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Sourcebook for Cultivated Living

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    In a recent discussion with San Francisco-based landscape architect Scott Lewis, he told us that the biggest shift in pool design, as he has seen it, is tinting plaster to a darker shade of a blue (rather than the blinding turquoise of midcentury pools). The effect, Lewis says, is a more natural palette—more restful—and creates a reflective surface for the sky.

    As it turns out, architects from Alvar Aalto to Mies van der Rohe, Le Corbusier, and Vincent van Duysen also have their own take on the backyard pool. Here are our 20 favorite modernist pool designs, just in time for the 90-degree days of summer.

    Ludwig Mies van der Rohe Barcelona Pavilion Pool | Gardenista

    Above: A prototype for minimalist pools is seen in Ludwig Mies van der Rohe's Barcelona Pavillion, a house built in 1929 that stood for only a year. Photograph via Mies van der Rohe Society.

    Private House in Kensington, London | Gardenista

    Above: A Victorian house in Kensington, London renovated with an indoor pool by David Chipperfield Architects.

    Mirage Pool in Athens, Greece by Kois Associated Architects | Gardenista

    Above: On a Greek island on the northern side of the Cyclades, a single-level house is an ongoing build project by Kois Associated Architects. The expanse of the rooftop is a dark blue infinity pool that merges visually with the landscape and pushes the home beneath it into the hillside. Photograph via Dezeen.

    Vincent van Duysen PI Residence Pool in Kortrijk, Belgium | Gardenista

    Above: A minimalist lap pool at the PI Residence in Kortrijk, Belgium designed by Vincent van Duysen.

    Infinity Pool by Corona y P. Amaral Arquitectos | Gardenista

    Above: A serene infinity pool at the edge a house at Jardin del Sol on the Canary Islands in Spain, built by Corona y P. Amaral Arquitectos. Photograph via Arch Daily.

    Vincent van Duysen HH Residence Pool in Wilrijk, Belgium | Gardenista

    Above: An indoor-outdoor lap pool in a renovated 1920s villa in Antwerp, Belgium by architect Vincent van Duysen.

    Peter Zumthor Thermal Baths Vals | Gardenista

    Above: An illuminated pool in the shadow of the Graubünden, Switzerland mountains at Vals Thermal Spa designed by architect Peter Zumpthor.

    Alvar Aalto Villa Mairea Pool | Gardenista

    Above: At Villa Mairea, a house in Noormarkku, Finland designed by Alvar Aalto in 1940 includes a simple pool in the iconic Aalto shape. Photograph via Alvar Aalto Museo.

    Biofiltered Public Pool in Switzerland by Herzog & de Meuron Architects | Gardenista

    Above: A chlorine-free, bio-filtered pool in Riehen, Switzerland by architects Herzog & de Meuron is modeled after a natural bathing lake.

    Ole Lundberg Pool Photographed by Alan Owings | Gardenista

    Above: A circular swimming pool built from a former livestock watering tank at architect Olle Lundberg's redwood cabin in Cazadero, California.

    Philip Johnson Glass House Pool Connecticut | Gardenista

    Above: An elevated concrete pathway leads to a bright, circular pool at Philip Johnson's Glass House on 49 acres in New Canaan, Connecticut.

    Pool at Melbourne Tower in Australia | Gardenista

    Above: An indoor pool in the 741-foot-tall Melbourne Tower by Elenberg Fraser.

    Pool by Hans Verstuyft Architecten | Gardenista

    Above: A penthouse in Antwerp, Belgium designed by Hans Verstuyft Architecten.

    Swimming Pool by Duggan Morris Architects | Gardenista

    Above: A pool at the Alfriston School in Buckinghamshire, England was designed by Duggan Morris Architects to reduce sound reverberation with a calculated angular wooden pavilion overhead. Photograph via Dezeen.

    Le Corbusier Unite d'Habitation Pool in Marseilles, France | Gardenista

    Above: A wading pool on the roof of the modernist Cité radieuse building in Marseilles, France designed as part of the Unité d'habitation buildings by Le Corbusier and painter Nadir Afonso in 1952. Photograph by Heather Shimmin.

    Pool Designed by Herbst Architects in New Zealand | Gardenista

    Above: A small pool in New Zealand by Herbst Architects; see more in Hardscaping 101: Gabion Walls.

    Solo House Pool by Pezo Von Ellrichshausen | Gardenista

    Above: A Brutalist-style swimming pool by Pezo von Ellrichshausen Architects, designed as part of French developer Christian Bourdais' Solo Houses Project in Matarraña, Spain. Photograph by Christobal Palma via Yatzer.

    Infinity Pool by Edmund Gollander Design | Gardenista

    Above: A simple infinity pool with a coping edge by Edmund Hollander Design on Long Island's East End.

    Modernist Pool at The Row in Melrose, Los Angeles by Montalba Architects | Gardenista

    Above: A swimming pool in the glass courtyard at The Row store in Los Angeles, a space once owned by Neil Diamond and redesigned by Montalba Architects. Photograph by Donato Sardella.

    Vincent van Duysen Pool in Kortrijk, Belgium | Gardenista

    Above: Double pools meld into the landscape at a house in Kortrijk, Belgium; architecture by Vincent van Duysen.

    For further aquatic inspiration, see our posts:

    Vote in the Gardenista Considered Design Awards 2015

    More Stories from Gardenista


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    The Pilgrims were not the only foreign settlers to come over on the Mayflower. The first exotic plants also ventured to the New World with these and other early European visitors. Today reports put the number of non-native flora in North America in the thousands—according to one source fully one-third of total plants, and up to 80 percent of plants in our gardens. Though many integrated quite nicely into our landscape, other non-natives are considered "invasive," which means their aggressive growing habits choke out indigenous plants, posing a threat to native eco-systems.

    Gardeners nationwide are joining a growing movement to stamp out these foreign invaders, but even the most conscientious may be surprised to learn that many of their favorites are in fact invasive plants. To help, we've compiled a list of the top 10 offenders and the best substitutes:

    1. Invasive: Butterfly Bush

    butterfly bush by Daniel Vucsko via Flickr, Gardenista

    Above: Butterfly bush (Buddleia davidii) photograph by Daniel Vucsko via Flickr.

    Butterflies are not only pretty, these pollinators are also great for the environment. Unfortunately butterfly bush (Buddleia davidii) is not. A native from Asia, this plant is listed as an invasive in more than 20 states including much of the West Coast and the area east of the Mississippi. Though mature butterflies love this shrub's sweet nectar, the butterfly bush provides no support for butterfly and moth caterpillars. More important, it threatens native species that do.

    Native Alternative: California Lilac

    California lilac, gardenista

    Above: California Lilac by Josh Jackson via Flickr.

    Gardeners who want to support the entire butterfly life cycle and still enjoy brilliant flower clusters should consider native alternatives such as California lilac (Ceanothus), and meadowsweet (Spiraea spp). Wild hydrangea (aborescens), viburnum, and azaleas are also good substitutes. The team at Beautiful Wildlife Garden put together a comprehensive list of native, butterfly-friendly, alternatives by state and region. The New England Wildflower Society also has a list of more than a dozen native substitutes.

    2. Invasive: Japanese Honeysuckle

    Japanese_Honeysuckle_(Lonicera_japonica)

    Above: Japanese honeysuckle (Lonicera Japonica) via Wikimedia Commons.

    An aggressive, vine, Japanese honeysuckle spreads quickly over trees and along the understory, where it chokes out native seedlings.

    Native Alternative: Trumpet Honeysuckle

    trumpet-honeysuckle-large by Janet Allen

    Above: Photograph of Trumpet honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens) by Janet Allen of Our Habit Garden, an excellent native plant resource for New York State.

    People are usually attracted to Japanese honeysuckle not for the brilliance of its blooms, but for their strong fragrance. Those who want a similarly sweetly scented vine should consider natives such as Trumpet honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens), Carolina jasmine (Gelsemium sempervirens), or leatherflower (Clematis viorna).

    3. Invasive: Purple Loosestrife

    PurpleLoosestrife via Natural Land Trust

    Above: Purple loosestrife photogrpah via Natural Lands Trust, "a non-profit land conservation organization dedicated to protecting the forests, fields, streams, and wetlands that are essential to the sustainability of life in eastern Pennsylvania and southern New Jersey."

    Swathes of Purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria) in a marsh may look dramatic and pretty, but this aquatic invader is choking wetlands in nearly every state in America.

    Native Alternative: Gayfeather

    gayfeather, liartis by d. Barronoss via Flickr, Gardenista

    Above: Gayfeather by D. Barronoss via Flickr.

    Gardeners seeking a similar, long-lasting, purple bloom should opt for Gayfeather (Liatris spicata), Grass-Leaved Blazing Star (Liatris pilosa), or purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea.)

    4. Invasive: Scotch Broom

    scotch-broom-shrub

    Above: USDA photo of Scotch Broom via Controlling Scotch Broom by Gardening Know How.

