Spotted while driving down the street: this fantastic front yard garden made of heathers, ornamental grasses, and junipers. It’s incredibly colorful, requires almost no care, and is perfectly adapted to coastal California’s chilly temps and dry summers. It’s the ultimate anti-lawn.
I particularly like the way they used big, beefy grass-like plants in place of hedges. A stand of New Zealand flax serves as a border between this house and the neighbor’s, and against the house, a row of miscanthus (or something miscanthus-like) acts kind of like a foundation planting. It gives the whole thing a little structure, and it’s easy to control: the flax basically needs no care at all, and the miscanthus had just recently gotten a haircut to make it stand up a little straighter, but even that is hardly necessary.
I looked at this garden and thought, "Why don’t I do this? I could easily plant a front yard garden exactly like this."
But the answer was obvious. This is not the garden of a plant acquirer. This is the garden of someone who can make a decision about what will grow in their garden, plant whatever that is, and sit back and enjoy it for the next ten years. This is not the garden of someone who hits three or four nurseries on a Saturday morning and comes home with more plants than they know what to do with. My garden will always be something of a jumble, because my garden is a place to put the plants I have bought. Period.
I could tell somebody else how to plant a garden that looks like this, but that would be predicated on the idea that their garden didn’t have to accommodate their shopping habit. Do as I say, not as I do.
It’s been too long since we’ve had a GardenRant poll, so in that spirit: