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Sourcebook for Cultivated Living

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    Hang in there, Boston. Help is coming. We're celebrating the onset of spring this week with tiny potting tables, a pretty-in-pink palette for city balconies, and garden ideas to steal from Martha Stewart. Join us:

    Table of Contents: Spring Awakening ; Gardenista

    Above: Black and white anemones are Erin's favorite. See what she did with them in Splurge for Spring: Black and White Anemones.

    Monday 

    small wood zinc tabletop potting bench table ; Gardenista

    Above: If you're strapped for space, this week's installment of our Gardenista 100 guide to the best of 2015 offers a Small Space Gardening solution: mini potting tables perfect for a balcony or tiny garden.

    Tuesday

    martha-stewart-vegetable-garden-gardenista

    Above:  In a recent interview with a beauty blog, Martha Stewart confided she's more focused on gardening than skincare: "Gardening season is just about to start, so I’ve been ordering all of my plants and seeds and getting ready to plant three gardens." In this week's Garden Ideas to Steal, we round up Martha's top 10 tips for a spring garden.

    Wednesday

    michelle-slatalla-pegboard-potting-shed-gardenista

    Above: Michelle has a just-big-enough potting shed—it's 18 inches deep. We'll show you how to borrow similar space from a garage (and kit it out) in this week's Steal This Look.

    Thursday

    Bluestone paver metal edging gravel pathway lawn ; Gardenista

    Above: Patio pavers. Everything you need to know about materials to jump start a spring project is the topic of this week's Hardscaping 101.

    Friday

    dogwood-garden-brooklyn-heights-catherie-fitzsimons-gardenista.

    Above: A pale pink palette for springtime: in this week's Curb Appeal post, we explore 11 ways to use dogwood trees in a city garden.

    Sign up for Gardenista Daily newsletter

    Julie and the Remodelista editors will be dropping in on Creatives at Home all week—and we've also rounded up some of our favorite Work Studios to visit.

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    Of all the old rectories and vicarages in the Cotswolds, the one with the garden by Dan Pearson is the standout. There is still scope for proper tea on the lawn, but Pearson has achieved a more relaxed formality by mixing new structures of local stone with soft-hued plants that perform over a long season.

    Photography by Nicola Browne and Dan Pearson Studio.

    Dan Pearson Old Rectory, Gardenista

    Above: The old rectory's one-acre garden is near the heart of the village. The honey-colored house is anchored to the garden through its hardscaping and formal design elements including platforms of boxwood.

    Dan Pearson works on private and public spaces around the world, notably a forest in Japan which aims to be sustainable for the next 1,000 years. He has also been chosen to design the plantings for a new garden bridge spanning the River Thames in London.

    Dan Pearson Old Rectory, Gardenista

    Above: Panels of wildflower meadow divide up the lawn, requiring skilled maintenance by the two gardeners who work here part-time. As a designer, Pearson's relationship with clients involves some hand-holding, and the process of establishing a meadow can be particularly nerve-wracking for all parties. A perennial meadow takes at least a couple of years to settle in and for a suitable mowing regime to be established. Included here: Ox-eye daisy and pale purple Greater Knapweed.

    Dan Pearson Old Rectory, Gardenista

    Above: "I use a small planting palette," says Dan Pearson, referring to the different sections of the garden. "It's pared right down so you get part of the picture." This part, surrounding the main lawn, includes the mauve seed heads of Calamagrostis x acutifolia 'Karl Foerster' and violet shades of Veronicastrum virginicum 'Lavendelturm.' In the foreground: fuzzy gray and purple Lambs Ears (Stachys byzantina) with magenta Lychnis coronaria. Plantings of hot colors are in walled areas of the garden.

    Dan Pearson Old Rectory, Gardenista

    Above: Dry stone walls use material that is both new and reclaimed from the local quarry. Surrounding a simple canal flanked by sawn stone paving, the walls are broken up with narrow slits for glimpses of the garden beyond. Hardscaping construction was carried out by the building stars of the Chelsea Flower Show, Swatton Landscape.

    Dan Pearson Old Rectory, Gardenista

    Above: The property is bordered on one side by the River Windrush. Water features three times in this garden: as a reflecting pool (Above), a low-key swimming pool on the lawn, and the canal.

    Dan Pearson Old Rectory, Gardenista

    Above: Dan Pearson describes his approach as "relaxed and naturalistic." Here, alpine strawberries spread around stepping stones, accompanied by white astrantia and clouds of umbels.

    Dan Pearson Old Rectory, Gardenista

    Above: Roses round the door of the old rectory, with elements of formality in the slightly shaggy boxwoods.

    For more modern English gardens, see:

    For more from this corner of the world, see Industrial Lighting from the Edge of the Cotswolds on Remodelista.

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    We can't help admiring how Scandinavian gardeners have it all figured out. No matter how small their living space or how short their growing season, they make room for gardening (indoors or out).

    Inspired by tiny Scandi-style potting benches, for this week's installment of our Gardenista 100 guide to the best of 2015, we've rounded up our favorite mini potting tables to tuck into a corner:

    hero-mini-potting-tables-gardenista

     

      Tiny mini potting planting table Scandinavian ; Gardenista

    Above: A 22-inch-wide painted pinewood Planting Table with a water-resistant galvanized metal tabletop is 1795 SEK ($225 US) from Garden Home. For US shoppers, it's also available from All Modern, where the Small Zinc Work Bench is $144.99.

    potting table bench zinc shelves ; Gardenista

    Above: A Larch Wood Gardener's Table has a three-sided steel work surface and a second storage shelf with drainage holes. Measuring 35.5 inches wide and under 18 inches deep, it "will fit easily onto all but the smallest balconies." It's from €359 from Manufactum.

    Tiny potting table dry sink ; Gardenista

    Above: An Oppotafel pine potting table with a galvanized metal dry sink (which can be removed for cleaning) is 22.8 inches wide. Designed by Esschert, it is 89.95€ via Vtwonen. For US gardeners, a white Potting Table is 259.99 from Hayneedle (in gray, it's $168.85).

    tiny potting bench ; Gardenista

    Above: At 21 inches wide and 20 inches deep, a rustproof Aluminum Potting Bench with a front storage bin is tiny enough to tuck into any corner outdoors or in; £66.95 from Two Wests.

    olding-collapsible-mini-potting-bench-table-gardenista

    Above: A weather-resistant Foldaway Grow Plus Potting Bench has a 15-year guarantee and collapses for storage; £59.99 from Shed Store.

     

    small wood zinc tabletop potting bench table ; Gardenista

    Above: A small Potting Bench made of wood has a zinc work surface and a slatted wood storage shelf for drainage; £155 from Garden Relish.

    For more potting shed essentials, see:

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    Remember Martha Stewart's calendar? Every month (until she discontinued it in the magazine in 2003), she kept us in tune with her circadian rhythms of domesticity, reminding us when it was time to "clean clothes dryer vents," "sow lettuce seeds," or "deadhead roses and perennials."

