1. Chill drinks in unexpected containers. Holden and Moll use the 39-inch-long soaking tubs pictured below left. When the party’s over, the vessels revert to soaking tubs (supplied by hot- and cold-water spigots nearby). You could also use smaller glazed ceramic bowls from the nursery as coolers.
2. Hang portable lighting fixtures. White lights are instant magic, strung overhead or threaded into baskets. Holden and Moll also put floating candles in their pond, lanterns on seat walls, and tiki torches among tropical foliage.
3. Fill a pond with water lilies. Choose from tropical kinds, whose large blooms (5 or more inches wide) typically stand well above the water, or hardy kinds, which usually lie at the water’s surface. A mail-order source is Lilypons Water Gardens (800/999-5459).
4. Embellish plain surfaces with insets of broken pottery. Save ceramic pieces to dress up birdbaths or other stone surfaces; for greatest effect, use pottery bits sparingly and in limited colors. They make striking accents around the edges of Holden and Moll’s 16-foot-long concrete table and the nearby pillars.
5. Grow bougainvillea in a pot. Its brilliant blooms act as an all-summer flower arrangement. Best varieties for pots include ‘Brilliant Variegated’ (brick red bracts); ‘Crimson Jewel’ (crimson bracts); ‘Hawaii’ (also sold as ‘Raspberry Ice’; red bracts, variegated foliage); and ‘Singapore White’ (white bracts).