    Scotch broom (along with Spanish and French broom) is invasive in much of this country's two coasts. According to Washington State's Invasive Species Council, this European import and member of the pea family "forms dense, impenetrable stands" in open areas where it not only threatens native eco-systems, but also "slows reforestation and creates fire hazards." People visiting areas with Scotch broom should wash their cars and boots to prevent spreading.

    Native Alternative: Mormon Tea

    Mormon Tea by R J Cox, Gardenista

    Above: Mormon Tea by R. J. Cox via Flickr.

    Native to the Southwest, Mormon Tea (Ephedra) is, like Scotch broom, ideal for dry, sunny climates with poor or sandy soil (read: deserts and shores). It also produces similarly bright yellow flowers with pollen used for medicinal purposes.

    5. Invasive: Rugosa Rose

    rose rugosa by Claudia Daggett, Gardenista

    Above: Rosa rugosa by Claudia Daggett via Flickr.

    The is a reason Rosa rugosa is so popular with coastal gardeners. It actually thrives in challenging growing conditions! Unfortunately, it does too well. This leafy shrub shades other native dune plants, mosses, and lichens upon which native fauna depend. Not only a problem in the US, this aggressive rose also threatens coastal habitats in Europe.

    Native Alternative: Virginia Rose

    Rosa virginiana by Stephen Horvath, Gardenista

    Above: Virginia rose by Stephen Horvath via Flickr.

    A native to eastern North America, Rosa virginiana also thrives in sandy, salty environments. Its blooms are much like those of Rosa rugosa and, in autumn, Virginia or common wild rose produces similar brilliant orange rose hips to provide food for local fauna. Unlike Rosa rugosa, the leaves of Virginia rose also support many beneficial insects and pollinators.

    Another good native alternative, Carolina Rose sports similarly fragrant blooms and beneficial rose hips.

    6. Invasive: Japanese and Chinese Wisteria

    picket-wisteria-Hazlegrove-0545-gardenista

    Above: For more about wisteria, see Wisteria: A Dangerous Beauty (Are You Tempted?).

    Prized for its romantic, draping blooms, invasive wisteria was introduced by horticultural enthusiasts. Today escapees from the garden are invading American forests in "19 States, from Massachusetts to Illinois, South to Texas and also in Hawaii," according to the Plant Conservation Alliance. In these regions, it threatens native woodlands, entwining and choking mature trees and shading saplings in the understory.

    Native Alternative: American or Kentucky Wisteria

    wisteria

    Above: Above: Photograph by Nicole Franzen for Gardenista. For more of this Brooklyn garden, see The Magicians: An English Professor and a Novelist Conjure a Garden.

    American Wisteria has only slightly smaller blooms, and is much less aggressive than its Asian counterparts.

    7. Invasive: English Ivy

    English Ivy by Michael W. May via Flickr, Gardenista

    Above: English Ivy by Michael W. May via Flickr.

    With apologies to Harvard and the other "Ivies," your signature plant is invasive in this country. When this vigorous vine escapes the confines of academia, it can entwine and choke trees and spread like a blanket over the forest understory. In urban areas it also harbors other unsavories such as rats and carpenter ants.

    Native Alternative: Crossvine

    700_crossvine-plant-on-ledge

    Above: Crossvine by Susan E. Adams via Flickr. For more friendly climbers, see Alternatives to Ivy, Vertical Growers.

    Ivy substitutes can be broken down in terms of what you want your ivy to do. Seeking a fast climber? Try crossvine, or native honeysuckle. Need a quick ground cover? Try Allegheny spurge (Pachysandra procumbens) or Green-and-gold (Chrysogonum virginianum). Evergreen? Shade plant? For many more suggestions, see The Virginia Native Plant Society's comprehensive paper on Native Alernatives to English Ivy.

    8. Invasive: Japanese Barberry

    Japanese barberry by Kate Ter Haar, Gardenista

    Above: Japanese barberry by Kate Ter Haar via Flickr.

    According to Eat the Invaders' historic timeline, in 1875 The Arnold Arboretum near Boston received the first Japanese barberry plant, which was supposed to replace European barberry (a Colonial food source), which was discovered to harbor wheat rust. Today this invasive threatens native plants in much of the eastern and midwestern US.

    Native Alternative: Beautyberry

    800px-Callicarpa_americana_2 by Eric Hunt  

    Above: Beautyberry by Eric Hunt via Wikimedia Commons.

    If brilliant fall berries are what you're looking for, try Beautyberry (Callicarpa americana), which sports purple berries that are as rare as they are charming.

    9. Invasive: Japanese Spirea

    Spiraea_japonica_2by Paul Hermans, Gardenista

    Above: Spirea Japonica by Paul Hermans via Wikimedia Commons.

    Common in much of the Northeast, Southeast and Midwest, Japanese spirea or Japanese meadowsweet overshadows native herbs and shrubs. 

    Native Alternative: Douglas Spirea

    DouglasSpirea via Oak Point Nursery, Gardenista

    Above: Spiraea douglasii (Douglas Spirea) photo via Oak Point Nursery.

    Fortunately, if you like the delicate pink blooms, there are many native substitutes with either flat or pointed flower clusters. These include: Ceanothus americanus (New Jersey tea), Leiophyllum buxifolium (sand myrtle), Spiraea douglasii (Douglas spirea), Spiraea spendens (mountain spirea), and Spiraea tomentosa (steeplebush).

    10. Invasive: Burning Bush

    Burning Bush by John Lillis via Flickr, Gardenista

    Above: Photograph by John Lillis via Flickr.

    Birds just love the fruit of burning bush (Euonymus alatus), which means it will spread to wild environments rapidly. Currently, burning bush is considered invasive in most states east of the Mississippi where it threatens native forests, fields and coastal scrublands.

    Native Alternative: Chokecherry

    Chokecherry by Joe Calhoun via Flickr, Gardenista

    Above: Photograph by Joe Calhoun via Flickr.

    If autumn color in the form of scarlet leaves and bird-friendly berries is your goal, try chokecherry (Aronia spp.). Mountain serviceberry (Amelanchier bartramii) also has nice autumnal foliage and fruit.

    Other sources:

    Vote for the Gardenista Considered Design Awards 2015

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    Our judges have selected the finalists, now you choose the winners. Vote for the finalists in each of 12 Considered Design Awards categories, on both Gardenista and Remodelista. You can vote once a day in each category, now through August 15.

    In the Best Amateur-Designed Small Garden category, our five finalists are Nicole Gjeldum, Joni F., Nicola Wilkes, Bill McKinney, and Pete Joseph. 

    Project 1

    Nicola Wilkes | Llantwit Major, UK | Simple Scandi Style Garden

    Design Statement: "We wanted to make the most of our odd, triangular shaped garden. Our aim? Turn the biggest negative of our house into the biggest positive and combine the following: seating, BBQ area, play area for children (not one trampoline or swing in sight), shade, canopy, black, white, and rustic style."

    Chosen by: Gardenista editor in chief Michelle Slatalla, who said: "I love this modern white garden, with its flexible lounge, dining, and work spaces. It can become anything you need today (and then transform itself in a new way tomorrow)."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Scandinavian-style, simple family garden."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Built-in seating area."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Seating area softened with sheepskins that are kept in a basic bin by the back door."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards


    Project 2

    Bill McKinney | Philadelphia, PA | Edible Urban Small Garden

    Design Statement: "I live in the fifth largest city in the US. The neighborhood is part of the second poorest Congressional district in the US. Space is at a premium, and my response is an edible space, so kids can also learn about what they can do with their space: aquaponics, container, chicken, and rooftop gardens."

    Chosen by: Guest judge and event designer David Stark, who said, "This is space use at its finest. I love  that this garden is about function but at the same time, and while probably not intending, it has an industrial look that really complements its setting. A little nature goes a long way in this environment."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | Gardenista 2015 Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Third story and second story aquaponics with a background of the Philadelphia skyline."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Side-of-house aquaponics system. The system also produces 50 pounds of tilapia a year."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Second story aquaponics system with tabasco plants used to make hot sauces."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Rooftop container garden and chicken coop."


    Project 3

    Joni F. | New Suffolk, NY | Teardrop Delight in New Suffolk

    Design Statement: "For 12 years we drove by this house and thought, 'Why doesn't someone love it?' We were able to buy it and sell our beloved house around the corner. With the help of a landscaper we did some serious planting. The front teardrop has evolved over 10 years."

    Chosen by: David Stark, who called the project a "Lovely garden that has a good balance of broad, sweeping strokes as well as smaller, intimate details. The weathered, natural fence works really hard and beautifully offsets the beds from the rest of the landscape." 

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Every week the garden evolves with color and new sights."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Fragrant roses."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Third-floor overview."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Lavender blooming through a locust fence needed to keep horses out."


    Project 4

    Nicole Gjeldum | Naperville, IL | Garden Rooms

    Design Statement: "Our garden is made up of many garden rooms, from our children's garden and small vegetable patch to our rambling paths through our shade gardens. My goal from the start of creating this garden eight years ago has always been about creating an oasis on a basic city plot."

