It is very much the 3 of us.  That is how strongly we relate to these acres.  She is a good steward of her acres and in return I get to watch her acres in stewardship of her.
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Gifts of loving these acres arrive in many forms & layers.  Telling us we are doing the right thing/s.
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Tasha Tudor's favorite line of poetry, 'take joy', in action.  Joy is always there, but it must be taken.
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What does any of this have to do with you?  Stewardship.  Not your stewardship of the garden.  But the stewardship your garden has for you.  Do you have that in your life?  Are you in relationship with your garden?  Does it fill you with joy, enrich your spirit, give you energy just seeing it from the windows of your home?  Good news, it's not about acres & money.  It's putting the garden into relationship with your home & life with historic templates.
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This reads a bit like an altar call.  Ironic, she says her deep feeling with her garden is 'abiding', I feel 'atonement' in mine.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO Tara
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Pic at jobsite this month.  Silent Partner, I can see your face reading this and know you understand the metaphorical use of filthy lucre.
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My garden is one of my best friends, unconditionally loving, rich in narrative.  A language I can understand.  People?  No, easier to understand my garden.  
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  1.  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, January 20, 2014

Simple Manipulations: How Many Do You See?

Do you see the manipulations, below?


Seating to create a gathering spot, figs for summer shade/winter sun over the benches, drystack stone wall cut into a slight slope forcing foot traffic into defined directions, formal boxwood framing pastoral views, tapering stone wall allowing only small machinery into the pasture from this direction, gravel terrace ready for men-trucks-heavy equipment, horses, or a catered soiree for 100.
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And, of course, it must all look a century old, be easy to maintain, and provide interest 24/7.
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When something appears simple, it rarely is.  Same is true of people.
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Garden & Be Well,       XO Tara
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Pic at a jobsite last week.
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Do you know the maximum pollinator habitat, above?  Seriously, can you verbalize what creates the best pollinator habitat above?  Answer at bottom.
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Being simple requires each of the decades I've been learning about gardens.  Better, being simple in a garden, takes me where Joseph Campbell says our eternity is.  Ironic, in this American life/era, to have found my bliss in work.
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  1. Joseph Campbell - Wikiquote

    en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Joseph_Campbell
    Where we had thought to travel outward, we shall come to the center of our own .... And the experience of eternity right here and now is the function of life.
  2. More, being simple connects me to the message/life work of Wendell Berry & E.M. Forster.  
  3. Wendell Berry Earns Highest Humanities Award, Lectures on ...

    sojo.net/.../wendell-berry-earns-highest-humanities-award-lectures-econo...
    Apr 24, 2012 - On Monday evening, Wendell Berry delivered the 41st annual ... The title hinges on E.M. Forster's 1910 novel Howards End, which Berry said, ...
  4. .
  5.  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.
  6. Answer to question, above,  High density/low density, open meadow/dense woodland.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Why Ugly is a Good Start

 Already degreed in horticulture & engineering before studying historic landscapes across Europe there was a major potent element to be learned, Nothing is unconsidered in a garden, nothing.


Subsidiary parking court, below, is behind the garden, above.


What are you leaving unconsidered in your garden?
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Garden & Be Well,  XO Tara
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Pic at jobsite.  Garden Design is mostly not about plants.  I adore ugly problems.
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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.
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Garden books by Tara Dillard, Amazon.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Ridiculous Fun vs. Doing-the-Right-Thing

Tell me again why Americans are so wedded to green meatball foundation plantings.
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Proof, below, you can still have those green meatballs at the foundation.


Today's assignment: In your mind, take away your foundation plantings, replace with furnishings-gravel-urns-plinths, from above, in any permutation that is ridiculous fun & fabulous.  Really, do this, complete the assignment.  You have the rest of the day.
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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.
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Garden books by Tara Dillard, Amazon.
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Pic via Pinterest.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Doorstep Gardening


A bit of vine & gravel to the house.


Repeated across continents for centuries.
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Affordable to install, inexpensive to maintain.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pic via A Bloomsbury Life.  After years of lust for gravel & vine I did it for myself.  Still curious why I waited so long.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Do You Know When to Edge a Gravel Drive?

Soon the crape myrtles will arc & touch over the gravel lane.


Designing this century old property back-to-its-history the edges of the gravel lane, above, have been designed with extreme concern.  Perhaps you think they are undone?  Not considered?  Messy?  Amazing how subdivision landscape design taints perceptions.  I can see Flannery O'Conner walking down this lane not a curbed concrete ribbon in one of today's subdivisions.
 

Yet, at the end of the crape myrtle lane, above, a parking court is tucked in with neatly clipped hedges & gravel edged with cobblestones.  Formality.  Bang.  Huge garden design decisions not meant to be 'noticed', but, deeply intuited.  Even by those not interested in gardens.
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Garden & Be Well,    XO Tara
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Pics at jobsite last week.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Create Mystery

A path into my tiny back garden, below.


 A coop, conservatory, flagstone terraces & etc. are slipped with precision into their setting.


Who wants to see everything at once?  Discovery & delight are fundamentals of garden mystery.
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Plants are allowed to be themselves.  Mostly.  Camellias, azaleas, hydrangeas, tea olive, roses, boxwood, itea, aucuba, akebia, daphne.  Something is blooming every day, all year.  Now, it's hydrangeas & crape myrtles.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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pics taken last week in my garden.  The entire lot is a mere 8500sq. ft.  Paths are integral to creating mystery in my garden.  

