The Benefits of an Edge

Advice, Central Ohio, cobblestone, edging, Formal Garden, G A R D E N S, gardening, Gardens, Inspiration, Landscape, Landscape Design, McCullough, My Work, New Albany, Ohio | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Sometimes borders are a good thing and that includes in the garden. Edges help provide a transition between elements and can help contain gravel, mulch and turf from spreading. Besides its use for providing a barrier, edging provides an additional design element and should be considered detail.

The Benefits of an Edge, Thinking Outside the Boxwood, Metal edging w/ Green Velvet Boxwood (Buxus 'Green Velvet') and Lady's Mantle (Alchemilla mollis 'Thiller')

Metal edging along a gravel pathway.

 

 

The Benefits of an Edge, Thinking Outside the Boxwood, Brick Edging

 Bricks on edge between turf lawn and a perennial garden. 

 

Where and How to Edge: Edging is used in areas of loose stone to prevent from spreading into turf or beds, such as walkways, driveways and patio spaces. It can also be used to provide an edge along turf to prevent the spreading of grass into plant beds. Common materials used include brick, cut stone, slab stone and metal. Below is a visual ID of four major edging types in use.

 

The Benefits of an Edge, Thinking Outside the Boxwood, Edging by Type

 

The Benefits of an Edge, Thinking Outside the Boxwood, Metal edging separating pea gravel and turf

 Metal edging used to separate gravel bed and turf.  

 

Edging Problems: In areas where there is freezing and thawing, some edging material will heave out of the ground and will need to be periodically re-set. Edging is not a 100% foolproof barrier, gravel and grass will cross the line and will require maintenance. Also if the wrong gravel type is used or layered too thick, the barrier will not provide the intended function.

The Benefits of an Edge, Thinking Outside the Boxwood, Metal edging on a green roof in Columbus, Ohio, USA

Metal edging along gravel path on a green roof. 

 

The Benefits of an Edge, Thinking Outside the Boxwood, Metal edging creating a meandering path

Metal edging along a gravel path into a perennial garden. 

 

When Not to Using Edging: I don’t typically use edging around flower/perennial beds. I prefer to use a technique that includes a deep trench surrounding the bed. I use a sharp flat spade cut to make minor adjustments in the shape and insuring separation of the turf and bed.

Also please stay away from those plastic edging. If you use the method above you will have better result of keep beds shaped and materials contained. I cannot think of too many cases where plastic is ever the best solution in the garden.

 

(All photos from work by McCullough’s Landscape & Nursery)

 

Kurt Bluemel – Horticultural Royalty Remembered

G A R D E N S, gardening, Gardens, Landscape Design, Piet Oudolf | Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Last week I received a copy of Kurt Bluemel’s obituary, the Grass King, pioneer of ornamental grasses. (Read the obituary here from the Baltimore Sun). Last year at the Perennial Plant Association symposium in Vancouver I was on a garden tour with Kurt….. While touring a botanical garden he corrected the botanical name of grass for a master gardener.  The master gardener stood his ground and insisted he correct (poor guy didn’t have a clue), Kurt bluntly asked, “Do you know who I am?” The few of us who witnessed the interaction tried not to burst out in laughter- the master gardener underestimated the tourist- who we all knew as the Grass King and the unequivocal expert on ornamental grasses. While on your evening walks this week, when you see the tall plumes or blades of an ornamental grass, think of Kurt and be thankful for his passion and ethic in spreading ornamental grasses and the New American Garden Style. To see and purchase from the library of ornamental grasses Kurt curated visit www.kurtbluemel.com. There is also a wonderful tribute on the site written by Allen Bush for Kurt’s 75th birthday (here). In honor of Kurt Bluemel, here is a selection of a few of my favorite grasses.

 

Below is Piet Oudolf’s private garden, Hummelo, which bodes hundreds of grasses that catch the light and create the scene on this summer morning when I was visiting.Hummelo, Piet Oudolf's Private Garden: Kurt Bluemel - Horticultural Royalty Remembered -Thinking Outside the Boxwood,

A mass planting of one of my favorite grasses, Deschampsia cespitosa ‘Goldtau’, at the revolutionary garden of historical dutch garden designer Mien Ruys in Dedemsvaart, Holland

Deschampsia cespitosa  'Goldtau' at the garden of Mien Ruys : Kurt Bluemel - Horticultural Royalty Remembered -Thinking Outside the Boxwood,

Miscanthus ‘Cabaret’ with Cotinus ‘Velvet Cloak’ on one of my projects in New Albany, Ohio.

Miscanthus sinensis 'Cabaret' with Cotinus : Kurt Bluemel - Horticultural Royalty Remembered -Thinking Outside the Boxwood,

A huge drift of Hakonechloa macra ‘Aureola’ paired with Japanese Painted Fern in New Albany, OH.

