If I wasn’t careful I would cover my entire property with flowers, trees and shrubs. But there is something refreshing about pulling back, becoming more simple and allowing the natural rhythm of the landscape to unfold. I’m learning restraint and allowing the understated to become revealed. (more…)
This past fall I finally put in a deer fence and added a gate to my small garden. I have a white Victorian house and after much thought decided to paint the fence and gate BLACK. In fact, “Panther Black.” It was kind of daring.
I painted it in the early spring before any flowers or leaves on the trees. It was a surprise to some, but I liked it, but now that the peonies are out and the garden is in full force, I think it’s a marvel.
Here is a beautiful quote from the curator of the Portland Japanese Garden, Sadafumi Uchiyama. He expresses the essence of a tea garden and for me, the essence of Japanese art and culture.
The first winter storm has arrived. The garden has been swept clean of leaves and we’re ready for the long, cold months ahead. The winter garden is very beautiful with just the first dusting of snow. It’s at this time that we see clearly how the evergreens and fence give the garden its structure. By mid-summer they will have faded into the background hidden by lush ferns, grasses, shrubs, and trees.
It’s a small garden and I had endless design possibilities. I could have created a formal English style garden or even modeled the backyard on my favorite Japanese designer Mirei Shigemori’s checkerboard moss garden. But the essence of this garden is contemplative. It should feel as though one were walking on a path to a rustic retreat in the mountains.
This is a fascinating deconstruction of a tea house. It’s all glass, whereas tea houses of the past were dark, enclosed spaces where you could hardly see. Light and shadow were paramount aspects. But here – all is revealed.
I would love to have tea in this space. Moving through the Roji one is certainly transformed.
This ‘glass tea house mondrian’ by Japanese artist Hiroshi Sugimoto unites wood, glass and water as a pavilion, holding the traditional Japanese tea ceremony within its transparent wall. Read more about this tea house inspired by Venetian Glass.
I heard that gardeners spend 30 billion dollars a year on gardening stuff. That dollar amount is so huge I had to double check it on Google. It’s accurate.
What are we all spending money on? For me it’s perennial and annuals every spring. I’m making a woodland garden and searching for wonderful Lady Slippers, Maidenhair Ferns and Japanese Peonies. But what are other people spending their money on?
Yesterday I went to the annual Trade Secrets fundraising event nearby in Connecticut which features sales of rare plants and garden antiques. It was crowded with people who had turned out on a beautiful Saturday to buy… garden stuff!
Here’s what caught my eye:
First I made a bee line for Hillside Nursery which sells rare and delicate woodland plants. They have an amazing selection (more later).
Then I went to my favorite vendor Campo de Fiore. I can’t believe what they do with pots and plants in them. I had to restrain myself from getting a potted Begonia – I’m not having luck with potted plants, so I just admired what they had.
As you can see, I spent a long time here, but restrained myself. This fish terracotta adornment for the garden was about $1000.00. Yikes.
Then I strolled around.
I saw some antique garden furniture, but mostly I was looking for woodland perennial treasures. My garden is fairly restrained. Gnomes, fish, topiary and big stuff just don’t suit my garden or me – but I’m happy to fantasize.
But there was more and even more. I started to get overwhelmed.
And more piles of pots
and piles of other gardening things
Finally I got away and on my way home made it to oneof my favorite places for trees, shrubs and super perenials – Old Farm Nurseries
Geesh – look what they’ve got here!
So maybe this is some of what we are all buying that comes to 30 billion a year. A bit over the top for me. Yet I did come home with some delicate sweet wooland plants that I hope will flourish and prosper. Stay tuned.