Friday, July 26, 2013

Detail: Furniture on Gravel

Furniture on gravel.


A common scenario, below.


Furniture will sink unevenly.  Soil was dug to place a brick under each table leg, gravel lapping to each.  Voila, no bricks showing.
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This is not a job for mere mortals, the slab of marble weighs more than my truck.  After using the bubble level the guys are making sure the marble is also set equidistant.  These 'small' tasks always blow my estimates of, "Oh that should only take a few minutes."
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Garden & Be Well,   XO Tara
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top pic John Saladino's garden, bottom pic a client garden.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Quaint Trick to Nestle Your Focal Points

Why do most focal points look like projectiles from Mars that burned thru the atmosphere and landed  in someones yard?


Studying the best focal points in historic gardens across Europe for 20+ decades I noticed a quaint trick to nestle focal points into a garden.  I call it the rule of, just-let-it-touch.
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Had to smile when I discovered Martha Stewart doing it, above.
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Her pruner knows EXACTLY how to just-let-it-touch.
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Martha's blog has numerous slides with most posts that load quickly.  If you loved a good slide show, back in the day, her presentations are the closest I've seen.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pic via Martha Stewart.   Heads-up to the 'bench' focal point.  Is it not level and facing traffic?  Obviously a pet p-e-a-v-e.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Covershot Garden Design

Gardens must have rooms which includes halls, foyers, parlors, and the roundabout, below.


Leaning left, below, at the roundabout.


Leaning right at the roundabout, below.


In the roundabout, below, turned & shooting back.  What is this called?  Double Axis.


Same hydrangea, above/below, a few days apart.


Same roundabout, below, different axis.


See your garden thru the camera.  More, see your garden in February thru the camera.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pics this month in Susanne Hudson's garden.
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Where today, in your garden, can you take covershot pics?  No?   Why live that way?  
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Yesterday, late afternoon, fuse to my Conservatory blew.  Tried all the breakers, no go.  Immediate call to 'my guys'.  One will be here today.  It is not too much to ask that Conservatory chandelier & lamps light my days & nites on view from every angle I live. 

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Let Simplicity Serve Your Needs

There isn't a lot here yet the magic is intense.


Narrative.  Simplicity.  Choices.
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"What plant should I put here?", I'm asked often.  It's not the right question, in return I ask, "How do you want to live?"
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pic The Vintaquarian.  Remember this trinity: Narrative.  Simplicity.  Choices.  What is your garden, today, answering?

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Driveway Design

A driveway.


Sound of gravel.
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Tapestry hedge.
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Oh my this is good.
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Garden & Be Well, XO Tara
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Pic Whimble.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Japanese

Invitation.  




 "...eternals as applicable in the smallest of spaces as in the vast acres of a country house garden." Sir Roy Strong.  Above, vast as a mountain range.


Water Mirror, miroir d'eau, above.




Water breaks the footprint of the Tea House, above.  Small touch, huge impact.


Looking outward, above, from the bamboo window seen coming in the entry, top pic.


Framing the view, above, for centuries this has been done.  Is a brick ca. 1960 ranch less worthy?


Hidden, then meandering, above, then spilling into the pond, below.


Why, above, do we like walking on water?

 At the minimum, 2 stones.  Male & female.  Earth & sky.  Ying & yang.  Even the shadows are benevolent.


Leaving the Japanese garden from its other side, above, into a pecan orchard.
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Garden & Be Well,   XO Tara
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Pics taken Massee Lane Garden last weekend.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Massee Lane: Millstone Collection in the Garden

Millstones collected for a lifetime & sited in David Strother's garden, now a public garden.





  Many were slave made.


Today, 1 millstone in a garden is special.  Hard to find, expensive, and getting it home & setting it in the garden, for most, requires men & equipment.





Concrete piers support these in the pond.


Doormat.


Only a handful are setting on the ground.  Showing off.


As time passed this pair, above, could have been sited where the evergreens are.  Their value, literally & historically, of incredible value.
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Garden & Be Well,     XO Tara
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Pics taken at Massee Lane Gardens, Fort Valley, GA, last weekend.  From their site, "The formal camellia garden at Massee Lane had its beginnings as the private garden of David C. Strother in the 1930's. He surrounded his farmhouse with camellias. Year by year, he moved out the garden borders to accommodate the camellias he wanted to plant. It is said he never included a camellia he didn't like, even if it were given to him! Mr. Strother donated this land to the American Camellia Society for its headquarters in 1966. 

Mr. Dave collected millstones and road markers - the millstones he brought into the garden have become a trademark. The old wire road mile markers, some with the mile number still visible, add another dimension to the garden. 

More than a thousand varieties of camellias are here, plus sasanquas, fragrant tea olives, Lady Banksia roses, and delightfully scented daphnes.

Enjoy a walk down Dave's Ville Walk - lined with his favorite camellia, 'Ville de Nantes', and admire his handiwork and smell the delicate aromas of tea olives. Always feel free to leave the pathways and walk among the camellias to find your own personal favorite."
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The daphnes & tea olives were blooming, and almost overwhelming.