Fam­ily Gar­dens

Condé Nast House & Garden - - DESIGN NOTES -

Car­rie shares some trade se­crets on gar­dens geared for fam­ily liv­ing.

Cre­ate a food gar­den Grow­ing fruit and veg­eta­bles is a great fam­ily pas­time. Let your kids pick herbs and salad greens while you’re cook­ing – it’s a mod­est yet pro­found way to en­gage and teach them about where food comes from. If you don’t have enough time to tend to a veg­etable gar­den, fo­cus on peren­nial food crops, fruit, herbs and berries that don’t need to be re­planted sea­son­ally.

Drive­way re­boot Cre­ate a mul­ti­pur­pose space where your kids can play and prac­tice sport against the garage.

Let them dig in We don’t nur­ture a sense of en­thu­si­asm for plants in chil­dren enough. It’s such an un­der-ex­plored means of ex­pres­sion for them. So, give your kids own­er­ship over a sec­tion of the gar­den. Take a trip to the nurs­ery and let them pick their plants with your guid­ance. If you have a large gar­den, give them their own ded­i­cated plant bed. With a smaller gar­den, give each child a nice big pot to plant up with an­nu­als each sea­son.

Make a splash One of the most pop­u­lar fea­tures is a swim­ming pool. But, once it’s been fam­ily-proofed with fenc­ing or cov­ers, it tends to be un­sightly. Think care­fully and cre­atively about pool safety. Cre­at­ing a ter­raced gar­den that sep­a­rates the pool with level changes is a de­sign-savvy way to make a pool in­ac­ces­si­ble without re­quir­ing un­sightly in­fra­struc­ture. If you’re will­ing to in­vest, con­sider glass balustrades rather than pool fenc­ing. With a roll-up cover, take the time to de­sign be­low-ground stor­age so that it blends seam­lessly with the sur­rounds.

Teen spirit Don’t for­get to cater for teenagers. Few gar­dens are de­signed with kids over 12 in mind. Teenagers love to hang out in the gar­den. They will hap­pily lounge around in the fresh air for hours with their friends if there’s some­thing plush or special to lure them out­doors. Think comfy, over­stuffed out­door bean­bags, ham­mock seats, built-in day beds, arm­chair li­los and a large um­brella.

clock­wise, from top left Rosa ‘l’aimant’, a freeflow­ing flori­bunda rose; ar­chi­tec­tural ar­ti­chokes make a great ad­di­tion To ed­i­ble gar­dens; Me­laleuca armil­laris, a spec­i­men rarely found in lo­cal gar­dens; bur­gundy ice­berg fea­tures clus­ters of wine-red blooms and makes a good cut­ting flower; Pen­ste­mon ‘husker red’ does well in wet win­ters

op­po­site page, clock­wise, from top a struc­tured gravel path­way and rib­bons of richly lay­ered plant­ing line The main lawn Ter­race off The pa­tio; The pool Ter­race is gra­ciously framed by a copse of robinia Trees; The in­ter­me­di­ate Ter­race be­tween The lawn and pool fea­tures lush robinia Trees, while hedg­ing adds a Touch of for­mal­ity

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