    I miss being nudged by Martha, particularly in the garden where she was forever digging up and transplanting and dividing and clipping and shaping her topiaries. She's still at it, though. In fact, she recently confided in an interview with beauty blog Into the Gloss that she's more focused on her spring garden than on skincare: "Gardening season is just about to start, so I’ve been getting ready to plant three gardens."

    How exactly does Martha kick off the garden season? We consulted her Martha Blog for guidance and found 10 spring gardening ideas to steal:

    Order Seeds

    martha-stewart-vegetable-garden-gardenista

    Above: For unusual varieties of herbs and vegetables, each year Stewart orders seeds from catalogs. "Ryan, my gardener, and I await with pleasure the arrival of new seasonal catalogs, and we collect them all in one place and then start reading and choosing, marking with post-its and red circles, our choices for the upcoming growing season," she says.

    Some of Stewart's favorite catalog sources are Kitazawa Seed Co. (for more than 250 heirloom varieties from Japan), Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds, and Old House Gardens (for rare bulbs and dahlias).

    Keep Herbs Close

    martha-stewart-culinary-herb-kitchen-garden-gardenista

    Above: Plant herbs and other edible plants that you cook with as close to the kitchen as possible "for easy picking," Stewart advises. If you have a little plot of dirt next to a kitchen stoop, amend the soil and grow perennial herbs such as thyme or oregano. If you don't have a nearby plot, plant a windowsill herb garden with a few pots in a sunny spot. For more ideas, see 5 Quick Fixes: Grow Herbs on a Windowsill.

    Save Space, with Espalier

    martha-stewart-espalier-apple-trees-gardenista

    Above: Train trees or large shrubs to grow flat against a fence or wall to save space and add an extra layer of depth to your plantings. If you have an espaliered tree, early spring is a good time to remove suckers (branches that sprout unbidden from the base of the tree or trunk).

    Espalier is an ancient growing technique that remains useful today, particularly in a small garden. "During the Middle Ages, entire villages lived behind protective walls, and to save on precious space, orchards were planted and trained right up against the inner face of the ramparts," says Stewart.  

    Defend Against Deer

    martha-stewart-white-alliums-gardenista

    Above: Protect spring tulips from hungry deer with a deer-resistant perimeter of alliums (ornamental onions). Deer hate the oniony smell of the bulbs and leaves. There are more than 150 different varieties of alliums; many have flowers that are shades of blue or purple and heights vary. For a white, dandelion puff of an allium, consider Graceful Allium (10 bulbs for $9.74 and ships for fall planting) from Breck's.

    Other deer-resistant plants that Stewart recommends include lavender, cleomes, verbena, zinnias, and asparagus ferns, which are "just plain awkward to chew," she notes.

    Expand Your Empire

    Martha Stewart bearded iris clump ; Gardenista

    Above: If left to their own devices, many plants will multiply and spread year after year. Says Stewart, "This clump of lovely purple and white bearded iris gets larger each year."

    Other spring bloomers that will naturalize include daffodils, crocuses, Spanish bluebells (be careful—they can be invasive). Other plants, including irises and peonies, will grow in ever-larger clumps that you can dig up and divide to encourage even more growth.

    Divide and Conquer

    martha-stewart-divide-hosta-gardenista

    Above: Divide plants that have become too crowded or are choking themselves out. With hosta (Shown), the best way to divide an overgrown clump is to dig it up—be sure to dig deep enough to get the root ball—and then slice through the clump cleanly with a knife or very sharp spade.

    "Hosta, with their palette of so many different colors, textures, and sizes have tremendous landscape value and offer great interest to the garden," says Stewart. Her favorite varieties include Hosta 'Fire Island' ("eye-catching chartreuse foliage"), Hosta 'Fragrant Blue' ("remains attractive from spring to frost"), and Hosta 'Sum of All' ("a giant variety with sun tolerant leaves that are slug resistant").

    Take Advantage of Bad Weather

    martha-stewart-power-washing-tools-gardenista

    Above:  If a surprise snow storm or heavy rains prevent you for working in the garden in early spring, spend the day cleaning equipment and tools. "Yesterday was a cold, windy, and rainy day and I asked my farm crew to focus their attention on indoor chores," Stewart says. "Keeping seasonal supplies well maintained and properly stored will always save time in the long run."

    When cleaning tools, wash dirt off shovels, spades, and forks. Sharpen blades on pruners, shears, and trimmers. Oil blades and joints on cutting tools. For step-by-step instructions, see How to Sharpen Pruners and Loppers and How to Keep a Shovel Sharp.

    Make Friends with Ferns

    martha-stewart-tenant-house-ferns-gardenista

    Above: If your garden has a shady spot—and whose doesn't—underplant trees with clumps of ferns. They'll come up early in the spring and spread every year to fill in problem spots.

    For more of our favorite plants for a shade garden, see Design Sleuth: The Ultimate Shade Garden and Steal This Look: Shady Secrets of an Expert Gardener.

    You Can't Have Too Many Lilacs

    martha-stewart-miss-kim-lilacs-gardenista

    Above: Miss Kim Korean lilac standards line a section of Martha Stewart's driveway.

    "Who doesn't love the fragrance of lilacs?" Stewart says. "There are many varieties of lilacs and by planting an assortment, bloom time will be staggered and can last for up to two months."

    Lilacs like a cold winter, full sun, and well-drained soil. For more growing tips, see Lilac Love: A Guide to Spring's Best-Loved Flower.

    martha-stewart-miss-kim-lilac-gardenista

    Above: Lilac 'Miss Kim' is hardy in growing zones 3-7; a shrub in a three-gallon container is $54.95 from Nature Hills.

    If you love the scent of lilacs but live in a warmer climate, there is hope. The oldest low-chill Syringa vulgaris is 'Lavender Lady,' developed in California 30 years ago by hybridizer Walter Lammerts. A Lavender Lady Lilac is $18.95 from Wayside Gardens. For more about 'Lavender Lady' see Hike of the Week: California's Native Plants.

    Use Evergreen Shrubs for Structure

    martha-stewart-boxwood-bedford-farm-gardenista

    Above: Stewart lines her driveway with a hedge of close-pruned boxwood.

    "In winter months when everything else is barren and brown, the evergreen boxwoods add color and structure to the landscape," Stewart says.

    For other evergreen hedges, see Renew with Yew.

    Use Trees as Punctuation

    martha-stewart-red-horse-chestnut-trees-gardenista

    Above: Says Stewart, "I planted several red American horse chestnut trees at the farm and they are in glorious bloom."

    Two horse chestnut trees that flank Stewart's driveway have as much visual presence as a gate.

    martha-stewart-horse-chestnut-tree-closeup-gardenista  

    Above: Hardy in growing zones 5-8, a mature red horse chestnut tree will reach a height of 50 feet.

    For more spring gardening tips, see:

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    If you want to get technical about it, a classic picnic table looks the way it does—with splayed legs and cross braces—because the original was designed to support the weight of attached benches. 

    We like the look but prefer to have the freedom to pull up benches or chairs as needed. In the case of a real picnic, we might sit on the grass (and put the food up on the table to thwart the ants).