    Chosen by: Michelle Slatalla, who said: "In this garden, you have no way of knowing if you are in the country, the city, or suburbia. And that's its genius—it's its own universe, in nature."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Garden room—a stroll through the side garden room to enter the back garden."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "The sitting garden—a great area of the garden to take in the view."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "The patio garden—this is our sunken patio that is filled with groupings of container plantings."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Dry stream bed—plantings along the dry stream bed."


    Project 5

    Pete Joseph | Leesburg, VA | Greenhouse with Recycled Materials

    Design Statement: "I converted an existing pergola to a greenhouse with windows and doors pulled from a dumpster."

    Chosen by: David Stark, who said, "The structure is adorable and inventive, and I love its scale relationship to the trees and lawn it is nestled in. While the garden itself is clean and simple, the greenhouse did just the right trick of providing a focal point to reinforce its lush green expanse."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Greenhouse built with recycled materials."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Backyard. Greenhouse gets plenty of shade in the summer, direct sun in the winter."

    Amateur Small Garden Finalist | 2015 Gardenista Considered Design Awards

    Above: "Double-paned windows and door on northern exposure."

    Found your favorite? Vote once per day in each of 12 categories across both sites, now through August 15:

    More Stories from Gardenista


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    Popularly associated with midcentury modernist lounging, the butterfly chair began life as a wood-framed folding chair used during the Crimean and Boer wars and was patented by the British in 1877. Fifty or so years later, three Argentine architects—Jorge Ferrari-Hardoy, Antonio Bonet, and Juan Kurchan—replaced the wood with a single length of steel and exhibited the chair at a furniture fair in Buenos Aires. It caught the eye of MoMA's industrial design curator, Edgar Kaufmann Jr., who bought one for the museum and one for his parent's new country house, Fallingwater (designed by their friend Frank Lloyd Wright). Knoll acquired the US production rights in 1947, and about 5 million chairs were sold during the 1950s alone.

    The popularity of the butterfly chair continues apace, and today it is made by a range of manufacturers worldwide, including French company Airborne, which has been producing the chairs since 1951 and has come out with a couple of variations on the theme (it's also faithfully reproduced in the US by Circa50, and is available at Steele Canvas).

    Above: The AA Airborne Chair is made in France and is available for €783 in leather. Bodie & Fou offers the AA Airborne Chair with a black or white canvas cover for $729. Photograph of the Isabel Marant store in LA by Julie Carlson.

    Above: There is something very appealing about canvas paired with white stitching. 

    Above: The Estancia Chair with linen cover from Roost is $565 from Modish Store. CB2 has just begun offering its own version of the Butterfly Chair for $399 in black or brown leather, and $249 in kilim pattern by Aelfie Oudghiri.

    Above: One of the two butterfly chairs bought by Edgar Kaufmann Jr. in 1938. This is in Fallingwater, the other is at the Museum of Modern Art. Photograph by Christopher Little.

    Above: The Hotel Jan José in Austin uses white canvas butterfly chairs outdoors and black leather butterfly chairs indoors. Photograph via Apartment34.com.

    Object Lessons columnist Megan Wilson is the owner of Ancient Industries and curator of the Remodelista 100 presented in the Remodelista book. Watch for her column every Tuesday, and have a look at her past lessons on the Atlas Pepper Mill, IBM Wall Clock, Sheila Maid Clothes Drying Rack, and Hudson's Bay Point Blanket.

    Vote for the Gardenista Considered Design Awards 2015

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    Barebones style: we've stumbled upon this utilitarian yet romantic outdoor kitchen in Puglia, a renovation project of Elia Mangia Design Studio. We've sourced the elements to recreate the look:

    Mediterranean Utilitarian Outdoor Kitchen in Puglia, Gardenista

    Above: The outdoor kitchen is sited in a renovated trullo, a style of stone hut native to the region.

    Outdoor Mediterranean Kitchen in Puglia, Gardenista

    Above: The ingredients are truly simple, but admittedly the white Mediterranean walls add a certain charm. 

    Nexgrill Tabletop Grill, Gardenista

    Above: A tabletop stove is the easiest outdoor cooking solution. A Nexgrill 2-Burner Table Top Gas Grill is $99 at Amazon.

    Black Plastic Utility Tub, Gardenista

    Above: We like the utility tub used as an outdoor sink; a Black Plastic Utility Tub is $18.75 from Midland Hardware.

    Orange Outdoor Extension Cord, Gardenista

    Above: In the right setting, even a plain orange extension cord looks like a design element. A 25-Foot Outdoor Extension Cord is $11.99 on Amazon.

    Bayco Fluorescent Utility Light, Gardenista

    Above: In case the string lights hanging from the olive trees fail to provide enough light, a Bayco 18W Fluorescent Work Light is $19.97 at Walmart.

    Bialetti Stovetop Espresso Maker, Gardenista

    Above: Ubiquitous in Italian kitchens, indoors and out: the Bialetti stovetop espresso maker. A 3-cup Bialetti Moka Express is $26.94 on Amazon.

    Raw wood cutting board ; Gardenista

    Above: Any cutting board will do, but some are nicer than others.  A Raw Wood Board is $39 from West Elm.

    Black Wok with Wood Handles, Gardenista

    Above: A Wood-Handled Wok is $9.38 from KitchenInspire.

    Catch another stellar outdoor kitchen, this one in the Netherlands, in Steal This Look: The Ultimate Outdoor Kitchen.

    Vote for the Gardenista Considered Design Awards 2015

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    When Alison Cayne moved into her townhouse in New York City’s West Village in 2012, she was happy with all the outdoor space she was getting. She loved the broad terrace on the second floor, just outside the master bedroom, and a similar terrace on the fourth floor. And the backyard seemed just great, with its raised platform at the back that "looked like a little stage.”

    But Cayne soon realized the backyard had its drawbacks. The raised area took up a lot of space, making it difficult to entertain big groups—something Cayne, the founder of Haven's Kitchen, a cooking school, café, and event space in Chelsea, does often.

    What's more, her younger son (now 10) found that the slate flagstones underfoot played havoc with his basketball game. A freshly completed overhaul has solved both those problems:

    Photography by Douglas Lyle Thompson, except where noted.

    West Village backyard overview; Gardenista

    Above: The backyard's new look. Two days after the job was done, Cayne had a dinner for 45 in support of the FEED Foundation. The basketball hoop is easily wheeled out of the way for parties; otherwise, it sees a lot of use. That court on the right? Read on.

    Before

      West Village townhouse backyard, Before; Gardenista

    Above: Photographs by Ali Cayne.

    Two seasonal views of the backyard before renovation. The space was fine for Cayne and her five kids, but not suited to larger gatherings—or basketball. 

    Plans for West Village townhouse backyard; Before; Gardenista

    Above: (from left) Contemplating brick choices; the plan drawn up by Twin Stone Restoration, a Brooklyn-based contractor. Photograph by Ali Cayne.

    After

    West Village backyard, second-floor view; Gardenista

    Above: The completed backyard, as seen from the second-floor terrace. The job took only a month; removing excess soil and debris from the back proved to be the biggest challenge.

    Brick in a herringbone pattern provides a smoother surface for basketball. The clay court at right is for playing boules, a French game that Cayne loves. "I usually call it ‘boccie’ because that sounds less pretentious,” she says jokingly, "and more people know the name." There is a difference: The Italian game of boccie is similar to bowling, whereas boules (also called petanque) resembles horseshoes, but is played with heavy metal balls.

    ali-cayne-west-village-garden-1-gardenista

    Above: The back stairs lead down from the townhouse's open kitchen. The ground floor houses a ping-pong table and a pet rabbit, who's allowed to wander the yard when supervised.

    West Village backyard, couch; Gardenista

    Above: A reading corner at the rear. The couches are covered in neutral-colored outdoor fabric; Cayne tosses throws over them when guests are coming.

    West Village backyard, dining table; Gardenista

    Above: In warm weather, Cayne and the kids eat outside whenever they can. The lightweight picnic table and benches are easily moved to wherever they're needed for a meal.

    West Village backyard, dining table; Gardenista

    Above: Flowers on the table came from the backyard's planters. The yard's old fencing was left in place; a new section will soon weather to match it.

      West Village backyard, fountain; Gardenista

    Above: This wall-mounted stone fountain (and the ivy) came with the house. Even without water, Cayne likes it just as it is.

    ali-cayne-west-village-garden-1-gardenista

    Above: An embroidered Indian fabric lends color to a couch. The backyard fire pit is frequently pressed into use for roasting after-dinner s'mores with the kids.

    West Village backyard, wharf light; Gardenista

    Above: Wharf lights along the walls illuminate evening get-togethers.

    ali-cayne-west-village-garden-1-gardenista

    Above: An accomplished griller who has always enjoyed cooking, Cayne fixes family meals on the Weber almost every night. 

      West Village backyard, Echinacea; Gardenista

    Above: A tiny visitor explores a coneflower blossom. Mismatched pots and planters in the backyard also hold black-eyed Susans, mountain laurel, eastern red cedar, and mixed perennial herbs.

