In 2012, I started work on this stunning colonial home. The clients, a loving family with teenage children, have painstakingly renovated every detail with the help of one of my favorite local architects. Over time, they’ve created a truly unique and authentic colonial masterpiece. The garden was the last piece to the puzzle, but the steep slope at the rear of the property line posed a major challenge. Ultimately, with the creation of a wildflower meadow and a multifunctional deck space with distinctly defined dining and lounging areas, we were able to design a sanctuary that parents and teens alike can enjoy.
One of the reasons the clients decided to turn to a professional landscape architect was to find a solution for the steep slope that ran from the property line to the rear foundation. In keeping with the Colonial period of this house, I designed a low stone wall to push back the hill and create a level gathering space. We maintained a gradual slope adjacent to the garage and planted it with meadow grasses and wildflowers to reduce maintenance and increase visual interest. The patio, an extension of the main deck, is edged with a low stone wall that can double as extra seating and a generous dining area with an inviting fire pit. Throughout this garden, I used old-fashioned plantings to support the colonial architecture of the home. I further defined the individual space in the yard with boxwood hedges, lush blue hydrangeas, and double peonies. I added dogwood trees for shade and scale to counterbalance the towering oaks and maples in the surrounding woods.
It took a great deal of manipulation of the existing landscape to transform this difficult plot into the garden oasis that would best support the clients’ lifestyle. I am delighted with the result of this hard work and am still a believer that often the toughest obstacles glean the most exquisite results.
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