Front Entry Transformation

From Ordinary to Extraordinary

The vivid pink summer annual ‘New Guinea’ Inpatients linger into fall. Here we see them merging into the yet-to-bloom fall mums and a fall themed container.

Design Goal and Elements

Goal: Create a Four Season Entry Garden that draws attention to the recessed front door.

Design Elements:

1) Create a focal point that draws the eye to the front door.

2) Treat the roomy wide path as a mini courtyard. Change the brick material to bluestone. The stone color blends with the colors of the house, fieldstone step, and the entry landing.

3) Find an elegant simple container. Then fill it with bold color mass that echoes the front door paint. Repeat that color in the seasonal annuals planted in the surrounding bed.

4) Create a ‘winter garden’ and a four season planting. Note that the variegated low growing broadleaf evergreen provides both a textural, shape, and color contrast to the pyramidal evergreen and the house color. It is drift that embraces the mini courtyard and is echoed by the plant bed shape.

Front Door Garden Focal Point

This welcoming garden is one part of the Landscape Master Plan created for this client. The design was implemented and constructed in phases over several years. The landscape design transformation began with the entry garden design plan.

The garden installation’s first step was to select the “Perfect Container”. It needed to make a statement and to be seen above the plantings. To get that height we needed a base stone. It was important to me that the client love the container and that it be simple and elegant form that repeated the grey tones of the bluestone mini courtyard entry.

Here’s how we chose it. First, I had included concept photos of several styles with my Master Plan package. Knowing the client’s preferences, I searched on-line. Then visited several stores to see what was in stock. Then I invited my client on a “field trip” to select a container. In person, you can touch and feel it as a physical and visual presence. The one featured is the one my client loved that fit our design parameters.

Fall container arrangement with vivid mums. The mums planted at its base will fully open to the same color soon.

Notice the drift of low growing green boxwood behind. It embraces the container and adds four seasons of visual contrast. The design concept is to create a special place to greet people and also to draw the eye to the recessed front door.

Before: It’s Ordinary and Dull

Before. Ordinary. Not especially inviting, is it? Definitely needs a landscape transformation. A Master Landscape Design Plan was created to do just that!

After: It’s Warm, Inviting, and a Happy Place

In this photo, you see the landscape design transformation of this part of the front gardens. The bluestone entry walk, drive wall and lanterns, and the plantings you see were installed in later phases. Except for the mature oak trees and one hemlock, we added all the trees, shrubs, and perennials.
Looking out from the front door porch to the street. The four-season garden is planned to work in winter as well as spring, summer, and fall.
The Inpatients were planted in the container as a bold color block from late spring to early fall. The white porch bench also plays a role. It welcomes and invites you to pause, linger, and engage your senses while you view the gardens.
Note the red bench. It’s the front door color! It invites and makes a color statement all year long. The lawn is being reseeded so it will be lush next spring.
My Client loves the textures, foliage combinations with colorful annuals, and the inviting bench. This garden invites you to linger, breathe deep, and let your senses come alive.

Now’s a perfect time to start your own landscape transformation. Your garden planning starts with an Initial Consultation.


Book your Initial Consultation. Let’s explore the possibilities of your landscape to be beautiful, functional, and earth-friendly! Let’s reimage and transform it.

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