    West Village backyard, stairs; Gardenista

    Above: The yellow terra cotta urn at the top of the stairs was a gift from a friend's parents, owners of the garden design center Eye of the Day, in Carpinteria, CA.

      ali-cayne-west-village-garden-1-gardenista

    Above: No perfectionist, Cayne revels in the backyard's “hodge-podgy” look, saying, “I didn’t want it to look prissy.” The peeling paint on the brick wall looks much as it did when the family moved in.

    West Village second-floor terrace; sauna; Gardenista

    Above: On the second-floor terrace outside the master bedroom, potted herbs, shrubs, and flowers flank an outdoor barrel sauna that came in a DIY kit from Northern Lights, a Belgian company with a branch in Winnipeg, Manitoba. 

    ali-cayne-west-village-garden-1-gardenista

    Above: The terrace off the fourth floor, where Cayne's two sons have bedrooms, has a stunning view of the landmark Jefferson Market Library, with its Gothic clock tower. (The building, originally a courthouse, was completed in 1877.) "Vegetables really love growing here," she says, noting that the terrace seems to have its own micro-climate. 

    West Village townhouse, upper terrace; Gardenista

    Above: The sturdy, self-irrigating planters were constructed and installed by Brooklyn Grange, a rooftop farming business. Cayne and her older son made cold frames out of the windows shown here, and used them to start the seeds she ordered from Seeds of Change. The planter in the middle is dedicated to strawberry plants, the one at left is mostly basil and cherry tomatoes. "The kids are proud of the fact that we grow our own food up here," she says. "My girls and I love to graze in the lettuce and arugula patch."

    West Village townhouse, upper terrace; Gardenista

    Above: A protected bed holds kale, parsley, peppers, and fennel. The bamboo trellis for the sunflowers was made with stalks salvaged from the backyard, where bamboo once ran rampant. And if you climb a ladder to see what's on top of the building, you'll find a roof planted with sedum. 

    For more garden renovations in New York City, see A Lush NYC Backyard by Robin Key and A Low Maintenance Brooklyn Backyard by New Eco Landscapes

    Inspired by the Before and Afters? Find more posts here.

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    What I look forward to most about our annual summer excursion to the North Carolina shore isn't swimming in the warm ocean, curling up with a book under the umbrella with my toes in the sand, or attacking a pile of peel-and-eat shrimp. It's the ritual of showering outdoors. "You are showering again, Mom?" is a familiar refrain.  

    Every year I ask the same question: "Why don't I have an outdoor shower at home?" And, every year I return determined to figure that out. But then I don't know where to start. (Plumbing? Drainage? Privacy?) Well, enough. This year I embarked on a mission to find out everything there is to know about installing an outdoor shower. Here's what I learned:

    Oborain Outdoor Shower, Gardenista

    Above: An instant outdoor shower room by Oborain, a Massachusetts company that makes prefabricated outdoor showers, big and small. 

    What's the best location for an outdoor shower?

    Space requirements for outdoor showers aren't as restrictive as I first assumed. Here's what to consider:

    • You need a firm, level surface that can withstand water and foot traffic. Good candidates include decks (even an upper-level deck, if water can drain), lawns, stone patios, stone paths, and gravel driveways. 
    • Think about how you intend use your outdoor shower. To clean dogs and muddy feet? To rinse off after a day at the beach? Or are you lucky enough to live in a warm climate where you might have your daily shower outside? Site the shower for convenience.
    • Privacy is key. I think my upper deck would be a great spot (for convenience, views, and sunlight), but my neighbors might not agree.
    • A sunny area is best, both for the user's benefit and to prevent mold and rot. 
    • Finally, the location must be accessible to plumbing (see below for details). 

    Tom Givone Outdoor Shower, Gardenista

    Above: For easy access, architectural designer and builder Tom Givone mounted an outdoor shower on the facade of a farmhouse in New York. Tour more of this Floating Farmhouse in Upstate New York. Photography via Givone Home.  

    manufactum outdoor shower, gardenista

    Above: A stand-alone hose-powered Manufactum Outdoor Shower (527) has a steel plate at the base that screws into a backyard deck. 

    Rooftop Outdoor Shower by Billie Cohen, Gardenista

    Above: A city dweller? Outdoor showers can be installed on rooftops, balconies, and in small back gardens. Case in point: an Outdoor Bathing Area on a Manhattan Rooftop by New York landscape designer Billie Cohen. Photograph via Billie Cohen.

    What plumbing is necessary for an outdoor shower?

    Outdoor showers can be plumbed with a garden hose or with fixed pipes. Here are three options, from simple to more complex. Be sure to check with your contractor or jurisdiction about permits and gray-water run-off requirements.

    Cold-Water Hose Plumbing: The easiest setup involves running a simple garden hose between an outdoor faucet and an outdoor shower fixture. Yes, this means cold showers only. But that may be all you need if you're using the shower only in hot summer months or to rinse off dogs or sandy feet. 

    Coro Outdoor Shower, Gardenista

    Above: To supply water to this outdoor shower, a garden hose is connected to the base of the Screw Coro Outdoor Shower (£482 from Made in Design).

    Hot and Cold Outdoor Faucets: You can tap into your home's hot-water supply for an outdoor shower. The easiest way is to have a plumber install an outdoor hot-water faucet next to your existing outdoor (and cold water only) garden faucet. Then you can attach two hoses easily and quickly to the outdoor fixture. Make sure to use heavy-duty hoses. For more durability, consider stainless steel washing-machine hoses. installation is a breeze with this option, and is less costly than permanent water lines. It also avoids frozen pipes in the winter, as you can just detach the hoses and store them. 

    Hot Cold Outdoor Water Faucets, Gardenista

    Above: Side-by-side hot and cold outdoor water faucets. Photograph via Cape Cod Outdoor Shower Company.

    Fixed Plumbing Pipes: Hooking up to the permanent water lines in your home is another option. Pipes can be run a short distance up the side of the house to be attached to a shower fixture that's mounted onto the siding. Plumbing also can be installed to supply water to a shower positioned away from the house, via pipes that exit the house and are buried underground. While buried permanent lines are more aesthetically pleasing than hoses, they're susceptible to freezing and cracking in cold climates and must be drained in the winter.

    Do outdoor showers require special drainage?

    Outdoor showers don't generally need complex drainage systems, especially if the shower is installed a distance from the house, or if the pitch of the land directs water away from the structure. Here are some drainage solutions often used with outdoor showers. (Whatever your situation, we recommend consulting with a professional about drainage.) 

    Lasc Studio Outdoor Shower, Gardenista

    Above: A simple outdoor shower at a Swedish Summer House by Lasc Studio drains directly into the ground. Is that a wooden palette as a shower stand? Photograph by Laura Stamer.

    Direct Garden Drainage: The most common, easiest, and eco-friendly way to drain an outdoor shower is to let the gray water seep directly into your garden. Will this work for your shower site? If the ground is reasonably porous, then the answer is yes, as long as the shower isn't used too often and isn't close to your house's foundation. Oborain Showers suggests testing how quickly water will seep into the soil of a potential shower site by dumping a large bucket of water and timing how long it takes to disappear. If the water remains on the surface for five or more minutes, you may want to consider a dry well or French drain.

    French Drain or Dry Well: If your shower is going to be on the facade of your house or nearby, you need to keep water away from the foundation. Know your existing perimeter drainage system to decide how best to integrate an outdoor shower drainage. If you have perimeter French drain pipes, be sure your outdoor shower is positioned to take advantage of the existing drainage system. Alternatively, you can install a simple dry well (like a French drain without the pipe) by digging a deep pit and filling it with gravel to distribute water slowly into the surrounding soil.

    Fixed Drain: Some more elaborate setups use fixed drains that feed into a house's wastewater system.

    Shower Drainage Pans: Similar to the shower pans on indoor showers, drainage pans connected to a hose can collect, direct, and drain water away from the house and into the garden or an existing drain.

    Outdoor Shower Drainage Pan, Gardenista
    Above: Oborain's Outdoor Shower Drainage Pan ($395) is an example of a pan that can be used to direct water to a desired run-off.

    Do outdoor showers need a shower base? 

    Yes, for the comfort and stability of the person taking a shower. The base should be a water-resistant material that is stable to stand on and permeable for drainage. It can be an existing surface, such as decking or a stone patio. Or, if an outdoor shower is installed in a location with a slippery or uncomfortable surface—such as gravel—you can set a small base on top of the surface.

    Outdoor Shower Feldman Architecture, Gardenista

    Above: Slatted teak mats are commonly used as outdoor shower bases. Here, a slatted-wood base sits atop drainage rocks in a project by San Francisco's Feldman Architecture, a member of the Remodelista Design Directory.

    Do outdoor showers need enclosures?

    This is a question of placement and privacy. How much do you want to bare? Enclosures can range from a simple shower curtain to a wooden stall with a hinged door. An enclosure must allow for air circulation so it dries quickly (to prevent mold and rot). Also consider the landscape: Do you have a hedge or row of trees that could screen the shower? 

    Martha Stewart offers an Outdoor Shower Screen Project for freestanding showers.

    Carlos Delgado Architect Outdoor Shower, Gardenista

    Above: A corrugated steel enclosure in a project by Ashland, OR, architect Carlos Delgado. Photograph via Carlos Delgado Architects. 

