Creative front-yard makeovers

Two landscape designers use some of the same great ideas, yet each garden ends up with its own distinct look

Photo by Brooke Dietrich


Landscape designer Brooke Dietrich added a fence and then—inspired by the king palm —went for size and color in her plantings. Building this garden around an existing king palm called for vibrant flowers, cool foliage, and strong shapes. Whereas Ginny’s fence is a rich auburn that picks up her trees’ rust-colored bark, Brooke Dietrich chose to paint hers a plant-framing black. To cut costs, she kept her hardscaping to a minimum, adding only a new front walk made of budget-friendly concrete. Then she planted shrubs and perennials, placing colorful blooms outside the fence and quieter green plants inside the fence. The effect is breath­taking, especially in winter and spring, when almost the whole yard is in full bloom.

Design: Brooke Dietrich, Green ... Landscapes to Envy, Costa Mesa (


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