extend the garden season

An existing broken concrete wall was the starting point for developing an inviting seating area. Walls make great backdrops for staging big seating pieces and when combined with tall plants, help create a room-like feeling. (Photo by David Tsay at Kate Ryan, Inc, courtesy of Rizzoli)

Not all of us live in warm and temperate climates, but there are things we can all do to extend our warm seasons and increase our engagement with our gardens. Here are some suggestions to prolong your outdoor time.

INCLUDE A FIRE PIT In addition to creating a compelling focal point, the warmth of a fire pit will inspire the use of your garden at night and during cooler weather.

PLANT FOR ALL SEASONS Combine evergreen perennials for year round structure and annuals for seasonal interest and color in window boxes, pots, and planters.

PLANT BULBS In cooler climates, bulbs bring a welcome burst of color in winter and spring and offer a taste of what’s to come in summer.

GROW INSIDE Herbs and citrus can be grown indoors, as long as they get some sunlight.

CREATE AN ARRANGEMENT I often use a succulent or air plant (also known as epiphyte) in a low bowl or small planter to brighten a tabletop.

GRILL ALL YEAR Cooking outside is possible in just about any season—don’t let damp or cold weather stop you.

BUILD A COVERED PATIO A sheltered space will keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

ADD HEAT Choose from a range of freestanding and wall-mounted heaters, or install radiant heat for warmth in cool climates.

GROW WINTER CROPS In fall and winter in more temperate climates, plant greens, root vegetables, and herbs in your edible garden for year-round production.

PREPARE FOR SPRING During the winter, start thinking about what plants you want to add, mulch beds, cut back perennials as needed, and sow seeds in tiny containers indoors to get a jump on the warmer months.


outdoor livingExcerpt reprinted from ©Gardens Are for Living: Design Inspiration for Outdoor Spaces, by Judy Kameon, Rizzoli New York, 2014 (Photo by Tom Mannion, courtesy of Rizzoli)

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Landscape designer Judy Kameon shares her perspective on the casual and chic California vibe and outdoor living in an excerpt from her book. 

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