I planted some tiny, upright Yews back in the Summer of 2019 in hopes that they'd, one day, form a cool hedge near the rear of our property. They made it through the first couple of growing seasons and by last October, I could *start* to envision the future when I looked at the area . My original inspiration for the wavy or curved hedge came via this post where I referenced a Bunny Williams garden that was, in turn, inspired by a Jacques Wirtz garden in Belgium. This year, some of the yews have put on new growth - adding height and filling out. Here, below, is a look at one of the tallest and the new growth from this season. I planted a few of the (initally) taller ones together in hopes that I could get that undulating look earlier by engineering some selective height pattern. Seems to be working in that the grouping of tall ones continue to lead the pack. Below, is another look at the hedge from the side. They need to keep growing both up and out - to close the gaps b
Showing posts with the label landscape inspiration
Photo of a pair of Wave Hill Garden Chairs from Wave Hill's official site here . This is not my photo above. Back earlier this year - after a trip to Paris with Nat - I went on and on and on about our visit(s) to Luxembourg Gardens. It was really the highlight of our trip together. I posted about how they were (as the French do!) using cocoa bean hull mulch , their tree boxes , growing vines between mature trees , their special metal path edging , how t hey have enormous stands of Chestnut trees that they prune in a special way , and their pretty spectacular espalier garden . And...in addition to swooning over all of those items, I posted about the chairs at the gardens . Those chairs. Really quite special. There are a couple of worthwhile 'histories of the Luxembourg Garden Chairs' posts on the web, but this one from Fermob - the distributor of the chairs - is the one I'd spend my time on. It is interesting to me to think about how a garden like Luxemb
Yesterday, I posted about the lobby of the Peabody Hotel in Memphis and mentioned that this was my first time visiting the city. I didn't get to see much of that the city has to offer - no Beale Street, etc - but I did have bbq from Central BBQ (which was recommended) and made a visit to another big landmark in town. That's what you see in the photo above: the entrance gates to the Fedex World Headquarters. You can find quite a bit online about the Headquarters project related to the building and grounds and the various building and LEED certifications that the project undertook, but I haven't been able to find any documentation about the landscape and landscape design. And that means that I can't - with certainty - understand what is going on with the entrance hedge that you see above. I snapped this photo out the van window while we were waiting to be admitted to the grounds and I was struck by the boxwood hedge that is in place out front of the campus
I've written pretty extensively on my love of columnar trees here on the blog. We have this stand of eight Frans Fontaine European Hornbeams (that you see some of above) and have this Weeping White Spruce that I picked up this season in our yard. And I've posted multiple times about the columnar street trees of Tokyo over the years. My love of columnar, narrow trees is something I've think I've well established here. But, that doesn't mean that I know everything about them! Recently, I read a note from Amy in from Pretty Purple about her take on narrow trees and thought it was worth sharing here. Those of you who read the blog might remember Pretty Purple Door from my post earlier this year talking about tulip bulb colors and how she outlined some of the ways to make colors work together (add yellow!). In her post about narrow trees, she talks about how/why these trees work in suburban yards (space, duh!). She includes some varieties that are
List of 20 "great shade plants" via Garden Design - story here . I've written many a post about shade gardening and how my mother was a 'shade gardener' and therefore I, too, am a shade gardener. So, whenever I come across a piece online about shade gardening, I pay attention. I recently saw this Garden Design story that highlights 20 plants that do well in the shade . Their list of 20 includes four trees, ten flowering plants and six foliage plants for shade - and it is those that I think are worth posting here for my reference. Six Foliage Plants for Shade: 1. Hostas 2. Coral Bells 3. Ferns 4. Caladium 5. Coleus 6. Japanese Forest Grass The companion to this list of great shade plants is this slideshow that talks about shade garden design . Posting this, too, as part of my landscape inspiration collection.
On Monday, I shared a Washington Irving quote about planting Oak Trees . From the preamble of that same book about Wisconsin trees comes this John Muir quote. Both of them moved me a bit and reinforced why I've been so fascinated with trees and getting a variety of them added to our landscape over the past two seasons. I haven't posted about John Muir here on the blog (a search that returns no results says that's a true statement), but anybody who watch like maybe more than four minutes of Ken Burns "The National Parks: America's Best Idea " series knows who John Muir was and what his impact on our country really is today. He's someone who's been called a "Secular Saint" for the work he did to not just preserve vast expanses of wilderness but also advocate for our communal understanding of the value that nature brings to all of us as a source of renewal, understanding and connection. There's a lot here that resonates with me -
I've posted a bunch of times about fountains and ponds here on the blog including a look at some designs that I'm documenting to save as inspiration for something that *could* eventually find the way into our backyard. In April, I showed this park pond in Woodridge . And last year, I posted about these bowl-like fountains that I found at Wannemakers . Today, I'm sharing this image that I took at the Fragrance Garden in the Morton Arboretum . It is a kind of hybrid between some of the pond ideas that I've been filing away AND the bowl/fountains that I've posted about, too. This one has a nice round elevated bowl that is perfectly level and lets the water roll off into a concrete bowl that has flagstone ringing it. This is a kind of interesting approach, but I wonder if having something like this that has A LOT of turbulence in it (water fall) limits the fish you can keep in this? Maybe they're smart enough to head to the calm waters? But, I also like