    Murdock Young Outdoor Shower, Gardenista

    Above: And then there's the storage question. Towel hooks are conveniently located on the outside of this shower in Montauk, NY. For more on this project, see Steal This Look: Outdoor Shower by Murdock Young

    Can I install an outdoor shower myself, or do I need a plumber? 

    This depends on the complexity of the project. If you're trying to keep costs down, you can purchase a simple hose-fed outdoor shower and be good to go. If you want something more permanent and are handy with a wrench, see Sunset's tutorial on How to Make an Outdoor Shower. For complicated set-ups, we recommend hiring a professional. In addition to plumbing, you may need to alter siding, build an enclosure, or add a surface to stand on. If your projects require any or all of these, you might need a contractor rather than a plumber. 

    Several companies, like Manufactum, Tectona, and Coro, offer hose-ready outdoor showers.

    Oborain Outdoor Shower, Gardenista  

    Above: Oborain has a full range of prefabricated outdoor showers that work with hot and cold outdoor faucets. They offer top-of-the-line fixtures and wood enclosures and even Sunbrella shower curtains. The Plover Outdoor Shower (shown) is $5,495.

    For more outdoor shower inspiration, see Bathing en Plein Air: 29 Outdoor Summer Showers. And, for specific resources see: High/Low: Rugged Outdoor Shower Fixtures and Steal This Look: A Charleston Pool Pavilion.

    For more outdoor projects, browse all of our Hardscaping 101 features.

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    Julie and the Remodelista team waded into colorful waters this week, finding new ways to add a dash of red, orange, yellow, or blue (or other Roy G. Biv options) to a room. Paint fan decks in hand, we're joining them:

    Mirror London Marianna Kennedy ; Gardenista

    Above: Christine visits London's Sorceress of Color at Home.

    Color-Carpets-by-Hay-Denmark-TheModernShop-Remodelista

    Above: Margot lays the groundwork for adding new life to a room: 10 Color-Blocked Rugs.

    Paint colors French Ressource ; Gardenista

    Above: Impossibly brilliant paint colors, from 13 Boutique Paint Companies Around the World.

    High Low color blocked shelving ; Gardenista

    Above: Julie shops for color-block shelving and experiences a High/Low dilemma: should she spend $4,700 or $599

    Green paint white brick bedroom ; Gardenista

    Above: What is the paint color of this gorgeous green wall? Alexa reveals all in Steal This Look: Color-Blocked Bedroom.

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    Take a look at a handful of things we loved this week.

    Kelly Lack House Tour in Bernal, San Francisco, CA | Gardenista

    • Above: A mix of house plants in Martha Stewart and One Kings Lane alum Kelly Lack's San Francisco apartment. Photograph by Julia Robbs. 
    • Does summer vacation beckon? Prep houseplants before you leave. 

    Watermelon Sorbet from Rip + Tan | Gardenista

    • Above: Watermelon and lemonade in the form of a refreshing sorbet
    • SF-based apparel company Everlane is collaborating with Edible Schoolyard to bring better cafeteria food to school kids. 

    Anna Joyce Indigo Beach Accessories via Frolic Blog | Gardenista

    • Above: We're admiring an indigo beach blanket made by Anna Joyce. Photograph by Alice Warninger. 
    • Designer Sean Knibb's opens Flowerboy, a cafe-florist-boutique in LA. 

    Instagram and Pinterest Pick of the Week

    Gardenista Instagram Pick of the Week: @srosenborg

    • Above: A white facade in Khania, Greece captured by architect and stylist Stine Rosenborg (@srosenborg). 

    Gardenista Pinterest Pick of the Week: Geraldine Magazine, Botanical Board

    • Above: There's no shortage of bouquet inspiration in Geraldine Magazine's Botanical board. 

    For the latest Gardenista posts, see The New Outdoor Room. And don't miss Remodelista's most recent issue, Global Color

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    Join us for a week of celebrating summer, with striped rugs for the porch, botanical prints for the wall, and garden tips from designer Charlotte Moss:

    Table of Contents: The Height of Summer; Gardenista

    Above: Our cold frames are propped open this month and the edibles are spilling out. For ideas for four-season cold frames, see Hardscaping 101: Cold Frames.

    Monday

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: We visit a cook's garden in upstate New York in this week's Garden Visit.

    Tuesday

    Hamptons All-Weather Rug from Serena & Lily | Gardenista

    Above: Alexa rounds up her favorite striped outdoor rugs in this week's 10 Easy Pieces. Meanwhile, check out her Jute Rug picks.

    Charlotte Moss book ; Gardenista

    Above: Jessica learns some life lessons (and gardening tricks) from designer Charlotte Moss in this week's Required Reading book review.

    Wednesday

    Swedish botanical prints ; Gardenista

    Above: For an instant decor fix, Alexa rounds up her favorite botanical wall prints and posters in this week's Botanical Art post.

    Thursday

    Garden Visit with Los Angeles Jeweler Kathleen Whitaker in Echo Park, Wood Deck with Wood Benches | Gardenista

    Above: Are you thinking of building a wood deck? Before you start, read this week's primer at Hardscaping 101.

    Friday

    Black pool house outbuilding chaises; Gardenista

    Above: An elegant black Belgian pool house is our Outbuilding of the Week.

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    There is something deeply satisfying about eating directly from the garden. The fruit of one’s own labor really does taste sweeter. As my husband, George, and I finish our fifth year of living full-time in our cedar-shingle cottage in upstate New York, the garden we have created together—full of native plants and heirloom vegetables—feeds us in so many ways.

    Photography by George Billard for Gardenista.

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: Our modest half-acre is surrounded by tall pines that rob us of precious sunshine. We began our garden with a couple of raised beds in the back. Those have now quadrupled and spread to the front as well, maximizing our growing area.

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: At this rate, there will soon be no lawn at all. That’s fine with us.

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: Hops nearly cover our little barn out back, which serves as a writing room and guest quarters. Other crops that do well in these beds include sorrel, horseradish, lovage, shiso, amaranth, kale, garlic, scallions, hot peppers, rhubarb, squash, and catnip. Cucumbers climb over the fence, obscuring the clematis that bloomed so profusely in June.

    The tender shoots of hops are a traditional Italian dish; they're delicious in a spring omelette. In fall, we harvest the beautiful flowers for brewer friends who make gluten-free beer for George.

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: Field garlic, transplanted from the wild, and echinacea both find their way into the kitchen. I make an elixir with citrus and the dried flower heads to ward off flu in the winter.

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: George grows potatoes in these wooden barrels (and extra tomatoes and cucumbers, because he can never have enough), building them up with wire cages and straw.

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: These Mexican sour gherkins, a new addition this year, have really taken off. They drop from the stems when ripe, at which point I'll pickle them in a spicy brine.

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: A hard pruning made our black raspberries more prolific this month—and for once, the birds and chipmunks did not make off with every last one. I used the berries as topping for a delicious cornmeal skillet cake. 

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: George grows complementary plants around his tomatoes and tomatillos, using nasturtiums, calendula, and ground cherries to help draw away predatory insects. In turn, I put the peppery nasturtium leaves in salads, make compound butter with the brilliant petals, and pickle the caper-like seed pods.

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: The front beds hold beets, collards, kale, chard, lettuces, and as many herbs as I can fit. Off to the left, you can just make out the two beds devoted to George’s dozen varieties of heirloom tomatoes. And back to the right are our beehives—we got our first honey this year and it had the citrus taste of pine.

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: Though he doesn’t care for beets, George grew these gorgeous cylindrical Foronos for me. I ate them roasted, along with fresh ricotta and a sprinkling of piment d’espelette dried from last year’s harvest.

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: The great diversity of herbs inspires and transforms my cooking. Some of my favorites are epazote, essential for authentic Mexican dishes; delicate chervil; pungent rau ram (Vietnamese coriander); and several kinds of basil for pesto, pistou, flavored oils, and even cocktails.

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: I grow lots of medicinal herbs and many that are delicious in tisanes. From left to right: lavender, lemon verbena, chamomile, parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme. (Elsewhere are dill, wild fennel, tarragon, summer savory, cilantro, and a variety of mints.)

    Laura Silverman upstate NY kitchen garden ; Gardenista

    Above: I am never happier than when I’m walking through the garden in high summer, surrounded by the wonderful fragrance of crushed tomato leaves, wild bergamot, and spicy herbs. Except maybe when I get back into the kitchen with an armful of bounty and time to play. See more of my garden on my blog, Glutton for Life.

    Wondering if the inside of Laura's house is as magical as her garden? It is. See Laura Silverman at Home in Sullivan County, NY on Remodelista. And see some of Laura's favorite garden-to-table recipes for Pickles, Fried Green Tomatoes, and Creamed Greens.

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    There are 13 days left to vote in our third annual Gardenista + Remodelista Considered Design Awards contest. You can vote once per day in each of six Gardenista categories and six Remodelista categories. 

