Everything Else

The Ones That Got Away

We have been hard to bring you the best of the best for our new book (working title only), due out in the fall of 2016 with Timber Press. The less-than-romantic aspects of that mean staggering out of bed at unearthly hours for photo shoots and then working late at night editing, critiquing, and selecting only those images that we feel really tell a story. We want you to see at a glance what a fabulous foliage framework can do for a piece of art or a special flower for instance.

In the selection process, we have to set aside many combinations that are gorgeous but that perhaps include a shrub that we have already featured several times. Or sometimes there are just one too many slug holes! Occasionally our photography was good – but not excellent – and we are striving for excellence.

In this post, I thought I’d share of few of those images that showed great creativity on the part of the homeowner but didn’t make the cut for the book. Be inspired! Don’t consider them ‘outtakes’ but rather the ones that (almost) got away.

Euphorbia myrsinites

Architectural detail

I love the curved lines of this metal sculpture. Nestled among the stiff succulent branches of donkey tail spurge (Euphorbia myrsinites) and backed by a variegated juniper this is a delightful ‘garden moment’. Have you got a rock retaining wall that could use a little accessorizing?

New Plant!


Have you seen Neptune’s Gold sea holly (Eryngium) in person yet? It looks like the one above (which is Sapphire Blue) but those bracts are actually GOLD. Totally amazing. You’ll have to wait for our book to see the combination included with the new perennial. It is STUNNING!

Meanwhile, enjoy this duo; a wonderful soft color echo between Sapphire Blue sea holly with the teal and gold juniper behind it.

Look THIS way!

if only this clematis flower would have been turned slightly – or I could have found a better angle. Still, I know you will still appreciate the ingenuity for allowing this to grow through the columnar purple barberry Helmond’s Pillar. Why didn’t I think of that?

Floral extravaganza

Floral extravaganza

This delightful combination would be perfect – for a different book! The gold variegated foliage of the Emerald and Gold wintercreeper (Euonymus fortunei ‘Emerald and Gold’) sets off the white Jupiter’s beard (Centranthus ruber ‘Albus’) ) beautifully which in turn allows the orange poppy to shine. Can’t honestly say this is a ‘foliage first‘ combo, but you have to admit that the foliage is definitely a key part of its success.

Fishing hole

A charming vignette that tells a story of the one that got away. From the artfully placed gnarled tree root to the carefully selected boulder that holds water like a pool, this scene has got the perfect Pacific Northwest vibe, using native sword ferns as well as conifers and grasses to set the scene. We had to concede that the story it didn’t tell was foliage first – and that’s OK. We love it anyway and know you will too.

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