Thursday, October 29, 2009

Affordable Modern Designs for Outdoor Living

The High Desert Design Council is always posting great looking design ideas which I find so inspiring.  I recently found some great ideas of my own in the last two issues of Garden Design.  I was pleasantly surprised to find that these prices were very affordable, something I don't usually find in this magazine.  These are also items I would consider using myself and recommend to clients. I particularly like the lantern since my husband and I are in love with Danish lighting designs, our favorite being the PH5 by Poul Henningsen.  When we were in Denmark in 2007, we looked into getting a used one, but even a used one was very expensive.  But somehow, most Danes had them in their homes.  Priorities, priorities I guess.

Soji Solar White Modern Lantern
Find it at Sprout Home

The Autumn Leaf Swing by designer Veronica Martinez
Also seen in a bronze.  Find it at Urban Garden Deco Guide

Monday, October 26, 2009

Autumn Splendor in the neighborhood

I just love the colors of fall.  Funny though, I don't really do these colors in any flower beds, I just love this last splash of hot color before winter sets in. It's like Mother Nature knows we need a little love and gives it to us in red, orange and yellow.

These are images I've been enjoying in my neighborhood.  I hope you enjoy them too.

Mountain Ash Tree - can't be beat for color

Some Mountain Ash wait to show their colors, but that means their red berries stand out more.

A young Serviceberry Tree, planted in 2007, another of my favorite trees.

Pin Oak in a front yard.  Imagine the view this people have out their windows!

Columbia Park.

The ubiquitous Burning Bush.

Sidewalk color.

Swedish Aspen.  Last year these were more orange in color.

Quaking Aspen.

Maple Trees.

A stand of Quaking Aspens.

Red Twig Dogwoods.


Crabapple Tree.

Other lovely plants not here but worth mentioning is the Rugosa Rose, incredible fragrance during bloom and if you stop dead-heading at the end of summer, you will have beautiful orange hips on the bush.  The Spirea's and Viburnum's also have good fall color.

Remember that most nurseries are having sales right now and it's still a good time to plant.  Cascade Garden Center on Powers between 3rd and the Parkway is having 50% off (!!!) and The High Desert Tree Farm on the highway between Bend and Redmond is having a sale too.  And finally, Aspen Ridge Tree Farm on Helmholtz just southwest of Redmond always has great prices.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Learning from the Pros: Desert Style Gardens - The Home Depot - Garden Club

My super blogger friend, High Desert Diva, sent me this link.  Very good article and Frank Lloyd Wright has never gone out of style, he was just so way ahead of his time.
I'm currently traveling down the West Coast and trying to enjoy the massive rainstorm of the past two days, but there is a reason I moved to the High Desert, and that was mainly the dampness of Humboldt County.  Let's just hope all this moisture is good for my wrinkles...

Learning from the Pros: Desert Style Gardens - The Home Depot - Garden Club

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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Winter's really coming, what to do?!

It snowed, it froze and now the sun is coming back out.  Can't help but laugh and love the crazy weather we get here in Central Oregon.
Can't really tell if winter is coming early this year or if this was a fluke, but it sure woke me up to all the things I need to do to the garden.  Here are some things to make sure to do real soon (before we freeze again).

  • Mow it short.  This will reduce the chance of your lawn developing "snow mold".
  • Apply a Fall fertilizer
  • Water deeply and less frequently (as usual) but less frequently than normal
  • Change the watering time of your irrigation to water mid-morning instead of 6am, keep those walkways unfrozen.
  • Call your local irrigation company to get on their schedule to have your irrigation system blown out.
        You can always turn your system off if it waters your sidewalks and pathways, they can turn into
        hazards and liability issues if they are icy.  (Funny enough, there is a lawyer's office downtown that
        always forgets to turn off their system once the weather stays below freezing, and the sidewalks
        surrounding their office are full of slick ice.  You'd think they would know better.)

  • Plant spring bulbs.  Remember, Tulips are deer candy, but Daffodils, Crocus, Snowdrop,              Fritillaria, Bluebells, Bearded Iris and Allium are all deer resistant.  They need well draining soil. 
  • Great time to plant trees and shrubs!  Now that all the energy normally directed to flowering and leaves is over, that energy is going to the roots and there is good root development happening.  The plants you put in now will be ready to burst forth come spring.
  • Shop for plants with autumn color.  Swedish Aspen (which don't sucker) have great orange color.
  • Plant hardy mums and those lovely ornamental purple cabbage and put a couple of pumpkins out.
  • Continue to water deeply but less often.  Even though it is cold, it is still dry.  Continue to water     when the ground is not frozen, bring a bucket out with you or hook up your hose.
  • Rake up leaves from fruit trees and any diseased leaves.  There is a cycle of disease that can be broken if you remove the diseased leaves.
  • Mulch your roses.
  • Move your tender plants inside.
  • Trim your perennials a little bit but not all the way.  Leave some plant material to protect the root crown from winter damage.  Do not trim your shrubs now, do this in spring after danger of hard frosts pass.
  • Leave your grasses standing.  Ornamental grasses add interest to the winter garden as well as seed for local wildlife.  Trim these in spring.

(Sorry about the funny formatting, couldn't figure it out and honestly would rather play with my daughter than struggle with the computer...)

Winter Chores:
  • Sharpen and clean your tools, remember to store them in a dry place.
  • Read garden books, catalogs, magazines.
  • Think of how well your garden did this year and start planning changes for next year.

Winter is a great time to plan.  As long as I can see the ground (i.e., it's not covered in feet of snow) I can create a landscape design.  And then, come springtime, you will be ready to go as soon as the ground is workable rather than having to wait until summer (like most of the fools who forget about their landscape until the bulbs start to come up) and you can have the best looking landscape in the neighborhood!

If you might be planning work that requires someone else to install it, remember that most good companies are booked a couple of months in advance once the good weather hits again.  Be ahead of the crowd, know what you want to do and get on the schedule to get it done in spring.

Some lovely winter images to get you all in the mood:

Here is another image that I desperately tried to post here but which is protected, follow this link to some lovely photos of winter gardens: Webshots Winter Garden Photos
I would love to design a landscape like this - let me know of any of you want it too!

Here are some books designed to help us all through this bleak season, but beware, most of the contents of books like this are for warmer climates.

Email me for personal advice on how to get your garden looking good through the winter. and check out my website at