    To kick off the countdown, awards guest judge David Stark—who also happens to be the hottest event designer in NYC and beyond—is partnering with Gardenista to give away a set of his two most recent books: The Art of the Party and David Stark Design. Both are loaded with party-planning strategies, plus imagery from some of the greatest parties of the last decade. The best part? David will sign both books to our winner

    How to Enter:

    1. Vote for your favorites in the Gardenista + Remodelista Considered Design Awards contest. 

    2. Leave a comment on this post sharing something you love about one finalist project in any category. 

    You can vote once per day in each of the 12 contest categories, so you can leave a comment on this post once per day to increase your chances of winning. Keep in mind, you'll need to share something you like about a different finalist project each time.  

    We'll draw the winner at random from the comments below after the last day of voting—Saturday, August 15.

    David-Stark-The-Art-of-the-party ; Gardenista

    Above: In The Art of the Party, David reveals his party planning process, from choosing a theme to keeping the event eco-friendly. For party lighting tips from David, see 11 Ways to Look Younger Instantly (Hint: Light a Candle). The Art of the Party is $27.32 on Amazon. Photos courtesy of The Monacelli Press. 

    David-Stark-Design-Gardenista-Giveaway

    Above: David's parties look like full-scale art installations; David Stark Design profiles 40 of the best; $27.19 at Amazon. 

    Don't wait. Vote today and leave your comment below to enter to win: 

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    After a lavish six-year remodel, an 18th-century Cotswold estate on 70 picturesque acres is for sale for £17 million (vegetable garden included). Contact Savills to make an offer.

    Duntisbourne House, a Georgian country house built in 1760 for a baronet, has survived the 19th-century addition of two Gothic wings, the devastating effects of a fire, and a 1970s subdivision which relieved the estate of much of its acreage. Last sold in 2008, it has since then been overhauled by London-based architects Michaelis Boyd (best known for remodeling Prime Minister David Cameron's eco house in Notting Hill). The remodel to the 11,000-square-foot-main house involved a basement media room and gym, a guest house renovation, and the addition of a modern pool house. 

    Of particular interest to us, landscape designer Tom Stuart-Smith designed gardens to honor the historic stone facades and the sweeping Cotswold views without compromising a modern sensibility:

    Photography via Michaelis Boyd except where noted.

    Duntisbourne House Cotswolds ; Gardenista

    Above: Photograph via Savills.

    Surrounded by pastures, parkland, and woods, Duntisbourne House was originally the country residence of Sir Mark Stuart Pleydell, a baronet who died six years after completion of the building. His grandson, who inherited the estate, in 1806 sold it to King George III's physician, in whose family it remained until the mid 1900s.

    gloucestershire-edible-garden-pool-house-michaelis-boyd-gardenista

    Above: During the most recent remodel, architects Michaelis Boyd designed a new pool house adjacend to an organic walled kitchen garden where vegetables, flowers (including the bright yellow dahlias and sunflowers shown here) are planted with herbs and fruit trees. 

    gloucestershire-edible-garden-pool-house-michaelis-boyd-gardenista

    Above: The vegetable garden's yield includes chard, lettuces, and other leafy greens.

    gloucestershire-edible-garden-pool-house-michaelis-boyd-gardenista

    Above: Constructed of brick and timber, a 753-square-foot pool house has expansive views of the vegetable garden that behind it. 

    gloucestershire-edible-garden-pool-house-michaelis-boyd-gardenista

    Above: Surrounded by a stone terrace, the swimming pool has an outdoor spa bath.

    gloucestershire-edible-garden-pool-house-michaelis-boyd-gardenista

    Above: Inside the pool house are twin showers.

    Duntisbourne House Cotswold Tom Stuart Smith garden ; Gardenista

    Above: Photograph via Savills.

    Terraced gardens to the south of the main house have a walled beehive garden featuring hornbeam topiaries and a cloud hedge of yews.

    gloucestershire-edible-garden-pool-house-michaelis-boyd-gardenista

    Above: The path from the vegetable garden leads to the cobblestone yard in front of The Courtyard, a 19th century stables next to the main house which has been remodeled to serve as guest quarters. 

    gloucestershire-edible-garden-pool-house-michaelis-boyd-gardenista

    Above: For more of the architects' work, see:

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    Like the French mariniere shirt, the striped rug is an outdoor living essential. For adding a graphic note to a neutral patio, here are our 10 favorite striped rugs in weather- and fade-resistant fabrics.

    Dash & Albert Rugs in Catamaran Stripe | Gardenista

    Above: The Catamaran Ivory & Navy Striped Area Rug by Dash and Albert Rugs ranges from $47.72 to $550 (depending on size) at Wayfair.

    Hamptons All-Weather Rug from Serena & Lily | Gardenista

    Above: From Serena & Lily, the Hamptons All-Weather Rug is inspired by the flat-woven dhurrie, in a weather-resistant polyester; prices range from $117 (for 5 by 7 feet) to $695 (for 8 by 10 feet).

    Perennials Bold Stripe Outdoor Rug from Restoration Hardware | Gardenista

    Above: Restoration Hardware's Perennials Bold Stripe Outdoor Rug in fog gray acrylic is resistant to mold and mildew, fading, and weather; from $155 to $2,795 depending on size.

    Chevron Outdoor Rug from Terrain | Gardenista

    Above: The Chevron Outdoor Rug is woven from recycled plastic and coated with UV protectant to prevent fading; $58 for the small size, $70 for the medium, and $148 for the large at Terrain.

    Veranda Outdoor Rug in Lime from One Kings Lane | Gardenista

    Above: The clean-striped Veranda Outdoor Rug in lime and ecru is a low pile rug of hand-hooked polypropylene; from $35 to $495 depending on size at One Kings Lane.

    Scandinavian Plastic Rug Woods Rug | Gardenista

    Above: Nordic Nest's Woods Rug in black is made in Sweden from plastic and polyester; $124 for the 27-by-59-inch size at Scandinavian Design Center.

    Concentric Cabana Stripes Indoor-Outdoor Rug from Garnet Hill | Gardenista

    Above: The Concentric Cabana Stripes Indoor-Outdoor Rug is made from polypropylene braided in concentric rectangular stripes; from $78 to $928 depending on size at Garnet Hill.

    All-Weather Recycled Rug from Restoration Hardware | Gardenista

    Above: The All-Weather Recycled Stripe Outdoor Rug (shown in blue and gray) is made of water-resistant, recycled PVC; from $175.99 to $2,335 (depending on size) at Restoration Hardware.

    Andros Outdoor Rug from One Kings Lane | Gardenista

    Above: The optical Andros Outdoor Rug in navy ranges from $19 for a doormat size to $349 for an area rug at One Kings Lane.

    Tonal Flatweave Rug from Williams-Sonoma | Gardenista

    Above: Made of yarn-dyed cotton, a Tonal Flatweave Rug is rated for indoor-outdoor use and comes in two colors—blue (shown) and natural—and four sizes; at prices ranging from $39 to $499 at Williams-Sonoma. 

    For more flooring fabrics see our posts:

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    Charlotte Moss is not like you or me, unless you happen to have spent the last 25 years crafting three acres of formal gardens to complement your country house. In which case, my respect.

    Moss left Wall Street 30 years ago to pursue a career as an interior decorator. Her ninth book, Charlotte Moss: Garden Inspirations, suggests that banking lost a force of nature in more ways than one. The mammoth tome shares the nooks and crannies of Moss's East Hampton home ostensibly to convey how one's garden can fuel the pursuit of beauty in other parts of life. However, that point is not the ultimate takeaway for this reader. Here's my crib note: Charlotte Moss knows how to live it up, and there's not one among us who wouldn't benefit from taking a few glossy pages from her book.

    Photographs courtesy of Rizzoli.

    Charlotte Moss's East Hampton Spec House and Formal Gardens in Gardenista

    Above: When Moss and her husband, the financier Barry Friedberg, bought a spec house "in the estate section" of the Hamptons, she was delighted that it came with minimal landscaping. (Calm yourself: this is an "after" photo.)

    Working with Lisa Stamm and Dale Booher of the garden and design collaborative The Homestead, Moss mapped out a series of garden rooms anchored by boxwoods—and proceeded to tweak the design as she ran across more desirable models during her travels. Her motto: "[I]f it doesn't please you, then OUT."

    An allée from Charlotte Moss's Garden Inspirations in Gardenista

    Above: Booher says he initially presented Moss with a design featuring five allées; she slashed the number to one. And, Booher admits, she was right.

    Moss does not assume that we all are handing directions to our gardening team before dictating the lunch menu to the chef and checking in on the calligrapher doing the place cards. She does, however, insist that everyone has the ability to create an atmosphere of beauty.

    Single flower arrangements in Charlotte Moss: Garden Inspirations in Gardenista

    Above: It doesn't take flower arrangements worthy of a Dutch master to bring beauty into your home, Moss argues. Single-variety bouquets "can make anyone look like a flower arranging genius."

    Charlotte Moss Garden inspirations ; Gardenista

    Above: The key to successful entertaining, Moss says, is practice. And freshly ironed linens, good food, a gorgeous table, and a happy host. The rest—like a monumental fountain—is entirely optional.

    Charlotte Moss Garden Inspirations book cover ; Gardenista

    Above: Charlotte Moss: Garden Inspirations is $32.72 on Amazon.