    Here are 10 of our favorite picnic style tables:

    Teak Picnic Style outdoor dining table ; Gardenista

    Above: A Blok Outdoor Dining Table is $3,195 from Teak Warehouse.

    Extendable teak picnic style table ; Gardenista

    Above: From Skagarek, a teak Ballare Dining Table comes with two extension leaves and can expand from 77 inches to 117 inches; $3,999 from Curran.

    Piet Hein Eek teak picnic table ; Gardenista

    Above: From Belgian designer Piet Hein Eek, a picnic style Strip Table has a galvanized steel base and a teak tabletop. Available in three sizes, a 71-inch-long table is $4,599 from The Future Perfect.

    Traditional cedar picnic table ; Gardenista

    Above: Available in three sizes, a Traditional Cedar Picnic Table is available lengths of 46 inches (Shown), 58 inches, and 70 inches. All three sizes are available at Amazon, at prices ranging from $999 to $1,339.

    Picnic style outdoor dining table ; Gardenista

    Above: A Jardine Dining Table made of FSC-certified hardwood is available in two sizes, 66 inches and 77 inches (the larger size is expandable). Prices range from $699 to $999 depending on size at West Elm.

    Picnic style dining table - Gardenista

    Above: A 74-inch-long Benchwright Extending Dining Table is made of solid acacia wood and has adjustable levelers to keep it steady on uneven ground; on sale for $1,499 from Pottery Barn.

    Recycled teak picnic style dining table ; Gardenista

    Above: Made from recycled planks sourced from old fishing boats and construction sites, a Teak Cross Dining Table measures 86.5 inches long and is $1,499 AU from The Furniture Shack.

    Teak cross leg trestle picnic dining table ; Gardenista

    Above: A 79-inch-long Rustic X Leg Teak Dining Table is $1,495 (the table also is available in a 94-inch-length for $1,695) from Teak Warehouse.

    picnic style outdoor dining table ; Gardenista

    Above: Made of eucalyptus from Vietnam, a Croft Collection Islay 6-Seater Dining Table is £499 from John Lewis.

    Picnic style cross legged dining table ; Gardenista

    Above: A cross-legged design with thick planks, a teak X Leg Outdoor Dining Table is available in two sizes; a 78 3/4-inch length is available for $2,995 from Design Warehouse.

    For more of our favorite outdoor dining tables, see:

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    The charms of wisteria are almost impossible to resist. Lounging languorously over a fence or pergola, she will beckon to you with her heady perfume. Before you know it, her nodding, pendulous blooms have hypnotized you. Soon you are rushing to the nearest garden center, determined to own her, but be warned. Wisteria has a mind of her own.

    You are not the first to succumb.  Marco Polo was an early conquest.  He brought wisteria seeds out of China in the 13th century. But you would be wise to take the time to get to know this beauty before you commit to her.  Like a Jezebel she will steal your heart and then, after you are weakened and besotted with love, she will set about to dominate your garden and, if possible, your house. Take this caveat to heart: she is fully capable of attempting to murder your other plants.

    Hardscaping 101: Picket Fences | Gardenista

    Above: For more on picket fences, see Hardscaping 101: Picket Fences.

    Her background is actually quite innocent.  Wisteria is a genus of about ten species of woody, deciduous twining vines. Eight are Asian and include Wisteria floribunda, Japanese wisteria and Wisteria senensis, Chinese wisteria.  Wisteria frutescens, the often less fragrant and floriferous American wisteria, is a native vine and often recommended as an alternative to the Asian wisterias which are on the USDA list of invasive plants.

    Wisteria in Bloom in Park Slope Garden by Kim Hoyt Architect, Gardenista

    Above: Wisteria in bloom in a Brooklyn garden by designer Kim Hoyt. For more of this garden, see The Garden Designer Is In: Kim Hoyt in Brooklyn.

    Wisteria owes its ability to twine readily around a support to the fact that it is a member of the Fabaceae or legume family. Along with its gorgeous flowers, wisteria produces large seed pods. In the early 1800s, collectors imported wisteria seed from China and Japan to the US and Britain. However, plants grown from the seed produced disappointing flowers.  When plant collectors later brought home cuttings made from layering or grafting, the plant thrived and bloomed abundantly like its predecessors in Asia.

    Brooklyn stoop wisteria ; Gardenista

    Above: Wisteria trained on a stoop's railing in Brooklyn. For more, see 9 Ways to Create Curb Appeal with a Flowering Vine.

    If you have plenty of sun, lots of room and a very sturdy support, wisteria is not a difficult plant to grow. It is hardy to zone 5 and likes good drainage and a slightly alkaline soil.  It thrives in a spot protected from strong winds and needs plenty of water when it is in bloom. Avoid feeding with high-nitrogen fertilizer as legumes fix their own nitrogen and adding more will reduce flowering.

    Wisteria in jar by Amy Merrick ; Gardenista

    Above: Photograph by Amy Merrick. For more, see Glamor in Greenpoint: A Studio Visit with Florist Amy Merrick.

    Plan to enjoy your wisteria for a long time.  Plants in China have been known to live 250 years.  And here in Brooklyn, the wisterias in the Cranford Rose Garden at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden are thought to be about 100 years old.  A glance at their massive, gnarled woody trunks would seem to prove that point.

    Buy yourself a heavy duty pair of pruning shears because, if you do plant wisteria, you will need to become a virtuoso  pruner. 

      felco no. 6 pruners pruning shears

    Above: For heavy duty hand pruners, see 5 Favorites: Pruners. Photograph by Felco SA, via Flickr.

    The dark side of this vine has to do with its amazing vigor and the ability for its tendrils to travel swiftly underground, popping up far away from the main plant, and devilishly wrapping around trees, rose bushes or virtually anything else that is in their path and standing still.

    wisteria train how not to eat a house

    Above: Photograph via Environmental Concept.

    If you are determined to plant wisteria or already own it, you may be interested to know that all those leaves and stems you prune away can be put to good use. Later this week we will show you the simple technique for using wisteria to dye fabric.

    purple wisteria flowers in a metal bowl

    Above: If you are determined to plant wisteria or already own it, you may be interested to know that all those leaves and stems you prune away can be put to good use. See a simple technique for using wisteria to dye fabric at DIY: Make a Natural Dye from Wisteria.

    Wisteria Hollander Design ; Gardenista

    Above: Photograph via Hollander Design. For more of Edmund Hollander's gardens, see Required Reading: The Private Oasis.

    For more about our favorite flowering vines, see:

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    Considered "the most influential garden designer of the past 25 years," Dutch plantsman Piet Oudolf has done for perennial gardening what artist Leonard Koren did for the concept of wabi-sabi: popularized and modernized an under-the-radar movement. Oudolf's approach to planting extends beyond the technical to concepts of composition, time and temporality, repetition, and contrast. His goal is to create "dream landscapes."

    While Oudolf cites designer Mien Ruys as his primary inspiration, it's he who put her "New Perennial Movement" into motion on a global scale. Consider, for instance, New York City's High Line, London's Serpentine Gallery Pavillon, and a large-scale matrix planting project underway in Japan.

