The elevated planting bed houses bamboo that will grow to provide beautiful cover for the front of the home. A dark wood entry is a beautiful warm-tone contrast to the white exterior walls. A spacious gravel driveway allows for easy maneuvering while plant life adds life and shade to the yard.
The French Country home encloses a gravel and limestone courtyard on three sides, creating a stunning entry statement. The courtyard is flanked flanked by lavender, citrus and flower beds, evoking French Provencal palette.
Wanting the home to really speak to its surroundings, the David Landscape Design team layered the side yard with gravel walkways, garden beds and hedges. In turn, this outdoor space feels just as natural as the rest of the property.
Raised kitchen garden planters made the sloped front yard into a pretty and functional space. Redwood steps and gravel patches ease access between the beds. And the whole lovely scene can also be enjoyed from the shade of the porch.
To give these homeowners a place to eat outside, designers added an dining area with a grid of concrete pavers based on the dimensions of the back of the house, creating planting beds in the negative space. Designers also added low, concrete walls to frame the seating area, as well as darker gravel to give contrast to the concrete, breaking up the monochromatic expanse.
Also known as oxalis, this is a versatile weed that grows in sun or shade, moist or dry soil. It’s a clover look-alike, with heart shape leaves and yellow flowers. Blooms fade to form upright seed pods that explode when ripe, flinging seeds away from the mother plant. It also roots from stem pieces. It’s happy to grow in lawns, planting beds, gravel drives or vegetable garden paths. Oxalis is a common weed in nursery pots, so be sure to check before adding plants to your landscape. The best way to beat it in the lawn is to mow high and fertilize to grow a healthy, thick lawn. In planting beds, carefully hand-pull or spray with herbicide.
A leaf rake comes in handy for moving leaves, pine cones, fallen fruit and other tree-related items. Look for an ergonomic design that makes the task an easy extension of natural body movements. Choose a wide head with springy tines to make quick work of cleaning large areas. For raking leaves from around shrubs, select a rake with a small head and shorter handle. Use a lawn rake with thin tines to gather grass clippings or clean up the lawn after winter. A bow rake is handy for soil prep in vegetable gardens and new beds, as well as raking gravel areas. A small hand rake earns its keep if you have planting beds beneath trees. Its widely spaced tines let you remove leaves without damaging plants.
Primroses (Primulas) bloom in early spring or late winter. Their sweet flowers last for a few weeks indoors, and after they fade, most gardeners toss them in the compost bin. The Victorians loved primroses, growing the plants in greenhouses and conservatories. They've never really gone out of favor, although it’s not easy to coax them back into bloom. For best results, keep their soil slightly moist, grow them in a cool room, and add humidity to the air by sitting them atop some gravel in a tray filled with a little water. To stimulate more blooms, move your primrose outside when the weather is reliably warm. Bring it back indoors before frost, let it go dormant for a month or two and cross your fingers--or just buy new plants to enjoy. ‘Sweet 16’ is a large-flowered variety that blooms in white and shades of pink.