Wise words from the editor-in-chief’s sister: “If you want to understand how we live out here, you need this magazine.”

Cover of Sunset's 2021 Garden Issue, with people sitting in the grass watching the sunset
Thomas J. Story

When I moved to California from New York some 20 years ago, my sister, who was living in Seattle, bought me a subscription to Sunset magazine and told me, “If you want to understand how we live out here, you need this magazine.” 

By “out here” I knew she meant “the West,” like it was some singular entity. And while that’s by no means wholly accurate, it’s still sort of true. I remember flipping through the first issue and seeing fescue grass ringing paving stones in just-right backyards. Succulents and cacti and seasonal vegetables. Vistas of mountains and tiny, captivating details of little shops. 

I remember thinking: I can make that meandering path. I can shop the farmer’s market for that produce and make that food. I can drive to the mountains. I can linger a little longer in my backyard and live a better life here in the West. And, thanks to Sunset, I did. 

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Now that I’m the editor, when I work with our staff of talented, tried-and-true Westerners, natives and transplants alike, that’s what we want you to feel when you read the print magazine. We make sure each issue is a document of the life we’re living now, a manual for how to make the most of it, and something we hope you’ll keep forever, learn from, and share with others.

You see, magazines are magical things, tactile compendiums of inspiring ideas and stunning photography that stand the test of time—and that arrive in your mailbox on a regular basis, delivering surprise, delight, and inspiration. At Sunset the editors, writers, photographers, and contributors spend every waking hour exploring the forests, high deserts, coasts, beaches, cities, and small towns in search of the stories, ideas, and people to help you live your best life in the West. Whether you’re looking for micro-seasonal gardening tips for your home state, recipes from top chefs from Seattle to Santa Barbara to Santa Fe, home tours and remodeling hacks, travel tips on undiscovered bohemian getaways, or the next great wine region, we’ve got you covered. And if you want to simply flip through the pages and dream, that’s just fine, too. 

Plus, every subscriber gets a free digital edition of the 800-page bible of all things horticultural, the iconic Sunset Western Gardening Book.

—Hugh Garvey, editor-in-chief

One Year of Sunset Magazine, $24.95