As a Landscape Designer in the Santa Clarita Valley, nature and inspiration are very important to me. I find my inspiration mostly outside because that is where I can really explore all my senses.
I am constantly seeing new plants, rocks, and design patterns wherever I go; scent is usually next – I walk past a fragrant flower, or brush a fragrant perennial or shrub and memories visit. I actually find that for me, the plants that I touch to release scents are usually the most evocative. Crushing the leaves of a pineapple sage, rubbing some scented geraniums, and trimming California sage are all things that I enjoy.
That brings me to touch, I’m very tactile with plants – as I brush past and must feel the leaves and flowers so texture is very important to me. I love the fleecy texture of lamb’s ears, the towering softness of an Agave flower stalk, and even the rough feel of sandpaper verbena (one of my new favorites).
My ears tune in to the friendly chirp of birds enjoying the berries on a Toyon, the hummingbirds zipping by on their quest for nectar add to the lovely wind chimes and the soft swish of grasses and plants with umbels.
Then there is taste – I’m an avid edible gardener and love to explore the addition of edibles in my garden and the gardens of others. My summer veggies, figs and grapes are gone for the year but my new crop of winter vegetables is just beginning and my kumquats and Oro Blanco Grapefruits are starting to mature. Winter is going to be a delicious season at home!
I think that every season has it proper time to take a pause to not only smell the roses but to decide if you want to make any changes to those roses you’ve planted in your garden. I am counting on the weather to start cooling down soon, so I can take some strolls in the afternoons but so far my inspirational walks have be relegated to the early morning and evenings. Getting out into nature is good for the soul, and if you have a garden (or want to have one) it is one of the greatest ways to find new ideas, revisit old garden loves and make plans.
Take time for yourself, your family, and your pets and get outside and enjoy yourself. After you’ve taken your stroll, sit down with your favorite beverage and jot some notes down about the things you saw and how they made you feel. Next step is to collect photographs (you can take them yourself or find them online) and keep them together with your notes. If you do this on a regular basis, you’ll be surprised how fast you have formulated your dream garden.
So, it’s time to get out into nature, find some inspiration and … call me if you have questions.