Sweet olive blooms release a heady, sweet fragrance that’s almost haunting. Give plants cool temperatures during winter and a spot near a south, west or east window to encourage flowering. The natural bloom time falls from September to April, so you can count on this charmer for some winter cheer. Plants won’t start flowering until they’re 6 inches tall. Botanical name: Osmanthus fragrans ‘Fudingzhu’
Shiny, leathery leaves feature finger-like lobes on easy-growing ‘Xanadu’ philodendron. This plant is an upright type of philodendron, forming a bushy plant that can grow 2 to 4 feet tall and up to 5 feet wide in the landscape. As a houseplant, it happily grows to fill a 10- to 14-inch pot over time. ‘Xanadu’ is undemanding and gets by with minimal light and water. Give it spot near a bright window, though, and you’ll be rewarded with a bushier plant. It’s sometimes sold as Winterbourn philodendron.
Starting with an apartment-sized, three-seater sofa centered on the left-hand wall, Briana and Buzz arranged the space around it to maximize the flow of their loft's living room. They took focus off of the room's lack of space by grounding the area with an oversized area rug featuring a bold, graphic print. Instead of adding a bulky, horizontal bookcase to the spatially-challenged room, the couple opted for tall, metal book towers they placed by in the window. The vertical arrangement instantly turned their cherished photography books and novels into a sculptural focal point while still keeping the collection neatly organized.
Double blooms adorn this favorite fragrant bloomer. This is a dwarf variety that grows 2 feet tall and up to 4 feet wide. Indoors, raise plants in terra-cotta pots to help prevent root rot. Water only when soil is dry. Bright light near a south, east or western window is ideal. For best flowering, provide a temperature difference of 10 to 15 degrees between day and night. Botanical name: Gardenia jasminoides ‘Crown Jewel’
If you like the tropical vibe of Philodendron selloum but can’t accommodate its large size, look to ‘Super Atom’ philodendron. This ruffle-leaved beauty looks like a miniature selloum, growing only 3 feet tall and wide. It’s a great coffee table plant when it’s young. As it grows, shift it to a corner table or a spot on the floor near a bright window. ‘Super Atom’ is branded as a member of Costa Farms’ Plants of Steel collection, which features tough-as-nails plants perfect for beginners. These plants withstand low light, irregular watering and low humidity—and still look great.
This home is located on a steeply sloping ridge top and is designed to sensitively step down with the land. The steep topography influenced the linear design as it hugs along a natural rock outcropping. The layout is perfectly harmonious to the land and sun, allowing the home to orient its long faces to the north and south while minimizing its east and west exposures.
Tall, north-facing window walls capture cool, even lighting throughout the day, while deep overhangs along the south protect from overexposure from the sun. The main roof sheds to the south, providing maximum solar collection potential. Decks and screened-in porches along the south face also provide areas for outdoor entertaining and a means to capture prevailing breezes that blow up from the canyons below.