    The designer's perspective is so pervasive that the first glance of a lyrical garden has us thinking "Piet" every time. Here we've gathered 10 dreamscapes of soft grasses and four-season garden beds, each with a decidedly Oudolfian attitude.

    Nelson Byrd Woltz Blue Ridge Mountains, Virginia Garden | Gardenista

    Above: Landscape architect firm Nelson Byrd Woltz designed 22 acres in Virginia with native species in mind. One is Pink Muhly Grass, a feathery varietal that creates a pink wash across the horizon when it's in bloom.

    Perennial grasses vineyard landscape inspired by Piet Oudolf ; Gardenista

    Above: A Napa Valley vineyard retreat is complete with surrounding gardens by San Francisco-based Scott Lewis Landscape Architecture. The garden was planted with, as the designer say, "seasonal color and strategic circulation," with narrow wooden pathways reminiscent of Ouldolf's Lurie Garden in Chicago.

    Julie Farris Brooklyn Rooftop Garden, Photograph by Sophia Moreno-Bunge | Gardenista

    Above: Designer Julie Farris' own private garden is a version of New York City's High Line scaled to fit a rooftop in Brooklyn. Photograph by Sophia Moreno-Bunge for Gardenista.

    Tom Stuart-Smith Grassy Meadow Garden | Gardenista

    Above: British landscape designer Tom Stuart-Smith plants grasses in repetition, creating a canvas for perennials and loose hedges. For more of his work, see 9 Garden Ideas to Steal from England's Tom Stuart-Smith.

    perennials grasses andrew-van-egmond-gardenista

    Above: Dutch designer Andrew van Egmond planted a private garden of horizontal lines seen in soft wood hardscaping, ornamental grasses, and flowering herbs.

    Cristiana Ruspa Garden Design for Rocca Civalieri Hotel and Spa | Gardenista

    Above: From Cristiana Ruspa of Giardino Segreto, a garden of delicate Mediterranean ornamentals at Rocca Civalieri Hotel and Spa in northern Italy. For more. see Rehab Diaries: Resurrection of a Medieval Nobleman's Garden.

    Edmund Hollander Landscape Design | Gardenista

    Above: A minimalist garden by Edmund Hollander is a singular approach to borders of perennial grass. For more see our post Required Reading: The Private Oasis.

    Miranda Brooks Cottage Garden in Europe | Gardenista

    Above: A cottage garden of delicate florals designed by Miranda Brooks.

    Andrew van Egmond Garden in Katwijk | Gardenista

    Above: Another work from Andrew van Egmond: A poolside garden in Katwijk on the coast of South Holland is a balance of layered perennials and gray stone pathways.

    Le Jardin Plume in France by Patrick and Sylvie Quibel | Gardenista

    Above: Le Jardin Plume, a converted orchard by owners Patrick and Sylvie Quibel in Normandie, France, features a pool that resembles Oudolf's design for Piet Boon's private residence. Photograph by Alan Pollock-Morris via The Telegraph.

    To get the Oudolf look in your garden:

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    I have a vintage 1920s garage, with an original triple door that folds open like an accordion to welcome a Model T. There's only one problem. After a recent remodel, the house is so big that no Ford—or Fiat, for that matter—can squeeze past the master bedroom to reach the garage.

    Some people might have flagged this as a design flaw before construction got underway. Not me. ("Can I have marble countertops in the kitchen?" I remember asking the architect on the day he unfurled the plans on the kitchen table. "Absolutely," he said. And that was the last question I asked.)

    An empty garage. I immediately grasped the possibilities. For starters, I claimed a tiny, 18-inch-deep sliver for a mini potting shed. It has everything on my storage wish list: a work surface, shelves, hooks to hang all my tools—and a padlock to keep everyone else in the family away from my special garden twine (nothing personal).

    Do you have 18 inches of extra space in your garage? Get your measuring tape and check, because I am telling you this garden shed has changed my life. Here's how to make your own:

    Michelle's tiny garden shed open doors ; Gardenista

    Above: My single-car garage has doors that open wide. I hired a handyman to mount sheets of pegboard and hang shelves. The tabletop is 36 inches off the floor—the standard height of kitchen counters and a comfortable height for me. (You can customize the tabletop's height to yours if you are taller or shorter than me.)

    Michelle garden shed clematis vine ; Gardenista

    Above: Last year I bought a Clematis 'Starry Nights' and planted it in full sun, against the garage. In my Northern California garden, this year it started blooming in early March. A similar large, staked Starry Nights Clematis in a 3.6-gallon container is $74 from Monrovia.

    michelle-slatalla-pegboard-potting-shed-gardenista

    Above: Sheets of pegboard are mounted inside the shed on the back and side walls. I bought hooks in a variety of shapes and sizes to hold tools and accessories.

    Pegboard-and-hooks-gardenista

    Above: Sheets of heavy duty Commercial Grade Tempered Wood Pegboard measure 24 by 48 inches and are a sturdy choice if you are storing heavy tools. Unlike conventional pegboard (which is made of layers of glued cardboard), wood pegboard will not fray or dry out; $42.98 from Amazon. 

    A variety of sizes and shapes of hooks are available, depending on what sorts of tools and accessories you want to hang. For instance (from Top), a 50-Pack Of Pegboard Hooks is $35.07, a 4-Pack Of Metal Double Prong Peg Hooks is $2.26, and a 50-Pack of Angled Peg Hooks is $35.06 from Lowe's.

    Japanese garden pruners ; Gardenista

    Above: Made of hand-forged steel, a pair of Japanese Garden Pruners is $109 from Kaufmann Mercantile.

    Measuring tape ; Gardenista

    Above: A heavy duty 10 Meter Field Tape in a coated steel case is on sale for $19 (marked down from $35) at Guideboat.

    Steel handled garden scissors ; Gardenista

    Above: A pair of steel-handled Scissors from a Chinese scissors and knife company that has been in business since the 1600s is 8 inches long; $12 from Brook Farm General Store.

    tiny-potting-shed-ben-wolff-pots-gardenista

    Above: My White Clay Ben Wolff Pots come from Connecticut potter Wolff's One Of A Kind inventory (an ever-changing selection of discounted and discontinued pots). For similar pots, a collection of Three Flower Pots In White Clay with saucers is $85.

    heirloom scissor snips ; Gardenista

    Above: A small pair of brass and iron Heirloom Scissors is $14 from West Elm.

    michelle-slatalla-pegboard-potting-shed-gardenista

    Above: This is one of my special twines. I have thick twine, thin twine, and twine that's in between. (I use twine a lot—to lash together a bamboo trellis, to tie pea shoots to support hoops, and to train the jasmine vines on the back fence. I cannot spare any. If you think you "need" to borrow my twine to, say, wrap a birthday present, rethink that plan.)