    For more Hamptons moments, see:

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    Our dream kitchen garden is practical, prolific, and beautiful. Here are 13 we love—all working gardens, but pretty enough for leisure time, too. 

    Beautiful Edible Kitchen Gardens | Gardenista

    Above: This Berkeley, California garden by Star Apple Edible Gardens has arched metal trellises to support muscat grapes, green beans, and cherry tomatoes above raised beds of field stone.

    Beautiful Edible Kitchen Gardens | Gardenista

    Above: Among this understated Rhode Island garden's occasional flashes of color are bright blue enameled teepees on which tomatoes grow. See more in Garden Visit: At Home in Rhode Island with Painter Georgia Marsh.

    Beautiful Edible Kitchen Gardens | Gardenista

    Above: In this kitchen garden in the Santa Ynez wine country of California, Addison Landscape sited the garden beds just outside the kitchen for convenient dinnertime harvests of tomatoes, lettuce, artichokes, apples, figs, and more. 

    Beautiful Edible Kitchen Gardens | Gardenista

    Above: The Cape Cod garden of architect Sheila Bonnell has everything she needs for a quick dinner salad, including cucumbers, tomatoes, herbs, and lettuce. Grasses line the perimeter to hide the chicken wire fencing. Read more in Architect Visit: A Kitchen Garden on Cape Cod.

    Beautiful Edible Kitchen Gardens | Gardenista

    Above: Remodelista + Gardenista Architect/Designer Directory member Kriste Michelini collaborated with Esther Arnold on the design of her own kitchen garden in Alamo, California. Michelini wanted the planter boxes to be "sculptural," so the garden would be as beautiful in winter as in summer. See the whole project among the Best Edible Garden Finalists in last year's Considered Design Awards contest.

    Edible garden Gardenista

    Above: Photograph via Bukowskis.

    A three-hours' drive north from Stockholm, a farm dating to the 1700s has a sprawling kitchen garden.

    Beautiful Edible Kitchen Gardens | Gardenista

    Above: A young family turned 10 acres of land outside Melboure, Australia into a working farm, producing all the meat, vegetables, and fruit the family requires. Read more about the expanding effort in Garden Visit: A Modern Farmer and Her 10 Acres in Australia.

    Beautiful Edible Kitchen Gardens | Gardenista

    Above: This Southern California garden by Molly Wood Garden Design mixes edibles and perennial flowers for a kitchen garden that's suited for lingering. The project was a Best Edible Garden Finalist in our 2013 contest. 

    Beautiful Edible Kitchen Gardens | Gardenista

    Above: Designer Lauri Kranz of Edible Gardens LA created a modern steel and glass solution for keeping animal pests out of a Hollywood garden while still letting bees and butterflies in. See the whole project in Steal This Look: A Deer-Proof Garden in Hollywood Hills.

    Beautiful Edible Kitchen Gardens | Gardenista

    Above: A drought-tolerant edible landscape by Kranz, spotted on the blog of photographer Brian Ferry.

    Beautiful Edible Kitchen Gardens | Gardenista

    Above: Demonstrating that household food can be grown almost anywhere, Danish designer Line Grüner created the Urban Greenhouse—a compact structure with planter beds, garden storage, and seating, made in Denmark. For more, see Small Space Gardening: A Tiny Greenhouse on Wheels.

    Beautiful Edible Kitchen Gardens | Gardenista

    Above: Blogger April of Wahsega Valley Farm built a bean tunnel using metal mesh and poles from her local hardware store. Learn how she did it in Vegetable Garden Design: DIY Bean Trellis

    Above: Louise Hassen of Sonoma, California transformed a 5-acre former chicken farm into a lush family farm and space for outdoor entertaining. 

    Beautiful Edible Kitchen Gardens | Gardenista

    Above: This Menlo Park, California landscape by Arterra Landscape Architects has figs, apples, tomatoes, peppers, and more in horse troughs, in keeping with the owners' casual vibe.

    Inspired? Start designing an eat-in garden:

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    Perhaps you are tracking in sand, or mud, or dirt this month. All three? Thought so.

    Put a stop to it with a colorful doormat. We've rounded up 10 of our favorites, from woven plastic to rag rugs, to use in all kinds of outdoor spaces:

    Rope doormat stripes ; Gardenista

    Above: From Maine Float Company, a Down East Door Mat made from recycled float ropes (banned from use because they snare dophins) is available in assorted colors, at prices from $79 to $109, depending on size from Nicky Kehoe. 

    Doormat rag rug blue stripe denim ; Gardenista

    Above: For use in a covered porch or mudroom, a True Blue Rag Rug made of blue jeans fabric measures 4 by 6 feet and is $99 from Land of Nod.

    Doormat green plastic Brita Sweden ; Gardenista

    Above: Large enough to anchor a mudroom or a screened porch, a Gittan Rug in Water is made of plastic by Britia Sweden and measures approximately 78 inches long by 60 inches wide; $374 from Scandinavian Design Center. (For more sizes, see Brita.)

    Colorful green blue stripe doormat ; Gardenista

    Above: A pinstriped Jade Green Cotton Rag Rug woven on traditional pit looms and made of virgin cotton and recycled fabric remnants from the garment industry is suitable for use in a covered entryway or mudroom and measures 3 by 2 feet; $24.95 from Crate & Barrel.

    Floormat doormat yellow blue ; Gardenista

    Above: Iclandic-born designer Hlyuner Atlason's handwoven Above Home Floor Mats are made from water-resistant abaca plant fiber from the Philippines. They measure 30 by 18 inches and are $90 apiece from Umbra Shift.

    Doormat blue check plastic ; Gardenista

    Above: From Sweden, Pappelina's Mose Rug is made of woven plastic. It is $251 at Scandinavian Design Center.

    Fire hose vintage floor mat doormat ; Gardenista

    Above: California-based Oxgut uses decommissioned fire hoses from US fire departments to make Black Trim Fire Hose Mats. The black-edged mats also two have other colors (which can be customized) and are $155 for a 2-by-3-foot doormat size.

    For more about the mats, see Doormats Made from Recycled Fire Hoses on Remodelista.

    Doormat colorful stripes Dash and Albert ; Gardenista

    Above: From Dash & Albert, a colorful Cottage Stripe Cotton Rug for a protected entryway is available in five sizes; a 2-by-3-foot doormat size is $33 from Garnet Hill.

    Recycled rubber flip flop rainbow color doormat ; Gardenista

    Above: A Flip Flop Mat is made from scrap foam rubber from sandal factories in the Philippines; it measures 30 by 20 inches and is $35 from Uncommon Goods.

    Doormat Chilewich shag rainbow stripe; Gardenista

    Above: Suitable for indoor-outdoor use, a Shag Skinny Stripe Mat from designer Sandy Chilewich is woven in the US and measures 28 by 18 inches; $50 from Lekker.

    Rainbow doormat ; Gardenista

    Above: A coarse carpet that can stand up to dirt, dust, and snow, a Coconut Velour Doormat from Schär measures approximately 31 inches long by 19 inches wide and is €49 from Manufactum. 

    A doormat or rug is one of the easiest ways to add curb appeal to an entryway. For more of our favorite ideas, see:

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    A running theme among some of our favorite kitchen and home office spaces is botanical illustration: staunchly scientific prints, crumpled vintage charts, and modern artistic renditions.

    When it comes to sourcing similar works, we're often told they are vintage or were found in the depths of a Copenhagen flea market and so forth. Luckily we have the Internet to unearth some favorites across eBay, Etsy, small batch artists, and more. Here are our finds.

    Botanical Print by Superfolk for Makers & Brothers | Gardenista

    Above: From Irish design studio Superfolk, a lino-print of the yellow shrub Gorse native to Ireland is printed with Japanese ink on traditional Japanese washi paper from a traditional factory in Tokushima. The Gorse Print is €78 at Makers & Brothers.

    Royal Horticultural Society Scientific Drawing | Gardenista

    Above: The Royal Horticultural Society offers a host of classical Belgian watercolor botanical prints. The Grande Cantaloupe by Pierre François Ledoulx from 1804 (L) is £45 for a large satin print. The Espèce de Navet Long Excellent de Gout (R), a parsnip painting by Jean Charles Verbrugge in 1820 is also £45 for a large satin print.

    Italian Maple Botanical Print on Etsy | Gardenista

    Above: The Old Prints Cabinet on Etsy sells a selection including the 1849 Italian Maple Tree Print, a Victorian lithograph for $17.

    Swedish Botanical Print from Kitka | Gardenista

    Above: Featured in Design Sleuth: Swedish Botanicals as Decor on Remodelista, prints that run 190 SEK ($22 USD) each from Skolplansch in Sweden.

    Art Four eBay Seller Vintage Botanical Print Garden Herbs | Gardenista

    Above: A vintage Field Herbs Botanical Wall Chart used in 1970 in a German school is $165 through eBay seller Art Four. More Vintage Botanical Charts can be found with a search on eBay.

    Antique Foxglove Botanical Chart on Etsy | Gardenista

    Above: From Berlin, Germany, the Antique Foxglove School Chart is $280 from Vintage School Charts on Etsy.

