It's easy to feel as though you've stumbled into a secret garden when wandering the grounds of this mountain resort in northern Michigan. Streams, rolling lawns and cheery pops of color all create an enchanting environment.
Tame loose hoses without spending a penny on fancy hose reels.
Easy Solution: Wrap garden hoses around an inverted flower pot. A heavier pottery or stone pot works perfectly, and if you have one that’s cracked and otherwise not useful, that’s even better.
Using a kit purchased from a local landscaping company, Stacy Gaynor of Red Door Home transformed an empty area of her pebble patio into a wood-burning fire pit. The kit included cinder blocks and a metal inner ring, and made for quick and easy assembly. Check your local garden stores for a similar design.
Tinted mulch is an easy and inexpensive way to bring visual interest to your yard. Wade likes to use black mulch to set off green foliage and uses brown-tinted mulch in more naturalistic areas. Mulch also brings a crips, tailored edge and helps you define your garden borders.
Easy to grow alliums are perennials, and they’re related to chives, shallots and onions. If deer, voles, rabbits or other animals browse in your garden, you’ll find they usually leave these bulbs alone. Plant alliums in the fall, in well-drained soil, giving them plenty of sun.
No need to walk far to enjoy this relaxing pool. Take a dip in the beautiful pool or enjoy a refreshing beverage on the step up patio area featuring Adirondack chairs and a vibrant red umbrella for a little shade and pop of color. This elegant garden is easy to maintain and allows natural beauty to flow.
The full-service kitchen makes it easy to pull off parties on this Chicago rooftop. It features a sink, refrigerator, commercial grill, ice maker and self-serve beverage center. A TV centered on the wall allows the homeowners and their guests to catch their favorite sports without leaving the roof, says designer Vanessa Slivinski of Chicago Roof Deck and Garden.
Give your garden a splash of long lasting color with ‘Rapido’ campanula. Also known as Carpathian bellflower, this easy growing perennial plays the role of ground cover. The flower show starts in spring and lingers into summer. Hardy in Zones 3-9. Botanical name: Campanula carpatica ‘Rapido Blue’ and ‘Rapido White’
The box shape components of this house make an aesthetically pleasing modern look. The gray exterior is a nice, soft contrast to the brown and green of the yard and surrounding trees. Gray stone walkways and stairs provide easy maneuvering from the doors through the garden areas. Yellow flowers provide some natural color and look great near the neon door.
This driveway and front entry are packed with character and function. A large circle allows for easy movement in and out of the home and compliments the neutral tones of the home exterior. A central water feature and surrounding garden decor heightens the beauty and curb appeal of the entry path.
Hops vine brings beautiful foliage in shades of golden-yellow to the summer garden. Summer Shandy hops (Humulus x ‘Sumner’) is an ornamental variety bred for its good looks (not for making beer). This hops vine isn’t aggressive, as hops tend to be. It’s well-suited to training on a trellis, fence or porch rail in a home garden. Vines grow 5 to 10 feet tall and up to 2 feet wide. Hardy in Zones 5-8. Why we love it: This hops variety is undemanding, easy to grow and adds season-long color to any garden.
Whether you are glamping at a designated campground, your family's estate garden, the beach or your own backyard, make sure to pitch the tent on level ground. Clear sticks and stones away beforehand. With so many options available, finding a pop-up weatherproof tent has never been easier. Choose one that best meets your needs in terms of size and portability.
Getting water to plants is one of the top tasks you’ll tackle. If you grow any container gardens, watering is a daily event in the heat of summer. Invest in a quality hose that’s guaranteed for life, along with some kind of easy-to-use hose storage. Include a hose end watering wand, nozzle with multiple patterns and watering can with a detachable rose (the nozzle part that turns a water stream into a shower). For planting beds and large gardens, choose a sprinkler, or invest in drip irrigation. Last but not least, when buying a hose, pick up a pack of flat washers that fit your hose. Replace washers inside hose ends annually, at the start of every gardening season, to reduce drips and wasted water.
As summer wears on and container gardens grow large, watering can occupy large chunks of time.
Easy Solution: Enhance soil’s ability to retain water by mixing in water crystals. These small crystals blend into soil and absorb water, turning into a jelly-type material that’s packed with water for plant roots to absorb. Follow package directions for application rates by pot size.
My grandmother’s garden lit up late every afternoon and through the night with fragrant four o’clocks (Mirabilis jalopa), which Thomas Jefferson grew and called “the marvel of Peru.” Its big seeds are easy to save, and in the late afternoon hummingbirds gorge on them, followed by giant hovering sphinx moths at night.
Meet a clematis that adds a cool note to any garden with its ice-blue blossoms. ‘Diamond Ball’ clematis unfurls beautiful double blooms up to 5 inches across. It flowers on both new and old stems, making it an easy clematis to prune. Simply cut vines back to 18 inches tall in early spring. Give clematis a trellis or netting to climb in a spot with the head of the plant in sun and the base shaded. Vines grow 5 to 6 feet tall by 2 to 3 feet wide. Hardy in Zones 4-9. Why we love it: Blue is a must-have color in the garden, and this shade of ice-blue is especially unusual—and on an easy-to-grow plant.
Mint is one of the garden’s easiest herbs to propagate. Simply gather a few sprigs of mint, and place into water. Remove any leaves that would fall beneath the water line. Within 10 to 14 days, roots will start to form along submerged stems. Wait to transplant mint cuttings until stems are full of roots.
Rollins' highly aesthetic potager is conveniently located right outside her kitchen door for quick and easy access to her edibles. She grows a variety of heirloom vegetables and fruit and herbs, but is as focused on design here as in every other aspect of her Atlanta garden. "In a busy world, there is something therapeutic about digging in the dirt," says Rollins. And it's a democratic pursuit too. "People can't decorate on their own, but people can garden. It's so accessible."