Back in January, I posted a photo showing off a Belgian Fence espalier that I fell in love with during a visit to Disneyland in Anaheim . During a recent trip to Southern California, we ended up going back to the park and I found that same espalier. I wanted to see if it had changed at all during the six months since we had seen each other last. That's it in the photo above during the end of July. And while there's some thickening-up of the branches, it is mostly the same as we last saw it. Due to their climate, one would think that there isn't much seasonal differences, right? They certainly get some growth in Spring and Summer, but Winter dormancy in Los Angeles isn't quite like what it is here in Zone 5B. Seeing this again, only enhanced - in my own mind - my desire to bring a Belgian Fence to our property. It is #2 on my 2019 To-do List , but here we are in (almost) mid-August and I haven't even acquired the trees. That isn't to say that I hav
Just a little bit over a week ago, I shared ANOTHER 1 post about the trees that I saw in Tokyo and talked about how I'm in the middle of a bit of a crush on Japanese horticulture. That crush certainly is most-focused on trees (both deciduous and coniferous) that are typically columnar in shape, but it also extends to gardens in general. This post is about a little hidden garden called the Gotenyama Garden that is right outside the Tokyo Marriott in Shinagawa. The same place that had that epic honeycomb setup I shared back in July . The Cherry Blossom tree that I included in a post with some Nagoya-area trees back in April of this year is from the very top of Gotenyama Garden, but that was as far as I was able to *get* to in the garden on my previous trip. Just a quick step outside to grab a photo. This time, I was able to wander in there a bit further. And it is pretty great! Starting with the image you see at the top that shows one of the intermediate levels of a
Just a couple of days ago, I posted the latest in my love letters to Luxembourg Gardens with my post about the chairs they have there . Prior to that post, I shared a series of things that I have been drawn to about the garden including posts about the vines growing between trees by the Medici Fountain , the tree boxes, the cocoa bean shell mulch and the colors of the flower beds that inspired our own raised planter mix . Today comes these little metal edges. They're half circles or little hoops and they kind of overlap each other to form an edge to the walking paths. What's that you say? Jake...you've been talking about a walking path in your own backyard for a while now. That's right ! I'd been thinking about using something a little bit more formal with uniform metal edging to keep the crushed granite in place, but this little bit of whimsy via Luxembourg Gardens has me wondering if I can think about using different types of edging? I mean, this
Way back in January of this year, I posted a link to a 2019 gardening trends piece that mentioned that "gabion-style walls" were going to be hot this year . If you aren't familiar with a gabion wall, go read that post where I unpack the whole thing . On a recent run to pick up a sandwich out by Seven Bridges one weekend, I came across Ike & Oak Brewing that has these large gabion walls set up around their patio. You can see a few of them in the photo above. On trend, it seems.
This is a photo I took from my cab one early morning that shows off some very large street trees in Tokyo that have been heavily pruned. I've posted about street trees like this before here . But, if you look closely behind those larger parkway or street trees, you'll see some smaller, very thin conifer trees that have been trained or pruned to be long and leggy in the style of the larger spruce/pine trees that I saw in the Imperial Gardens. Remember that photo of a beautiful tree that I posted from outside the Peninsula Hotel ? I think these little trees might be on their way towards something like that one: a big, strong singular trunk that can be wired to create some of that curvature and longer limbs with needles clustered on their tips. Scroll down on this post from my last trip to Tokyo where I visited the Imperial Gardens and you can see more of these mature conifer trees. #8 on my 2019 Garden To-Do List is to plant more conifers . I know I want to look at
This is the view that I was greeted with most of the days I was in the office in Tokyo doing meetings and client work on my trip in February. In the foreground where you see the yellowish/tanish ground is the Kōkyo-gaien or "Outer Garden" of the Tokyo Imperial Palace. If you move your eyes more towards the upper portion of the photo, you'll see the buildings of the Imperial Palace grounds with the large stone driveway area in between the two. The public grounds is the part that mere mortals like me are able to wander around in, but I think you can make your way around the Palace grounds and take in some nature. Due to time constraints and uncertainty, I was only able to enjoy the front, public outer gardens you see with the yellow/tan grounds. And that part was pretty spectacular. There's tons of things written on the Web about the plants/trees and animals that live in and around the Imperial Garden, but you can start with this entry on Wikipedia that
Back in November, I posted about how I was dreaming about a columnar conifer like this Columnar Norway Spruce that I found online . The Tree Center is selling 1 gallon versions of this tree for $50 , but with the pot being just one gallon, you can bet that that tree is tiny. Then, just a couple of days ago, I shared my 2019 To-Do Garden List that included as #8 on the list : do something *more* with conifers. I mentioned this very Columnar Norway Spruce. Funny thing that I just came across a photo on Instagram from Lurvey Landscape Supply - which happens to be in Volo, Illinois and is on the way to Twin Lakes. I've long admired their place as we drove by, but I assumed that it was a wholesale place. Turns out, I was wrong and they not only do retail business, they encourage visits via their social handles. (Side note: this is a different place than I posted about in regards to their topiaries , but is ON THE SAME ROAD - as we travel to Twin Lakes. I've noted in
In early January, I posted about 2019 garden trends and highlighted gabion-style walls (retaining walls made of loose stone/other items that are kind of bound by wire/mesh fence) while discussing how the style was appealing in what we're thinking about for our own backyard. But, while on vacation in Ko' Olina in Hawaii at Disney's Aulani, I noticed that they've selected a different wall style that they use across the resort. You can see it above and below in two different uses. Top is a waterfall along with retaining wall. Below the photo is just a retaining wall. In both of these cases, they've used what I presume to be a stone/rock veneer that is all one color and irregular in shape. Mostly round(ish) and stacked without thick mortar lines in most areas, but clean, straight lines at the top and on the corners/edges. Kind of the best of both worlds: natural shapes from the material, but clean lines from the edges. There's a stone veneer availab