A LANDSCAPE FOR LIVING AND LINGERING
--- Anne K Moore
March 20, 2009 ---
Photos by Anne K Moore ---
Boulders, flagstone, exotic dark wood decks, palm
trees, and flowers come together in this award-winning garden.
Fiesta colors of orange, red, and yellow greet
visitors arriving at the front door of this South Carolina home. The yellow and red blooms of lantana
ÔMiss Huff' blend with red begonias, orange and yellow marigolds, and yellow
straw flowers. Blue agapanthus,
fuchsia pink million bells petunias, yellow and apricot daylilies, and a thread
leaf coreopsis in an unusual deep wine-red color add contrasts.
Bird song accompanies guests strolling to the
lakeside patio and decks in the private areas. Here, cooler colors and foliage enhance the appeal of the
garden spaces, beckoning visitors to come and linger. Foliage is artfully combined. The foliage of sago palm, daylily, and iris complements the
gardener' favorite fountains of ornamental grass.
Extensive outdoor living spaces have been
added. A large multi-level deck
begins high up on the second floor.
The staircase twists and turns, gradually dropping down to a screened
room with another outside seating area, and then on down to a new flagstone
patio. The different levels make
it feel beachy.
The lake views are serene and comforting.
Holly ferns (Cyrtomium
USDA Zones 7b-11), tough and attractive, are put to perfect use under the open
stairway and deck areas. More
northern gardeners could use the evergreen Christmas fern (Polystichum acrostichoides USDA Zones 3-9).
Trouble free choices for the shady areas leading
into the garden include hostas and the small East
Indian holly ferns (Arachnoides simplicior USDA
Zones 7-10) with their notched and striped foliage. The big leaved tropical looking fatsia
(Fatsia japonica USDA Zones 8-11) is
under-planted near the walkways with fragrant dwarf gardenias.
The Japanese garden concept of burying up to 2/3
of the rocks'surface was used in placing boulders throughout the garden. This technique gives a sense of
permanence. The boulders look as
though they have been there for years.
The boulders are placed strategically in the
bends, corners, and changes in grade in the stone wall. These outcroppings break up the
straight line; adding interest to what could have been a monotonous straight
section. Sedums, creeping phlox,
and creeping fig spill over the rounded tops of stone or rest in the
The retaining walls were built to look like
stacked stone but they actually have mortar holding the stones together. This technique, using a backing of
cement block for strength, allows no mortar to show.
Flagstones from Virginia in gentle earth tones of
crme, beige, and brown floor the large patio. Shadows and light play off the soft colors, complementing
the house and deck.
Sago palms are very temperamental in the interior
South Carolina climate. They came
through their first year with a little cover when frost threatened. The second year they suffered a
setback. All of the fronds on two
of them turned a muddy brown.
After lifting them up, they discovered white roots, which mean a live
root ball. They cut off all the
dead fronds, replanted, and waited.
Procrastination can be a virtue when it comes to pulling out seemingly
dead plants. They all recovered.
The lavender blue flowers of Russian sage, silver
foliage of pinks, verbena ÔHomestead Purple' and a grape colored daylily blend
their colors throughout the borders.
Near the lake, a red Japanese maple is under-planted with burgundy
Landscaping a large property while preserving
views of the lake can be a daunting task.
This award winning landscape beckons family and friends outdoors to
enjoy the views, the wildlife, the scents, and the lake.