Having just returned from Boston and the national APLD conference, I thought I would share some of the inspiring design elements from gardens that I saw.

Color garden at Old South Church

The first was not even part of the conference. Walking to dinner, Niki and I passed Old South Church and its gardens. There was a very nice white garden but the garden we loved was the colorful orange and purple one. It was full of cannas, dark-leaved Hibiscus, Verbena bonariensis, Helenium, Coleus, and the deadheads of the purple Allium giganteum.

Blue metal railing

One of the gardens we visited in West Roxbury was the home of landscape designer, Christie Dustman. This woman is a creative genius. I dubbed her landscape the “museum of ingenuity”. There are several decorative elements that she and partner have created but Christie is the one who places these elements and the plants. The railing up to the front door was an indicator of what was to come.

Curvilinear stone sidewalk of varying widths

The sidewalk leading from the front to the back was not your typical narrow concrete walk. Instead, it was curvilinear and the width was not always the same.

Garden vignette of color and texture

Christie and her partner are conifer collectors and the garden is artfully filled with them. Each vignette is carefully considered for height, texture, form, and color. One of my favorites was a lime-green, upright Chamaecyparis obtusa, a dwarf Picea pungens (Blue Spruce), and a Japanese maple interspersed with Alchemilla, other perennials,  grasses and stone.

Borrowed landscape; unusual fence of mirrors, glass, wood, and metal

At the back of this small property is an unusual fence composed of glass, mirrors, wood, and metal. What is truly unique about this fence is that it borrows the landscape behind it, implying that the hot tub behind it is in another room into which you may venture. However, it is her neighbor’s back yard.

Wavy fence

Gate pattern that echoes that of fence

Different wavy fence

The back side fence is constructed of wood in a wavy pattern that is echoed by the gate. The other (front) side of the gate has straight wood panels that are different heights and wavy on top instead.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this glimpse of an amazing garden.