    I am a big fan of Nutscene's Ball O Twine ($8 from Ancient Industries) and of big soft balls of Unbranded Jute Twine (Shown) for $2.33 from Home Depot, and of Waxed Hemp Twine ($6.97 from Consumer Crafts).

    michelle-slatalla-pegboard-potting-shed-gardenista

    Above: I store bags of potting soil and fertilizer (for my roses, plus phosphate for my citrus trees) in lidded metal bins that fit conveniently beneath the work surface.

    Knodd galvanized bin; Gardenista

    Above: An 11-gallon galvanized Knodd Bin With Lid has a slim profile with a diameter of 16.25 inches; $24 from Ikea.

    michelle-slatalla-pegboard-potting-shed-gardenista

    Above: On the shelves I store my nickel Haws Plant Mister ($19.95 from Amazon) and little terra cotta pots for seedlings.

    tiny-potting-shed-michelle's-garage-gardenista

    Above: Half of my shed is reserved for hanging long-handled tools and saws with teeth like Red Riding Hood's wolf (I segregate them so I won't absentmindedly brush up against something sharp when I am potting or transplanting).

    tiny-potting-shed-michelle-garage-driveway-gardenista

    Above: Padlocked against twine thieves, my garage keeps a low profile.

    For more garden shed tools and accessories, see:

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    Pressed violas have an old-fashioned air about them, which is probably why I like them so much. Here's how to make easy DIY pressed flower bookmarks:

    Photography by Erin Boyle.

     

    Above: The same delicacy that makes violas and violets fragile cut flowers makes them a perfect to press and dry.

    Above: When selecting the flowers that you'd like to dry, choose blossoms that are clean and fresh. Resist the temptation to use flowers that are already past their prime because wilted petals will be difficult to flatten neatly. For more suggestions, see Pansies: A Cheap Date.

    Above: I love the look of pressed flowers with leaves still attached. I gently peeled back extra leaves until I had a shape I thought would look nice after it was pressed.

    Above: A flower press is a lovely thing to have—and not so very hard to make on your own—but using an old book to press flowers is just as easy and only takes up as much room as the book you use. Use two sheets of parchment or waxed paper to sandwich flowers between the book's pages.

    Above: Lay flowers face down on one piece of paper keep them from moving as you close the cover. 

    Above: I placed the flowers on a page at the back of my book so there would be plenty of weight above them after it was closed. Then I returned the book to its place on the shelf and waited.

    Above: For thin flowers such as violas or pansies, a week or 10 days is all you really need to wait. 

    Above: Keep in mind that flowers will darken as they dry. The whites of the Coconut Swirl violas became more noticeably yellow. After they're dry, pressed flowers will be brittle. Use extra care when moving them off the parchment paper.

    Above: After your flowers are dried, you can glue them to thank you notes or place cards as an impressive embellishment or use them as delicate bookmarks.

    For more easy springtime DIYs, see:

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    Copenhagen/New York-based Soren Rose may look like a cool, reserved Dane, but he describes himself this way on his Instagram profile: "Designing furniture, interiors, and an AirStream trailer. Live in New York and life is great!". He's recently begun designing outdoor furniture for Restoration Hardware; we especially like his low-slung teak Maldives collection.

    Maldives Soren Rose Collection for Restoration Hardware | Gardenista

    Above: His Maldives collection for Restoration Hardware has a "modern profile and a resort aesthetic."

    Maldives Soren Rose Collection for Restoration Hardware | Gardenista

    Above: The 135-inch-long Maldives Sofa is $4,495.

    Maldives Soren Rose Collection for Restoration Hardware | Gardenista

    Above: The Maldives Ottoman is $1,295.

    Maldives Soren Rose Collection for Restoration Hardware | Gardenista

    Above: The Maldives Chaise is $2,495. 

    Soren Rose | Gardenista

    Above: Soren Rose.

    For more of our favorite outdoor furniture, see:

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    Are you agonizing over which patio pavers to pick? Good. You should. The hardscape material you put underfoot will set the tone for your garden design. It's a big decision. Let us help make it easier.

    Patio pavers fall into two general categories: natural (stone or, in the case of brick, clay) and composite (such as concrete). Within those two broad groups are a zillion choices. Our editors have investigated the pros and cons (and prices) of materials such as  bluestone, limestone, bricks, concrete pavers, and porous pavement surfaces such as concrete grid blocks.

    And if you're not sure you want pavers at all—maybe you're considering a permeable surface such as pea gravel or decomposed granite?—we've got that covered too. Read on to find the right paving material for your patio.  

    Bluestone

    Patio pavers bluestone ; Gardenista

    Above: In a San Francisco city garden, landscape architect Scott Lewis created a spacious feeling with a wedge-shaped patio laid with bluestone in a running bond pattern. For more of this 25-by-40-foot garden, see Scott Lewis Turns a Small SF Backyard into an Urban Oasis.

    Bluestone paver patio ; Gardenista

    Above: Bluestone comes in a variety of colors and textures. Shown above is a herringbone pattern laid with pavers in a full color range with a natural cleft. For more about choosing colors and textures, see Hardscaping 101: Bluestone Pavers.

    barbara-chambers-garden-patio-gardenista

    Above: SF-based architect Barbara Chambers paved a small patio in her Mill Valley garden with the same color and texture of bluestone as the pavers she used on an adjacent path to increase the visual impact of the hardscape. For more of her garden, see Architect Visit: Barbara Chambers at Home in Mill Valley.

    steal this look | slate house | gardenista

    Above: Is bluestone the right material for your patio? We've look at all the pros and cons (and compared prices to other materials) in Hardscaping 101: Bluestone Pavers.

    Limestone

    San Francisco garden Ron Lutsko limestone pavers ; Gardenista

    Above: SF-based Lutsko Associated paved a Pacific Heights garden with limestone meant to be viewed from above. If you're standing on the house's upper-floor terrace, it feels as if you've lifted the roof of a dollhouse to peer into a its miniature backyard. For more, see Pacific Heights Mystery: A Hidden Garden Reveals Its Secrets.

    Limestone pavers patio ; Gardenista

    Above: Limestone is a universal and timeless material. And accordingly expensive. To decide if the dense sedimentary rock is the right hardscaping material for your patio, see Hardscaping 101: Limestone Pavers.

    Bricks

    Patios and pavers Brick ; Gardenista

    Above: For a remodel of a 19th century townhouse garden in Manhattan's Chelsea neighborhood, architect Julian King used recycled bricks and stones found on site to pave the patio and edge garden beds. For more of this garden, see Before & After: A Garden Duplex in a Historic Chelsea Townhouse.

    Historical Bricks for Hardscaping | Remodelista

    Above: Most bricks are composed of clay soil combined with lime and sand. Although red bricks are the most common, bricks come in many colors, including cream, grey, tan, buff, pink, brown, and black. For more options, see Hardscaping 101: Brick Patios.

    Brick patio pavers ; Gardenista

    Above: In a former printing factory in Paris, garden designer Jacques Leseur softened the industrial backdrop with a brick patio. For more, see Steal This Look: An Industrial Chic Parisian Courtyard.