Hakonechloa macra 'Aureola' : Kurt Bluemel - Horticultural Royalty Remembered -Thinking Outside the Boxwood,

Calamagrostis × acutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’ and Acorus gramineus ‘Oborozuki’ play an important part of creating contrast and in both texture and color in this modern perennial garden.

New Albany, Ohio Private Garden by Nick McCullough: Kurt Bluemel - Horticultural Royalty Remembered -Thinking Outside the Boxwood,

Strategically placed Calamagrostis × acutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’ weave the garden together at Piet Oudolf’s garden outside his studio.

Hummelo, Piet Oudolf's Private Garden: Kurt Bluemel - Horticultural Royalty Remembered -Thinking Outside the Boxwood,

Hakonechloa macra ‘Aureola’ line the path of the modern display garden at Appeltern (De Tuinen van Appeltern) in Holland the contrast of the fine foliage and the board cobbles and hedging caught my eye.

Hakonechloa macra 'Aureola' : Kurt Bluemel - Horticultural Royalty Remembered -Thinking Outside the Boxwood,

Posh Agritourism

Advice, Family Gardening, G A R D E N S, Garden Tours, gardening, Gardens, Inspiration, Landscape, Landscape Design | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

I grew up taking a week “field to table” vacation every summer to my grandparents pig farm in rural Ohio. Our excursions included early morning feedings, trips to the feed mill, swimming in the pond, picking bramble berries, helping in the fields, and sleeping outside listening to the cicadas. When I was younger I assumed everyone grew up with a connection to the farming community, but now realize my Midwest childhood exposed me to the real field-to-table system that most never experience. There are sites like FarmStayUS.com and Agritoursimworld.com that connect urbanites with agritourism or farm stay vacations on real working farms, but the very posh can stay at places like Daylesford, Blackberry Farm and Babylonstoren, where the field to table lifestyle has been coated in beautiful potagers, swimming ponds and spas.  They are a far cry from staying on my grandparent’s farm, however even I am transfixed and inspired by their bucolic gardens, stone farm houses and swimming holes. Here are some photos of agritoursim to inspire you.

 

Babylonstoren. Located outside Cape Town, South Africa, Babylonstoren is an old world working farm in the style of the historical Cape of Good Hope farms along the ancient trading route, supplying sailors with fresh produce. Visitors can walk among the acres of gardens, visit the winery, swim or relax at the spa. Babylonstoren invites its visitors to help with the harvest or tour the fields, but you are just as welcome to enjoy its bounty at dinner. Images below from Rue Magazine (1) and Babylonstoren (2-5)

Posh Agritourism-Babylonstoren- Thinking Outside the Boxwood

Posh Agritourism-Babylonstoren- Thinking Outside the BoxwoodPosh Agritourism-Babylonstoren- Thinking Outside the BoxwoodPosh Agritourism-Babylonstoren- Thinking Outside the BoxwoodPosh Agritourism-Babylonstoren- Thinking Outside the BoxwoodPosh Agritourism-Babylonstoren- Thinking Outside the Boxwood

 

Blackberry Farm. Capitalizing on the great southern food tradition, Blackberry is a true foodie destination in the foothills of the Smokey Mountains, pulling in top chefs from all over.  Less on the designed landscape and more about the natural beauty of the foothills.

Blackberry Farm Images from: Town & County Magazine (1)  and Williams-Sonoma Taste (2)

Posh Agritourism-Blackberry Farm- Thinking Outside the BoxwoodPosh Agritourism-Blackberry Farm- Thinking Outside the Boxwood

 

 

Daylesford. Mixing both argitourism with anglomania, Daylesford is Pinterest porn dotting just about every garden board. Daylesford markets and cafes beautifully display the produce from the farm and is like its own city filled with livestock, gardens, buildings. Image Sources from Pinterest (1,23) Cylde Oak (4)

Posh Agritourism-Daylesford Organic- Thinking Outside the Boxwood Posh Agritourism-Daylesford Organic- Thinking Outside the Boxwood Posh Agritourism-Daylesford Organic- Thinking Outside the BoxwoodPosh Agritourism-Daylesford Organic- Thinking Outside the Boxwood

 

Topping Rose House. Bridgehampton is not exactly in the heartland of America, however Topping Rose House is a hotel and restaurant operated by celebrated chef Tom Colicchio with a focus on fresh field to table food. The hotel features an one acre garden and sources food from other local fisherman and farmers to feed the guests. More of the middle ground of the Hampton’s lifestyle with garden design and rows of vegetables. Images from Topping Rose House website.

Posh Agritourism-Topping Rose House- Thinking Outside the Boxwood Posh Agritourism-Topping Rose House- Thinking Outside the Boxwood Posh Agritourism-Topping Rose House- Thinking Outside the Boxwood Posh Agritourism-Topping Rose House- Thinking Outside the Boxwood Posh Agritourism-Topping Rose House- Thinking Outside the Boxwood