Open Garden Days II: Arresting Simplicity

Some of the best garden features have nothing to do with plants. I was intrigued by this cement ring inset with stones pressed into soil. From the gardens of designer and horticulturist Teri Condon.

On Open Days, sponsored by the Garden Conservancy, my husband and I delight in the non-plant elements that give a garden a sense of magic. Sometimes a beautiful pot doesn’t have to be planted, it can just be filled with stones. Or the right sculpture can make a bed of unexciting groundcover come alive. Or a salvaged piece of metal provides a needed focal point for a raucous perennial garden.

In the fabulous landscape of Ann Krupp Bryan in Saugerties, we came upon this stunning Spirals Garden. Ann placed it behind a nondescript outbuilding, where we "stumbled" upon it to our great delight.

Sometimes, throwing money at the landscape can result in less imagination and magic. These days I prefer garden elements that are not “installed,” but rather shaped and fashioned, with simple materials.

Stones, a statue, and the elegant ground cover, European ginger (Asarum europaeum) in the gardens of Ann Krupp Bryan.

We like low-brow surprises in our newly planted garden, like this bowling ball we bought for $2 at a yard sale. It moves about the yard quietly, filling space where needed and causing the neighbors to do double-takes.

One Response to “Open Garden Days II: Arresting Simplicity”
  1. vintagejenta says:

    Love the bowling ball! It’s really pretty and a very creative idea.

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