    Paving patterns ; Gardenista  

    Above: When choosing a brick pattern, consider such factors as whether you want a space to look larger (or to minimize its bulk); how much money you have to invest (complex patterns are more labor intensive), and whether a pattern will look too busy against other hardscape elements in your garden. For more guidelines for choosing a brick pattern, see Hardscaping 101: Brick Patios.

    Concrete Pavers

    big-sur-cliffside-garden-foueron-view-concrete-patio--gardenista

    Above: In Big Sur, Marin-based landscape architect Eric Blasen softened the hard edges of a concrete patio with native plantings and evergreen trees. For more of this garden, see Architect Visit: The Medieval Mist and Mystery of Big Sur.

    pre cast concrete pavers ; Gardenista

    Above: Concrete pavers offer instant gratification, whether they're the standard-issue variety from the home improvement store or an architect's custom design, says Janet. They're inexpensive, sturdy, and easy to lay. To find out if concrete pavers are the right material for your patio, explore the pros and cons in Hardscaping 101: Concrete Pavers.

    Open Grids and Porous Pavement

    porous pavement patio thyme terrace ; Gardenista

    Above: When Steven Harris and Lucien Rees Roberts built their precisely detailed weekend retreat on a 50-acre swath of land in upstate New York, they laid a porous terrace and planted it with perennial thyme. For more of the project, see Architect Visit: Steven Harris in Kinderhook on Remodelista.

    patio pavers permeable walkway ; Gardenista

    Above: Asking for holes in pavement may sound as logical as wishing for holes in your head. But, using pervious surfaces is the smart and environmentally friendly thing to do," says Janet. See her top choices for open grid concrete and porous pavements at Hardscaping 101: Eco-Friendly Paving Solutions.

    Decomposed Granite

    decomposed-granite-patio-france-gardenista

    Above: Maybe you'd prefer a permeable patio? We like the satisfying crunch of gravel and decomposed granite underfoot. For ideas, see Low-Cost Luxury: 9 Ways to Use Decomposed Granite in a Landscape.

    Decomposed granites colors sizes ; Gardenista

    Above: Decomposed granite is like gravel, but finer and more stable. For colors, sizes, and prices, see Hardscaping 101: Decomposed Granite.

    Pea Gravel

    ehab-diary-eugene-oregon-garden-sone-wall-pea-gravel-garden-design-bench-stone-edging-gardenista.

    Above: A circular pea gravel patio invites contemplation in Eugene, Oregon. For more of this garden, see Before & After: A Garden Makeover for a Ranch-Style House.

    Hardscaping 101: Pea Gravel | Gardenista

    Above: As gravel goes, it doesn't get any better, says Ellen in Hardscaping 101: Pea Gravel. These rounded fragments of pea-size stone crunch underfoot as satisfyingly as crispy cereal. 

    Looking for inspiration? See more of our favorite patio designs at:

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  • 03/26/15--09:00: DIY: Marble Planters
  • Spotted on Food52: blogger Francesca Stone of Fall for DIY covered metal cans in marble contact paper to make stylish planters. It's no secret we'd cover every surface in marble if we could, so here goes:

    Photography via Food52.

    diy-marble-planter-food52-gardenista

    Above: To make planters for herbs such as basil or to hold succulents, all you need is empty tin cans, Styrofoam cups to make liners inside the planters, glue, a few sheets of marble contact paper, and an X-acto knife. For a full list of materials and instructions, see Food52.

    Nail drainage hole in planter ; Gardenista

    Above: All plants need drainage (especially basil, which will keel over in about a minute) without it. So we'd suggest using a hammer and nail to punch a few holes in the bottom of the can before you cover it with marble contact paper. Photograph via Gina Michele.

    diy-marble-planter-food52-gardenista

    Above: Wrap marble contact paper around a can and then trim it with an X-acto knife.

    diy-marble-planter-food52-gardenista

    Above: For a two-tone look, cover half the metal can with plain white contact paper.

    diy-marble-planter-food52-gardenista

    Above: We're sold.

    For more easy DIY pots and planters, see:

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    When it comes to Airstream trailers, we're like a flock of seagulls: the shinier, the better. Dreaming of your own polished aluminum quarters? Here are 10 classic midcentury examples that have been inventively restored and put to use as hotel rooms, guest houses, home offices, and in a few cases travel vehicles.

    Patrick Dempsey Airstream edible garden ; Gardenista

    Above: Grey's Anatomy star Patrick Dempsey converted an Airstream into extra living space at the edge of his kitchen garden in Malibu. For more, see Before & After: Patrick Dempsey's Malibu Garden, Airstream Included.

    Above: A 1952 model renovated by a yacht interior designer functions as a hotel room at The Hotel Daniel in Vienna.

    Above: One of many restored Airstreams seen on Vintage Seekers via Design Sponge.

    Above: Landscape architect Andreas Stavropoulos transformed a 1959 Airstream trailer into a fully functioning office. Stravropoulos—pictured here—parks the trailer behind a Berkeley, CA, co-op; first seen on Sunset Magazine.

    Above: The accommodations at Atlantic Byron Bay resort in Australia include this fully equipped Airstream imported from America.

    Above: In Albany, California, just north of Berkeley, is Flowerland nursery with a trailer coffee shop.

    Above: Vancouver's Le Marché St. George café and grocery crew often picnic and camp out of their 1969 Airstream Land Yacht.

    Above: A room at Liz Lambert's El Cosmico hotel in Marfa, Texas; photograph by Brian Rose.

    Above: A 1955 Spartan aluminum trailer renovated by interior designer Jane Hallworth in Los Angeles.

    Above: A 1965 Airstream Safari recast by Area 63 Productions and interior designer Caroline Brandes for rent on her property in Big Sur, California.

    Above: Texan firm Baldridge Architects converted the interior of a disused 1970s Airstream trailer into a green room for artists performing at Stubbs Barbecue and Waller Creek Amphitheater in downtown Austin.

    Above: Remodelista Architect/Designer Directory member Christopher C. Deam designed the diminutive Airstream Bambi, an updated version of the classic.

    Above: At Hotel Fabriken Furillen on the Swedish island of Gotland, Wi-Fi-free cabins and Airstream trailers surround the perimeter of the main hotel.

    Ever thought of living in a box? See more of our favorites at:

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    No wonder the dogwood is Miss Popularity. America's favorite flowering tree is both beautiful and compact; it looks comfortable in any city garden.

    Of dogwood's 60 or so species, the most common spring-flowering trees fall into three camps. Cornus florida and Cornus Nuttallii cultivars are native to the East Coast but susceptible to fungus; Cornus kousa varieties from Japan owe their growing popularity to their disease free and drought tolerant natures.

    Here are seven ways to use a flowering dogwood to greatest effect:

    As a Shade Canopy

    dogwood-jenna-lyons-brooklyn-gardenista.

    Above: A dogwood tree arches over a Park Slope townhouse garden formerly owned by J. Crew's Jenna Lyons. Photograph via Marcus Design.

    Dogwood Cornus Cherokee Chief ; Gardenista

    Above: Photograph by Geeg Johnson via Flickr.

