Count on pansies for living color when temperatures tumble. First developed in England in 1812, pansies still reign as the cool weather color champion. New introductions include Cool Wave Spreading pansies (shown), which spreads 18 to 24 inches in planting beds. For a can’t-miss color show, fill beds with pansies in single colors, or buy what’s known as a “formula mix,” a custom color blend created by plant breeders to open in eye-pleasing shades. In this bed, the lower pansies feature a formula mix sold as Cool Wave Berries ‘N Creme Mixture spreading pansy.
Open through October 7, the Pinewood Forest Idea Home sponsored by Atlanta magazine is nestled in a community of design-forward homes situated close to the motion picture studio Pinewood Studios, half an hour from Atlanta. Focused on eco-friendly construction and a blend of old and new that mixes European home styles, Pinewood Forest is a 234-acre New Urbanism community that will eventually include 600 single family homes. The Atlanta area is already home to countless Hollywood film shoots and locally-shot TV shows (including Ozark, Stranger Things, Atlanta and The Walking Dead) and its rumored that at least one TV star is already calling Pinewood Forest home.
Star magnolia bursts into bloom in early spring, when the first daffodils are just starting to show color. ‘Centennial Blush’ star magnolia (Magnolia stellata) opens pale pink flowers rich with fragrance. Blossoms unfurl before leaves, staging a stunning show. Star magnolias flower best in full sun but tolerate part shade (they actually benefit from shade during the hottest part of the day in warmest zones). Feed plants in spring using a slow release shrub and tree fertilizer with sulfur and/or iron to help green the leaves. This star magnolia grows 12 to 18 feet tall and 10 to 15 feet wide. It’s hardy in Zones 4-9, which means it can welcome spring from Minneapolis, to Mobile, to Medford, Oregon.
As seen on HGTV's hit show Love It or List It, Hilary's design for this kitchen opens up the space and makes it feel larger than the original floor plan. She adds storage to this space by using a kitchen island in the middle of the room. The neutral colors on the cabinets and windows are accented by a pop of color on the far wall. That color also helps to separate the eat-in area from the main part of the kitchen.
For a family home in Houston, the designers of Laura U Interior Design created a comfortable seating area just off the kitchen. The team used color and accessories to create a cohesive look throughout the wide open area. “While the majority of the color palette is neutral, we weave a lively turquoise through each space: pillows and an area rug in the family, bar stool frames in the kitchen, and a show-stopping chandelier in the breakfast space,” they explain. “The entire space is further unified through the window treatments which are a combination of Hunter Douglas Silhouette shades and custom drapery with a turquoise band on the leading edge. A cheerful yellow and just a dash of orange set off the color scheme while touches of gold and a natural wood (teak root table and driftwood at the island) add eclectic charm.”
Summer long color is yours when you add ‘Amethyst Pearl’ phlox (Phlox carolina) to your garden. A butterfly favorite, ‘Amethyst Pearl’ opens pale lavender-pink blooms starting in early summer. The show continues until early fall, with blossoms beckoning butterflies, bees and other pollinator insects. If you like gathering garden bouquets, grow this phlox—its flowers look great in a vase. Note that while this beauty looks like old-fashioned garden phlox, it's actually a different species. Be sure to get Phlox carolina if you want a phlox for damp soil. Plants grow 18 inches tall and wide. Hardy in Zones 3-8.
David Austin English Rose 'Olivia Rose Austin' combines beauty, fragrance and excellent repeat bloom with breakthrough health and disease-resistance. Named for the grand-daughter of rose hybridizer David C. H. Austin, the soft pink rose is considered one of the best roses the Austin team has introduced to date. It produces masses of blooms over an exceptionally long bloom season that starts three full weeks ahead of other English Roses and continues till frost. The soft pink flowers have an Old Rose formation that opens to a lovely cupped rosette. The medium-strong fragrance has distinctly fruity tints. The dark green foliage shows off the flowers beautifully.
Black-eyed susan vine (Thunbergia alata) takes on a new hue with Lemon A-Peel. The flowers on this variety unfurl in a clear lemon yellow hue like living sunshine. Easy-growing black-eyed susan vine covers a trellis with non-stop blooms all summer long. It adapts well to growing in pots on a tepee trellis. Give this vine full sun, except in the Deep South, where afternoon shade is welcome. Butterflies and other pollinator insects visit blooms, adding to the color show. Plants grow 5 to 8 feet tall by 18 to 24 inches wide. Annual vine, hardy in Zones 10-11. Why we love it: This vine opens non-stop flowers—and it never needs deadheading.
Red maple (Acer rubrum) is beloved for its red flowers that blanket the tree in spring, opening before leaves appear. Summer leaf color is a steady green. Autumn triggers a color show with varying shades of red, from brilliant to deep burgundy. ‘Autumn Spire’ red maple is an upright, narrow accent tree that embodies the traditional beauty of red maple in a size that fits any yard. Trees grow 50 feet tall and 20 to 25 feet wide. They’re drought tolerant once established and also withstand flooding. Developed by the University of Minnesota, this maple holds its own where winter thermometer readings linger below zero. Expect trees to live 80 to 100 years. Hardy in Zones 3-6.