It is January, but we can still enjoy entertaining in our garden, which is one of the reasons we love New Orleans! Pam and Mike Thompson have a spectacular rooftop garden at the old LaSalle School, where I actually attended kindergarten through sixth grade! To see it now, with its renovation by Jim McPhaille, is awe-inspiring. Pam created her outdoor room as an extension of their living room, so guests can wander inside and out. She began by covering the whole area with a high-grade AstroTurf and then added focal points, including a fabulous fountain flanked with by a screen of Japanese blueberry and a table with a variety of succulents in the center, complete with comfortable chairs and cushions. Along another wall, there’s a long sofa with striped accent pillows creating another conversation area. At night, lighting adds a dramatic effect!
Patricia and Vernon Brinson entertain in their garden all year long and they’ve created several rooms that create different experiences for guests. One is by the pool looking back at the house with a colorful wild rose climbing dramatically on their outdoor room. The other is right outside of their dining room, which has doors that open out into the area. Focal points here are fabulous antique olive jars that Patricia got at Antiques de Provence. Tables are set up for a cocktail buffet with my single Celebration vases filled with lilies, roses and delphinium. Patricia had the olive jars planted with fruit trees and planted white snapdragons in her parterre garden.
I hope you’ll start to look at your garden in a new way! There are so many great local landscape companies that can help you!