    For a true-pink flower tinged with white, consider Cornus florida 'Cherokee Chief' or one of its close relatives. The best known red cultivar, Cherokee Chief was discovered in Tennessee (and has been cultivated for sale since the mid 1950s). Other similar red varieties include Cherokee Brave and Cherokee Sunset.

    As a Punctuation Mark

    Pink dogwood Brooklyn townhouse garden ; Gardenista

    Above: A Cherokee dogwood is underplanted with spring bulbs in a Brooklyn backyard. Photograph by Maggie McGuire.

    A bright pink dogwood tree against a green backdrop is enough to make you think the whole garden is in bloom.

    As a Screen

    dogwood-manhattan-upper-east-side-gardenista

    Above: A Cornus florida in a garden on Manhattan's Upper East Side. Photograph via Kristofer Ong.

    With its diminutive height and spreading branches—most mature trees range from 10 to 30 feet, depending on the cultivar—a dogwood is the right size to provide a privacy screen at the edge of a patio or garden.

    Dogwood Cornus florida ; Gardenista

    Above: Photograph via Garden Coach Pictures.

    Cornus florida cultivars have fat, notched petals. Commonly called Eastern dogwood trees, they bloom in colors that range from white to deep red.

    On a Terrace

    dogwood upper east side terrace ; Gardenista

    Above: A potted dogwood tree on a terrace on East 61st Street; garden designed by Alive Structures. For more, see Design Sleuth: Dogwood on Your Terrace.

    Cornus florida rubra, a pink flowering dogwood, was not meant for a container. To convince it otherwise, start with a small tree—from 3 to 4 feet tall, say—and plant it in a pot that's at least three times as big around as its root ball. "In the beginning, it will need a lot of water," warns garden designer Marni Majorelle, who used one on the terrace shown above.

    Near Power Lines

    White dogwood tree Prospect Heights ; Gardenista

    Above: A white dogwood tree flowers against the facade of a Prospect Heights brownstone in Brooklyn. Photograph by Christopher Eliot via Flickr.

    A dogwood tree's small stature will keep it from growing into (and getting tangled in) power lines. 

    In a Tiny Front Yard

    Dogwoods Brooklyn front yards ; Gardenista

    Above: Photograph by Gmpicket via Flickr.

    Most members of the dogwood family are shrubs, not trees, and even the tallest cultivars are comfortable in a small city garden.

    To Prevent Pink Clashes

    dogwood-garden-brooklyn-heights-catherie-fitzsimons-gardenista.

    Above: A pink magnolia (L), white kousa dogwood, and pink cherry tree flower in garden designer Catherine Fitzsimons' Brooklyn Heights backyard. Photograph via New York Times.

    Dogwood will flower in step with spring fruit trees. If you have two varieties of cherry tree—or a cherry and a crabapple—plant a small white dogwood in the middle to unify the sorbet color scheme.

    Cornus kousa Summer Stars ; Gardenista

    Above: Cornus kousa 'Summer Stars' was discovered growing on Long Island in 1964 and has since become a common cultivar. In addition to being disease resistant and drought tolerant, it produces a blizzard of white blooms in spring. Photograph via Flickr.

    Kousa dogwoods from Japan arrived in the United States in the early 1860s and are distinguished by their sharp, pointed petals.

    For more spring flowering trees, see:

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    How do creatives work at home? Turns out not everyone is sitting around in pajamas at noon, as the Remodelista editors verified this week when they made house calls:

    sevil-peach-great-room-remodelista-London-pink  

    Above: Charles Dickens' illustrator slept here (before the Sevil Peach rethink).

    Erica Tanov Lovebirds fabric ; Gardenista

    Above: Berkeley-based designer Erica Tanov brings springtime indoors with a new collection of Lovebird Florals: "so evocative of spring it practically chirps," says Margo.

    German glass tea kettle ; Gardenista

    Above: "Glass is the magic of frozen light," said German chemist Otto Schott, son of a window maker. Julie discovers Award Winning German Glass for the Kitchen.

    Viking stove range pot filler ; Gardenista

    Above: Is your stove suffering from BTU creep? Janet explains how much heat you really need from a burner in Remodeling 101: Decoding BTUs.

    Wall mounted kraft paper ; Gardenista

    Above: Trend alert—get a roll of wall-mounted kraft paper so you can leave messages for family members. (Texting feels so old-fashioned suddenly.)

    Catch up on everything you missed this week with Remodelista's report on Creatives at Home.

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    This is what we're obsessing over this week: 

    Houseplants via Lonny Mag | Gardenista

    Writer's Retreat | Gardenista

    Jian Outdoor Furniture | Gardenista

    • Above: Indoor/outdoor patio furniture.
    • Add this to your morning smoothie rotation.  

    Instagram and Pinterest Pick of the Week

    Gardenista Instagram Pick of the Week: @vitrifiedstudio

    Above: We're getting an inside look at ceramicists Vitrified Studio (@vitrifiedstudio) in Portland, Oregon. 

    Gardenista Pinterest Pick of the Week: Leah Aaron Masterson

    Above: We're inspired by Leah Aaron Masterson's Outside board, which has nearly 1,000 pins. 

    Did you miss our ode to spring? Catch up here. And head over to Remodelista to visit Creatives at Home.

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    Ditchley Park in Oxfordshire was the epicenter of elegance and fun in the 1930s. Saved from terminal decline by the fabulously wealthy Trees (Ronald and his wife Nancy, before she was known as Nancy Lancaster), it was restored with a historic sensibility combined with American ideas of comfort. Heating and plumbing were quite a draw in themselves: No wonder Winston Churchill chose it as his WWII weekend hideaway.

    Photographs courtesy of The Ditchley Foundation except where noted.

    The Ditchley Foundation copyright: Ditchley Daffs. Gardenista

    Above: Ditchley in March. The Trees' country place was considered safer for Churchill and his entourage when the moon was high, as the drive was hidden by trees. It was noted in their circle that Ditchley was preferable to Churchill's house Chartwell and the official PM residence, Chequers, not only for security reasons.

    Like a Fred Astaire movie from the '30s, life at Ditchley was a fantasy world of opulence: the Great Depression took place elsewhere. Thinkers, talkers and performers were a regular fixture. Churchill must have been feeling overwhelmed when, on being introduced to philosopher Isaiah Berlin, he asked: "Which one of your musical comedies is your favorite?"

    Ditchley Park photo by bradman334. Gardenista

    Above: Ditchley Park may have been built in 1722, but its glory days began from the day the Trees moved in. Remarkably, their taste was as impressive as their funding. Her many admirers said that Nancy had the best taste in the world: she liked to rough things up whereas Ronald was more of a "pure palladian." Photograph by Peter L Edwards via Flickr.

    "I can mix things," Nancy Lancaster told Robert Becker when he was writing Nancy Lancaster: Her Life, Her World, Her Art. "If Ronnie and I had gone into business together I'm sure that we would have made a big success."

    The Ditchley Foundation copyright: Ditchley Parterre. Gardenista

    Above: Nancy always extended her flair from the interior to the exterior. The editor of Country Life introduced her to Geoffrey Jellicoe, one of the most influential landscape designers of the 20th century and he brought with him Russell Page, author of one of its most influential books, The Education of a Gardener.

