The most important elements of backyard landscaping and design

Сoloring structures

Susan Winth of Susan Winth Gardens in New Jersey says people will ask for more color out of their structures which can be achieved by painting fences, arbors, and houses. “Rather than white, brown or gray fences, we’ll see fences painted dark green or dark blue.

“This is a European trend,” she says. “Black houses and fences are huge in Europe. Here in the U.S., people are painting their houses a darker color, like deep blues or navy blue as a foil for the garden. A house painted dark charcoal gray affects what a garden looks like,” she says.

 Jensen Landscapes & Pools

 Mount Kisco, NY Coloring structures in the garden, a trend Susan Winth says hails from Europe, create a vibrant background for setting off plants in the garden. Photo by: Susan Winth, APLD.

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Highlighting subtlety in gardens

“Gardens don’t have to be over the top,” says Jan Jensen, a New York based exteriro designer, author and speaker. “There will be more appreciation for subtle color ranges, or all white, or one color gardens.” Jensen says gardens will be appreciated in the details of a stone wall, or interesting edging, or delicate branching patterns in the landscape.

Here in the U.S., people are painting their houses a darker color, like deep blues or navy blue as a foil for the garden. A house painted dark charcoal gray affects what a garden looks like
Susan

“People get too much carried away by spring color or summer flower palette,” says Jensen, “but they’re beginning to get more in tune to early to mid-fall gardens as well.” Rusty colors of oak leaf hydrangeas in the fall, grasses that flower late season, and the intricate patterns of branching on bare plants and shrubs will be more appreciated, she says.
Designing with houseplants and growing veggies indoors

“Whether it’s a terrarium, a living wall or an indoor planter, people are becoming more curious in treating a plant pot as a small-scale landscape,” says Helen Battersby of Gardenfix in Toronto.

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“Instead of just having a single houseplant in a pot, they’re applying “thriller, spiller, filler” container gardening trends and other design principles to indoor gardens.” Battersby says there have been some great books in the last few years that play on this trend. From Tovah Martin’s The Unexpected Houseplant (Timber Press, 2012) to Rooted in Design (Ten Speed Press, 2015) by Sprout Home. According to Battersby, “You can enjoy your design all winter indoors or even shift it to the patio for an instant garden in summer.”

Battersby also notices new manifestations in vegetable gardening indoors in small spaces. “People harvesting microgreens from their windowsill in winter is an extreme example, from baby basil to pea shoots to radish tops. It’s like beansprouts taken to the next degree,” she says. Plant breeders creating veggie cultivars that are both compact and increasingly ornamental is another facet of it. “Such as veggies that do double duty in a small footprint like the tiny, heart-shaped cherry tomato called ‘Sweet Valentine’ being developed by Hem Genetics which looks pretty on a tabletop or in a windowbox,” says Battersby. “Or a frilly dark basil that makes a decorative foliage plant in mixed containers, or another that has showy flowers you don’t have to snip off,” she says.

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