The following post was written by my garden designer Terri Wilcox, owner of Terri Wilcox Garden Design in Wilmot, NH. She is the master mind behind all of our gardens, including the fabulous Zen Garden. Terri is an extremely talented landscaper but more importantly to me, she is a good friend. I will feature her unbelievable work at my carriage barn in a future post.
“One of the great things about building a home is the ability to choose the exact features and designs that suit you. Your new home is tailored to fit your lifestyle, therefore its features are designed to your specific tastes and style.
The same is true for your outdoor spaces. The excitement of building doesn’t stop at your front or back door; it extends to the outside of your house, too. Building gives the homeowner a blank canvas on which to paint beautiful landscapes – with plants.
Your new landscape should be an extension of the beauty and function you’ve incorporated into the interior design of your home. One way to envision your space is to see it as a set of “rooms” which have specific functions and styles. Some of the rooms will be public; think of your living room or foyer, and some will be private such as the bedroom and bath. Usually the rooms on the street side of your house are considered public and have features which enhance curb appeal as well as provide a welcoming transition to the home. They might include a wide walkway, foundation plantings and/or street entrance plantings. Questions you may ask yourself are: 1) how much privacy do I want from the street and 2) how will I direct guests to the main entrance?
The second set of garden rooms, the private areas, can be both functional and stylish. Considerations should include how the space will be used, needs for privacy from neighbors, and individual desires such as attracting wildlife or vegetable gardening. You can create a patio shaded by a vine covered trellis for entertaining guests in style. You may want a flat open grassy expanse next to a sunny sitting area so you can watch the kids play while enjoying a cool drink. You may want a colorful perennial garden for strolling and quiet contemplation ( in this setting I’d consider a cool cocktail mandatory! – BeamBabe). The options are limited only by your imagination.
Now that ideas are percolating, the question is how to start. The answer depends on the scale of the projects you would like to complete. Most homeowners will use a professional to help with the site work, even if they can choose and put in their own trees, shrubs and plants. If hardscape such as stone walls, patios and/or retaining walls are involved, professional help is almost certainly a must. Often the local garden center can give you a good recommendation for a landscaper. It’s also good to ask friends and neighbors, especially if you like their landscaping.
Your landscaping is a great way to connect with the outdoors, entertain, welcome guests and have fun. The process of planning, designing and building your dream garden is almost as pleasurable as being in the new outdoor home you create.”