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Web design resources: blogs & designer websites

14 years ago

I have two garden-related confessions to make today . . .

First - When I first arrived here at GardenWeb, a number of years ago, I was almost exclusively a plant nerd. I saw plants as individuals, in isolation from the garden as a whole, and most often of interest simply due to their flowers. Foliage? ho-hum . . . Overall landscape design? Huh?

I have learned a LOT by perusing these forums . . . this forum, the landscape design forum (though due to an odd mix of experienced, strong-personalitied folk along with beginners or non-gardeners, the discussion there is of mixed benefit - I tend pick & choose, more so than other forums . . .), and specialty plant forums such as trees, shrubs, clematis, confers, and perennials. Im not sure how much has translated into the actual appearance of my garden, though some of it must have, but I look at gardens differently now. Foliage and hardscape in particular are two parts of a well-made garden that I now try to consider when I plan my landscape along with how the garden fits into its surroundings as a whole. Several of those folks that I learned from in the early days have expanded their web presence or moved on to other areas of the web instead of GW. So, inspired by the discussion of gardening books we value, I thought it might be interest to share resources that we use or enjoy that are web-based in addition to GardenWeb.

Second - IÂm an addict of garden-related eye-candy. I recently bought a book (which I will be adding to the books thread) called 1000 Garden Ideas by Stafford Cliff, which is organized around themes, such as benches, fences, etc., and has a huge number of images and almost no text. With that in mind, IÂm going to try to organize more than one thread, each with a theme, such as overall design (this one); fences, trellises, and arbors; stonework, pavement, and mosaic; . . . thatÂs as far as IÂve gotten. While some of the sites arenÂt directly intended for garden use, I can see using their ideas for inspiration in my own garden. I'll just add links and let you peruse on your own, and will look forward to learning about some new resources myself.

So here are some of my favorite links related to overall design:

My absolute favorite is a blog written by Michelle Derviss, a designer who works just north of San Francisco. I like it because of the eye candy, and the easy links below each image to her larger portfolios of images, but even more because she often chooses a theme, such as a particular project, a garden tour, or a particular type of garden component (like paths or water in the the garden) and discusses and illustrates ideas. Always good food for thought.

I love the landscape design skills of this home gardener in Michigan, david5311 here on GW. Here is his photobucket page . . . what an inspiration!

Here's a designer whose portfolio includes before images as well as after. I like the fact that it helps me see what can be done to add interest to a very basic suburban or urban space.

This designer explains briefly what his considerations were for each image.

Even though I live in a cold rural area in an old farm house and many of these designers work in warmer or suburban to urban settings, I can think about the design itself and can see using ideas from these gardens that are sited in quite different settings from my own. The designs don't necessarily suit my taste, but in each situation I can learn from the discussion and/or what I see in the images.

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