     Ditchley Park Copyright The Ditchley Foundation. Gardenista

    Above: Italianate formality. The terrace was laid using slabs excavated from the cellar. Double rows of pollarded limes, a Jellicoe speciality, were planted to frame the view from Nancy's bedroom.

    Like the decoration indoors, the arrangement of the garden was not a period piece: it was an idealization of what the 18th century could have been, with 20th century hindsight. Where Capability Brown had swept away formal landscapes, Nancy was very happy to put one in because it looked right. The house had looked disconnected from the park so the Trees and their talented designers created terraces and steps, adding a sunken parterre (now grassed over) with a half-moon swimming pool at the end.

    The Ditchley Foundation copyright: Ditchley Temple 1. Gardenista

    Above: When the Trees arrived in the 1930s the garden was on its knees. They discovered later that there was not only one temple but two, hidden in the undergrowth.

    Ditchley Park, photo by John of Witney on Flickr. Gardenista

    Above: The Great Temple or Rotunda, seen across the hundred acres of pleasure grounds. Ditchley house and village were just a part of the 3,000-acre estate. Photograph by John Hackston via Flickr.

    The Ditchley Foundation copyright: Ditchley Lake. Gardenista

    Above: The house from the lake created by Capability Brown.

    Anglo-American Ronald Tree was a Tory MP, along with the Anglo-American Winston Churchill (who grew up on the estate next door, Blenheim Palace). Nancy Tree's aunt, Nancy Astor was the American-born first woman MP. It is no surprise then that the Ditchley Foundation today is a place of learning and political thought, with a slant on extending Anglo-American relations.

    The Gardens of Ditchley Park are occasionally opened to groups by prior arrangement. See The Ditchley Foundation for information.

    For more Nancy Lancaster see The Walled Garden at Kelmarsh Hall.

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    In a city where space is at a premium, London gardens are veering toward a make-the-most-of-it minimalism. This week we'll visit urban gardens with pared down palettes and clever ideas for making small spaces feel expansive. Join us:

    Table of Contents : Minimal London ; Gardenista

    Above: Plants trained to grow flat make the most of small spaces. English gardeners know all the espalier tricks: braided rosesvine trellises, and mini wall orchards.

    Monday

    london-edible-garden-front-yard-sam-tisdall-gardenista

    Above: We visit a small North London front yard given over to a modern victory garden in this week's Architect Visit.

    Egg Shape Rattan Chair | Gardenista

    Above: In our latest installment of the Gardenista 100 guide to the best furnishings for outdoor living in 2015, we round up our favorite Scandi style rattan lounge furniture.

    Tuesday

    Chris Moss London Garden aerial view ; Gardenista

    Above: Kendra takes us on a tour of modern London's best small spaces in this week's Garden Ideas to Steal post.

    Wednesday

    Faye Toogood London Garden Patio | Gardenista

    Above: In this week's Steal This Look post, Alexa deconstructs designer Faye Toogood's London garden.

    Thursday

    Loll Designs Plastic Outdoor Furniture, Gardenista

    Above: Janet takes outdoor furniture care seriously. She shares her secrets for protecting deck and patio furnishings from the ravages of weather in this week's Hardscaping 101 post.

    Friday

    Garage workshop outbuilding ; Gardenista

    Above: A clever marriage between garage and workshop space is our Outbuilding of the Week.

    See what the Remodelista editors find as they explore minimal London Interiors this week.

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    At the end of a lane of Victorian cottages in North London is No. 24a Dorset Road, a tiny 800-square-foot brick house with an enormous vegetable garden in the front yard. The proportions look perfect to us.

    The owners, who had lived next door for 20 years before asking architect Sam Tisdall to design a smaller house, sold their previous home but kept an attached garage. On its site, Tisdall designed the new house to take advantage of available sunlight and growing space, giving it a brick facade to match the rest of the block's Victorian era homes (which were built for railway workers).

    Photography via Sam Tisdall.

    sam-tisdall-london-facade-front-vegetable-garden-raised-beds-gardenista.

    Above: Recycled brick covers the facade and was used to pave the front path.

    london-edible-garden-front-yard-sam-tisdall-gardenista

    Above: Raised beds built of oak railway ties reference the block's 19th century history as a housing for railway workers.

    london-edible-garden-front-yard-sam-tisdall-gardenista

    Above: Surrounding the vegetable garden is a bed of Breedon gravel, a finely graded natural limestone quarried in Derbyshire.

    london-edible-garden-front-yard-dorset-sam-tisdall-view-through-house-gardenista

    Above: From the front threshold, it is possible to see through the entire house to the small, fenced backyard. To the left of the walkway is a freestanding kitchen.

    london-edible-garden-front-yard-dorset-sam-tisdall-view-through-house-gardenista

    Above: The U-shaped kitchen is flooded with sunlight from French doors that open on to the back garden as well as a side door and window.

    london-edible-garden-front-yard-dorset-sam-tisdall-4-gardenista

    Above: The kitchen and dining area open onto the back garden and a patio with brick pavers laid in the same tapestry pattern as the front path.

    sam-tisdall-dorset-road-facade-gardenista

    Above: Says architect Tisdall, "The terrace was locally listed so we knew that we would be up against reasonably strict planning restrictions, but it soon became apparent that the conservation officer would not accept anything other than an exact replica cottage."

    For more of our favorite small-space edible gardens, see:

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    With summer around the corner, we've rounded up our favorite Scandinavian style woven rattan chairs for the latest installment of our Gardenista 100 guide to the best outdoor furnishings and accessories of 2015.

    Their airy profiles and natural materials make these chairs just as happy indoors as out:

    Retro woven rattan chair from House Doctor ; Gardenista

    Above: From Danish designers House Doctor, a woven rattan Rotan Chair is €298 from Living and Company.

    ikea-gagnet-rattan-chair-gardenista

    Above: From Ikea, a handmade Gagnet Rattan Chair has a steel frame; $59.

    Rattan Lounge chair ; Gardenista

    Above: From designer Bloomingville, a rounded Rattan Chair in a natural color is €329 from Living and Company.

    Bloomingville-Rattan-lounge-chair-gardenista

    Above: Denmark-based designer Bloomingville's woven high backed Natural Rattan Chair is $424 from Amara.

    house-doctor-lounge-gardenista.

    Above: A walnut brown woven rattan Lounge Chair from House Doctor is $299.85 from Mollegaarden.

    ikea-storsele-rattan-chair-gardenista.

    Above: A high back rattan Storsele Chair is $119 from Ikea.

    rattan-lounger-and-ottoman-gardenista

    Above: Made of tightly woven sustainable rattan, a Settle In Lounger and Ottoman are $698 and $198 respectively from Viva Terra.

    Rattan-lounge-chair-maison-objet-gardenista

    Above: A Rattan Armchair from Ib Laursen is $224.85 from Mollegaarden.

    For more of our favorite outdoor furniture, see:

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