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Sourcebook for Cultivated Living

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    With their delicate blossoms and brilliantly colored berries, the twigs of winter deserve applause. Branches look like floral arrangements in the garden (and can also be brought indoors). On a recent visit to the Royal Horticultural Society’s gardens at Wisley in Surrey, our talented photographer Britt Willoughby Dyer captured the twigs of winter at their best: […]

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    Carmella Rayone is the can-do sort who, faced with the high cost of soapstone, comes up with a convincing DIY look-alike for her family’s kitchen counter: See A Low-Cost Cabin Kitchen for a Family of Five. So we weren’t surprised to hear she also cleared a patch of land and built her own flagstone terrace. But […]

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    Moon calendars are an age-old tool in the garden. Just as the moon exerts a pull on the Earth’s seas and makes tides rise and fall, its phases also can affect growing conditions. As the moon waxes and wanes, lunar gardeners take careful note of its cycle. Depending on the position of the moon, it […]

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  • 01/01/19--01:00: Gardening 101: Quaking Grass
  • Quaking Grass, Briza media Quaking grass usually is not the first plant to come to mind when most gardeners are designing a cutting garden. Instead, they choose the standard, traditional types of plants—the ones with flower petals.While flowers are important for shape, color, and texture, I am here to broaden your planting palette by introducing […]

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    I’ve never met an air plant that I didn’t think was adorable. Tillandsias are the tribbles of houseplants—no matter whether a variety is fuzzy, furry, spiky, rounded, or has long, trailing foliage that looks like a ponytail, it’s irresistible. With nearly 600 known varieties of these low-maintenance houseplants which call tropical climates home, there’s an air […]

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    Dark apartment getting you down? (Just a guess.) Weak winter sunlight+ tropical houseplants = disaster. Or does it? You can change the equation—and your life—with a wall-mounted grow light plant shelf. We are currently admiring one that has “56 LEDs that are calibrated to deliver bright, full-spectrum light boosted with extra blue light to stimulate […]

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    I understand the difference between shade, part-sun, and full-sun plants when it comes to outdoor plants. (Need a refresher? See Houseplants: How to Decode the Info on Plant ID Tags.) But when it comes to indoor plants, I’m completely flummoxed by their light requirements—especially when the plant tag says “low light.” Houseplants are by definition […]

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    File under: essential winter workwear. Women’s overalls—made of heavy-duty fabric, and preferably with a warm insulated lining—are a gardener’s secret weapon in cold weather. Add lots of pockets to a pair of overalls, and you  might even look forward to January’s pruning chores. Here are 10 pairs of women’s overalls for winter gardening: See our […]

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    Miracles do exist, at least in the garden. Allow us to introduce you to a desert plant that can revive itself even after its leaves turn brown and it shrivels up into a sad tumbleweed. Give a resurrection plant (Selaginella lepidophylla) a little water and it will exhibit the amazing ability to come back to […]

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    What’s ahead for interior design in 2019? This week the Remodelista editors identified some of their favorite trends: Zero-Waste Kitchen Pantry Writes Fan: “The next big thing in retail (we hope)? Zero-waste stores equipped with refill stations to minimize single-use plastic containers.” See more at Shopper’s Diary: Kitchen Staples, A Design-Forward Zero-Waste Store. Instant Kitchen Kit […]

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    My clients are often in love with gravel, or at least with the idea of gravel. But as a landscape designer, I have a love-hate relationship with the paving material. The other day I visited a clients’ newly purchased house—and realized that the sellers had put pea gravel between the entry pavers to “dress it […]

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    Here’s what we’re taking note of, this first weekend of 2019: How could Berlin possibly not be the greenest city in Europe, with all those parks? Have you recycled your Christmas tree yet? Welcome to the Year of the Dahlia. New Year’s resolution: breed your own hellebores. What’s flowering in Vancouver this month. Looking back: […]

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    Big impact, small budget—this week we’ll round up our favorite ways to almost no money to make an amazing garden: More stories to watch for this week: 10 ways to save money on a new patio The best plant you’ve never heard of: moor grass 10 Easy Pieces: Budget Garage Shelving In case you missed […]

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    An outdoor patio can change your outlook on life. Picture yourself sprawled in a comfortable chair, a glass of lemonade on a side table, a book. The sun is warm. Close your eyes: that tweeting sound you hear is coming from birds in your garden. If the only obstacle that stands between you and this […]

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    The life expectancy of most of your houseplants is shorter than you probably want to contemplate. But an olive tree? The oldest one on record, growing on the Greek island of Crete, is thought to be at least 2,000 years old. An olive tree will easily outlive you if you take good care of it. […]

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  • 01/07/19--23:00: Gardening 101: Moor Grass
  • Moor Grass, Sesleria: “Piet Oudolf’s Favorite” As a garden designer, I was not always enamored with ornamental grasses. I thought every grass would need a harsh crew cut at the end of the season and feared my gardens would be left with unsightly knobs.  Then I fell in love with Sesleria. This versatile evergreen grass, […]

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    Your garage should be as clean and organized as anywhere in the house, but let’s face it: no one wants to shell out serious cash for garage furniture. Enter the good-looking, budget-friendly shelves on the market, most of which are of the industrial variety. Here are our 10 favorites that keep things simple and attractive […]

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    Fiddle-leaf fig trees are the “it” houseplant that refuses to go away. More than five years after our first post about the trend, #fiddleleaffig is still dominating social media (with 125,272 snapshots on Instagram as of yesterday). By now you may think you know everything there is to know about this finicky tropical rainforest plant—which, contrary […]

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    Please don’t call them fire pits. Even if  smokeless fire bowls are essentially gas-powered fire pits, inventor Elena Colombo said, “I don’t think anything sounds better if you use the word ‘pit’ to describe it.” What inspired her to design her first fire bowl, nearly two decades ago? “I wanted to make a beach fire,” […]

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    If you want vegetable seedlings that are easy to grow, never go to the nursery just to browse. You may end up falling into the trap of buying whatever strikes your fancy—which is likely fine when you’re clothes-shopping, probably not a big deal when you’re grocery-shopping, but most definitely a disaster when you’re plant-shopping while ignorant. […]

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