Pasadena landscape architect Heather Lenkin came up with a simple way to make a tabletop garden. Follow her easy how-to for a living centerpiece of your own.
Steven A. Gunther
9 of27Steven A. Gunther
In a front-yard bench
With a built-in slit for succulents, this garden bench design will turn any neglected nook into a coveted spot for R&R.
10 of27Roy Hellwig
On the roof
This garden covers cloaks the walls and rooftop of a master suite addition. Wrapped in waterproof vinyl, the structure is fitted with modular cells that resemble ice cube trays, each containing rooted sedums and meadow plants (lantana, ornamental grasses, and yarrow). An automatic drip system takes care of watering. Design: Marc and Paul Bricault.
11 of27Saxon Holt
On a birdfeeder
This simple birdhouse is the perfect place to plant a miniature green roof. Succulents and groundcovers like moss, ivy, thyme, and small sedums will flourish in the shallow depth of the feeder’s roof.
Instead of framing a picture, why not a whole garden? Here, cuttings of assorted succulents knit together to create colorful, textural living tapestries.
13 of27Sheila Schmitz
Atop a doghouse
Even Fido deserves a living roof. Designed by Stephanie Rubin, this doghouse is built of fragrant, Forest Stewardship Council–certified red cedar, assembled using nontoxic glue, and painted with pup-friendly pigments. The roof is waterproofed with beeswax and planted with native perennials.
Thomas J. Story
14 of27Thomas J. Story
In the air
Looking for the ultimate low-maintenance houseplant?
Tillandsias, also known as air plants, are native to tropical parts of the Americas, where they live without soil on trees and rocks.
Strong wind is no friend to most patio umbrellas, but it would take a hurricane to budge this setup.
The umbrella rises from a sleeve centered in a flowerpot that’s filled with three layers of material: a bottom layer of lava rock to hold the sleeve in place, a center layer of concrete for extra rigidity, and a top layer of planting mix. When there’s no need for shade, just lift out the umbrella—the plants should mask the sleeve.