    Arminho Cactus Opuntia Jamaicensis Poster | Gardenista

    Above: A vintage-style botanical poster from Arminho, the Large Cactus-Opuntia Jamaiensis Chart is a hand painted watercolor for $90. For more, see Nature Conservancy: Vintage-Style Botanical Posters on Remodelista.

    French Botanical Print from High Street Vintage on Etsy | Gardenista

    Above: Another offering by way of Etsy is from High Street Vintage, a seller specializing in botanical prints. The Antique French Botanical "Dent de Lion" Print is $12 for the 8-by-10-inch size.

    Maria Schoettler California Wildflowers Botanical Print | Gardenista

    Above: San Francisco Bay Area artist and Remodelista/Gardenista Market alum Maria Schoettler offers prints of her whimsical illustrations, like the California Wildflowers Print, 16 inches by 20 inches for $32.

    Vintage French School Poster from Hygge Living on Etsy | Gardenista

    Above: A Double-Sided Vintage French School Poster depicts Les Fruits on one side and a closer look at La Graine on the other; $195 from Hygge Living.

    For a look at some hung botanical prints at home see our posts:

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    Mix and match Ikea's new storage pieces to create an open-air root cellar in your kitchen. 

    Coming to Ikea stores this month, a new collection of Skogsta garden-to-table storage crates and kitchen furniture is made of solid acacia (a hardwood so durable it's often used outdoors). Says designer Markus Engman: "We’d like to think of the Skogsta products like really good shoes. If you take care of your shoes, they will look good for many, many years."

    We're particularly enamored of the slatted crates, a perfect way to store fruits and vegetables because the open-sided baskets create good air circulation. The most substantial piece in the new collection is a solid wood freestanding kitchen island built to accommodate the crates. 

    Ikea is rolling out the collection slowing in some markets. Not yet available in the US, the Skogsta collection already is for sale in the UK (see pricing below):

    Ikea Skogsta crate root celler system ; Gardenista

    Above: Skogsta solid wood storage crates are available in three sizes in the UK. A Skogsta Storage Crate measuring 22 long by 11 inches wide and 13 inches high is £11.

    Ikea Skogsta kitchen island ; Gardenista

    Above: Call it a kitchen island or consider it an open air root cellar: the Skogsta Bar Table (as Ikea calls it) is made to fit the storage crates.

    Ikea Skogsta cutting chopping board; Gardenista

    Above: A Skogsta chopping board comes in two sizes and already is available in the UK at prices ranging from £10 to £12 depending on size.

    Ikea Skogsta fruit vegetable crate ; Gardenista

    Above: A low-sided Skogsta storage crate is £7 in the UK.

    Ikea Skogsta tool box planter handle ; Gardenista

    Above: A solid wood Skogsta Box With Handle is useful for toting tools or as a portable planter; currently available in the UK for £11.

    Ikea Skogsta kitchen stool ; Gardenista

    Above: A Skogsta bar stool has a seat height of approximately 27.5 inches and available in Ikea stores in the UK for £20.

    For more of our favorite Ikea design ideas, see:

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  • 08/06/15--06:30: Hardscaping 101: Wood Decks
  • Would you like to add an extra 250 square feet of living space without spending more than, say, $1,882? Read on to learn everything you need to know about wood decks:

    Wood deck raised platform Los Angeles ; Gardenista

    Above: For more of this raised deck (including construction photos), see Outbuilding of the Week: A Bohemian Surf Shack in Topanga Canyon.

    What is the difference between a deck and a patio?

    A patio is built at ground level, on a level surface, and typically is constructed of a "permanent" material such as stone pavers, brick, or poured concrete. A deck floats above the ground, supported by footings, at a height of anywhere from a few inches to many feet and can be built on an existing slope.

    Typically, a patio is considered more of a permanent feature—and is more expensive to build. For instance, a 250-square-foot bluestone patio costs $3,797 to build (including materials) on average, more than twice as much as the $1,882 price tag to build a wood deck of the same size, according to Homewyse.

    Wood deck Harlem NY ; Gardenista

    Above: For more of this NYC deck, see 66 Square Feet (Plus): At Home with Marie Viljoen in Harlem.

    OK, a deck. How do I design a deck?

    Pros know: Start the design process by consulting a landscape architect or designer, who will help you come up with a design based on how you want to use a deck and the physical properties of your land (Does your yard slope? Is the ground marshy? Do you want to build around existing trees without causing them damage?). A professional also will know if you need a permit for a deck and whether local building codes require a railing.

    Attached vs. freestanding: You can build a freestanding deck on your property, but if you plan to use a deck as an extension to everyday living space, consider attaching it to the house for indoor-outdoor flow. Use string and stakes to lay out the design to make sure you like the size and shape.

    Deck in Oslo, Norway from Stylizimo | Gardenista

    Above: A wood deck in Norway; for more, see Steal This Look: A Budget-Conscious Deck in Oslo.

    Can I build my own deck?

    After you have a plan in hand, if you are extremely handy you may want to build your own deck. But keep in mind there is more to building a deck than sawing and nailing lumber planks. In a cold climate, you will need to dig piers below the frost line to support the deck and make sure it doesn't heave in winter as the ground freezes and thaws. If you are not Bob Vila, you probably will be better off (and save money in the long run) by hiring a contractor or master carpenter.

    wood deck built in outdoor sofa ; Gardenista

    Above: The home of entrepreneur Derek Mattison in LA (originally designed by modernist post-war architects Buff & Hensman) was renovated by Pamela Shamshiri of LA-based design firm Commune. For more, see The New Outdoor Living Room: 10 Favorite Built-In Sofas.

    Is wood the best material for a deck?

    Wood is our favorite choice for a deck because it's a natural material that complements the surrounding landscape; left untreated, wood decks will fade to a soft silver color that plays a supporting role to the garden that surrounds it. Other than wood, the best choice for a deck is a composite material—made of a combination of wood and recycled plastic—which has its own pros and cons.

    • Pros: Composites are long-lasting, won't splinter or fade, and have coatings that resist stains.
    • Cons: Engineered products can be painted or stained, so be careful when you pick a color to choose one that will blend well with natural surroundings (and with your house, even if you someday paint the facade a different color).

    Garden Visit with Los Angeles Jeweler Kathleen Whitaker in Echo Park, Wood Deck with Wood Benches | Gardenista

    Above: For more of this wood deck, see Garden Visit: At Home with Jeweler Kathleen Whitaker in LA.

    OK, wood. What kinds of wood are best for a deck?

    You can use either a hardwood (more expensive, lasts longer, needs less maintenance) or a soft wood. Here are the most popular types of wood for a deck:

    • Cedar: A soft wood that will show wear and get dings, cedar is nonetheless a popular wood for decks because it grows in abundance on the West Coast where its plentiful supply keeps down the cost.
    • Douglas fir: Looks beautiful, costs less than ipe or redwood; needs to be treated with preservatives to ward off termites, rot, and mold.
    • Ipe: This hardwood, which looks like teak but costs less, is long-lasting and beautiful (it's knot-free).
    • Pine: A soft wood, pine needs to be treated with preservatives to prevent it from deteriorating quickly (and to keep away wood-eating bugs such as termites). Planks need to cure for several months to prevent warping. 
    • Redwood: A long-lasting hardwood that won't warp or split; has an "orange-y" tinge that will fade to a soft silvery gray if left untreated.

    Wood deck stained green ; Gardenista

    Above: For more of this green-stained deck, see DIY: Studiomama Pallet Chair.

    Should I paint, stain, or seal a deck?

    We like the look of an untreated hardwood deck best because over time it fades to a soft silvery gray that doesn't try to compete with the natural surroundings for your attention. But if you built a deck from a soft wood or just don't like the look of faded redwood, you can apply a sealer, stain, or paint:

    • Sealer: This is a transparent finish that won't change the color of the wood and will protect it against the elements. Re-apply every year.
    • Semi-transparent stain: Will enhance (not change) the wood color and soaks into the grain. Re-apply every two-three years after you notice fading. For more about stains, see Paint & Palette: 8 Colorful Exterior Stains.
    • Opaque stain: This stains, like paint, will change wood color and will protect wood against the elements for up to a decade before you need to re-apply.
    • Paint: For a deck built with soft wood, an exterior paint will provide the best protection against rot, splinters, mildew, or general deterioration. You will need to re-apply every three to five years, depending on wear.

    wood deck walled garden Belgium ; Gardenista

    Above: For more of this deck, see Steal This Look: A Walled Belgian Garden.

    Summary:

    • Deck or patio: If your property is steep or you want to extend living space with a lower-cost solution, a deck is the answer.
    • Design and build: Consult a professional designer or landscape architect for a plan and hire a contractor to build it (unless you are an accomplished carpenter).
    • Wood or composite: We like the natural look of wood, but a high-quality composite material requires less maintenance.
    • Soft or hardwood: Use a hardwood if budget allows; your deck will last longer and the wood will be more beautiful.
    • Paint, stain, or seal: If necessary. But remember that after you do it once, you'll have to re-apply the finish from time to time.

    For more deck ideas, see:

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