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Gardeners and their Gardens

Texture reigns supreme in the Testa-Vought garden

by Rebecca Sweet
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Welcome to Andrea Testa-Vought’s garden, a textural paradise designed by the amazing Bernard Trainor. As you’ll see, this garden is truly a feast for the eyes.  But more importantly, it’s also a lesson in the subtle but powerful effects texture can have in the garden. I first visited this garden in December, on what was […]

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Shades of Gray in a No-Lawn Front Garden

by Rebecca Sweet
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I’m thrilled to announce that one of the gardens I designed for a client is featured in this month’s Sunset magazine (if you don’t subscribe, you can read about it here in their online version). While the folks at Sunset did a fantastic job capturing the drought-tolerant aspects of this garden (the homeowners reduced their […]

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Transforming a side yard from Blah to Beautiful

by Rebecca Sweet
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In honor of my new book, Refresh Your Garden Design, I’ll be spending the next few months writing about the many different aspects of color, texture and form.  Whether its gardeners I’ve met who have embraced these design principles to the fullest, simple solutions you can use to transform your own garden, or perhaps  specific […]

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Mixing flowers and succulents

by Rebecca Sweet
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There’s no doubt about it, Debra Lee Baldwin certainly knows her succulents.  But when visiting her Escondido, CA garden again a few months ago, I was struck by something else – the flowers.  Not the flowers of succulents (which are amazing enough), but regular ol’ perennial, annual and native flowers that casually grow throughout the […]

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The heartbeat of my garden – my transformed shed

by Rebecca Sweet
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This month my office is being featured in Sunset Magazine (my copy just came in the mail yesterday and I’m so excited I can hardly breathe!) I’ve literally grown up with Sunset in the house, whether it was magazines, how-to or garden books lying around my mother’s and grandmother’s house.  So imagine the pride that […]

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A Colorful Garden in Tucson

by Rebecca Sweet
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While visiting Arizona last month I couldn’t wait to tour a few private gardens to see first-hand how these determined and creative gardeners deal with All. That. Heat. Driving through Tucson’s wide suburban streets, where the homes and landscaping tend to blend together, my heart skipped a beat when I noticed this garden’s ‘fence’. Not your […]

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Garden Designers Roundtable: Focus on the Details

by Rebecca Sweet
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I’ve been wanting to write about this garden for a long time, and have finally found the perfect opportunity with today’s Garden Designers Roundtable topic ‘Focusing on the Details’.  (Warning:  lots of photos for this one!) While touring gardens last year with Debra Lee Baldwin, she insisted I meet her good friend, Jim Bishop.  And, […]

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A very public front garden

by Rebecca Sweet
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One thing I’ve noticed about many areas of Los Angeles is that if someone is lucky enough to have a garden at all, quite often it’s located in front of the house.  The houses either back up into the surrounding hillsides, or are on super tiny lots with neighboring houses crowding them on all sides. […]

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My Hollywood Home Away from Home

by Rebecca Sweet
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For the next few weeks I’d like to invite you to join me on my adventure in Los Angeles.  West Hollywood, to be exact.  Why am I here?  My daughter and I are touring colleges and getting to know the town she’ll call home in a year. What’s that have to do with gardening, you […]

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Garden Designers Roundtable: Our Home Gardens

by Rebecca Sweet
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In this month’s Garden Designers Roundtable, we have the honor of writing about our own personal gardens. While this may seem like an easy post to write, it’s actually been quite difficult for me.   How can I possibly share my garden with you in a way that conveys all that it means to me? While […]

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My brother’s potting shed

by Rebecca Sweet
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My brother is moving this week, and while it’s always exciting to move on in life, it can also be very bittersweet.  He had a large, beautiful garden but I think my favorite part of it was the potting shed tucked in the far corner. While his family was busy at their new home, unpacking […]

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Garden Designers Roundtable – Favorite Gardens

by Rebecca Sweet
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The topic for this month’s Garden Designers Roundtable is Garden Travel/Best Gardens.  While I immediately thought of the many beautiful gardens I’ve seen on my travels, there’s one that I’ve recently had the pleasure of visiting, and one that I can’t get out of my mind.  It’s a private garden here in Northern California, created […]

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New friends, chickens and wine – a perfect afternoon!

by Rebecca Sweet
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One of the benefits of speaking at different garden clubs is the chance to meet their members and visit their beautiful gardens.  One such person is Bonnie Manion, whom I met at the La Jolla Village Garden Club last fall. After a morning of touring gardens, we ended our day at Bonnie’s home where we […]

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Lani’s Fantastic Fence

by Rebecca Sweet
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Lani Freymiller has created one of the most incredible gardens I’ve ever seen (read more about it here).  Her garden is filled with countless design concepts and creative ideas. So many, in fact, that instead of writing the world’s longest post I’ve decided to write several shorter ones and post them throughout the year. This […]

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Lecia Davis’s Laguna Beach Garden

by Rebecca Sweet
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Have you ever toured a garden, when the moment you stepped through the front gate you were instantly transported to another time and place?  That was the case with Lecia Davis’s magnificent garden in Laguna Beach, California. I had the opportunity to visit this exquisite garden a few weeks ago and was completely caught off […]

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Lani Freymiller’s Garden – Green and Serene

by Rebecca Sweet
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As part of my ongoing series, Gardeners and their Gardens, I’d like to introduce you to a garden I visited a few months ago in southern California. I believe each garden is an expression of its creator’s soul, and that if you pay attention, you can literally feel the blood, sweat and tears that went into […]

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Debra Lee Baldwin’s Succulent Garden

by Rebecca Sweet
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A few weeks ago I was a lucky, lucky girl and had the distinct honor of touring Debra Lee Baldwin’s own garden – and what a garden it was! Debra is known by many as the ‘Queen of Succulents’, thanks to her amazing books, Succulent Container Gardens and Designing with Succulents and the many talks and […]

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A low-water, high-style garden in San Diego

by Rebecca Sweet
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I don’t think I’ve ever been as rude to another designer as I was when I saw this garden. A few weeks ago I visited my good friend Debra Lee Baldwin who graciously introduced me to a wonderful landscape designer, Frank Mitzel of Aesthetic Design.   Frank kindly took us to see a garden that […]

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Wordless Wednesday – Succulent People

by Rebecca Sweet
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Having spent a delightful morning touring the San Diego Botanical Garden last week, I must admit I was most smitten by these life-size topiaries.  Pat Hammer, Director of Operations of the Botanical Garden, created these incredible works of art, going so far as making clay masks of some of the members of the garden and […]

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