GBDW – Decks, Porches, and Patios Wrap-Up

– Posted in: Garden Design

Side porch May 10 08When I was planning the construction of my new home, having a large porch was on my must-have list. It seemed like such a great place to have to hang out on rainy days, and maybe to do some writing during nice weather. Sounds fine in theory, but it hasn’t quite worked out that way. For a good part of the growing season, almost all of the available floor and sitting space is covered with flats of seedlings, container plantings, and gardening tools. I’ve finally accepted that what I have is not so much a wrap-around porch as a wrap-around garden shed/cold frame. Oh, well – it’s still a great space to have.

Porch steps May 30 08Many of you are equally fond of your outdoor living spaces and made the time to share your thoughts and photos this month. Below is a run-down of the posts I know about, in no particular order. If I missed you, or if you want to put up a related post later on, please leave a comment below so we can find you. Thanks to all!

Garden Bloggers’ Design Workshop – Decks, Porches, and Patios (Nan at Gardening Gone Wild): Kick-off post for this month’s topic.

Outdoor Kitchens and Dining Areas (Michelle of Derviss Design): If you’re looking for inspiring ideas for the outdoor space of your dreams, you need to check out Michelle’s gallery of gorgeous photos.

My Craftsman/Cottage Home (Anna at Flowergardengirl’s Blog): Three large porches form an integral part of the design of Anna’s new North Carolina home.

Deck Envy (Jim at Art of Gardening): So often, a deck seems like an afterthought – a space simply stuck on to a house without much thought about how it will really be used. Jim’s post shows how a well-planned deck can instead be an integral part of a home and provide ample opportunities for dining, relaxing, entertaining, and planting, too. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to consult with some Hardscaping Companies to better understand how you could tackle the task.

Garden Bloggers Design Workshop – Under the Deck (Frances at Faire Garden): True gardeners know how to make the most of every available inch of possible growing space. See how Frances has turned the normally-unused area under a deck and stairs into a charming shade garden and useful storage space.

A Patio in an Alleyway: A Luscious Urban Garden in Tel Aviv (Fran at Gardening Gone Wild): One trait most gardeners share is the desire for more planting room. But the most dedicated of us can manage to create and nuture a garden even in the smallest of spaces. Read about Fran’s wonderful find on her recent trip to Israel.

Introducing Our Patio (Veg Plotting): Read about the planning process for VP’s new patio and view the elegant results at Veg Plotting (no, it’s not just about veggies!).

My Favorite Part of the Garden (Heather at Heather’s Garden): Not satisfied with just one patio (read more about the original one at The Beginning), Heather created another outdoor seating area on the site of a now-gone gazebo. Now, if only she could enjoy her beautiful yard in peace and quiet!

Design Workshop Decks, Patios and Porches (Tina at In the Garden): Tina discusses some design challenges that she’s faced with her deck and explains how she solved them. If you need to create a sense of privacy in your existing outdoor living space, or if you need to keep kids or critters either on or off your deck, check out her ideas.

Nancy J. Ondra
Nan gardens on 4 acres in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. In the firm belief that every garden ought to have a pretentious-sounding (or at least pretentious-looking) name, she refers to her home grounds as "Hayefield." There, she experiments with a wide variety of plants and planting styles, from cottage gardens and color-based borders to managed meadows, naturalistic plantings, and veggies--all under the watchful eyes of her two pet alpacas, Daniel and Duncan.
Nancy J. Ondra

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Gail June 30, 2008, 4:26 pm

Would it be cheating to show my porch post from last month! I can’t wait to pop around and see all the posts.


Not cheating at all! Here’s a direct link to The View from the Porch. Thanks for the reminder, Gail!

fran sorin June 30, 2008, 5:01 pm


I know first hand how charming your front porch is. I’ve always dreamt of having a structure like that. Just because you’ve chosen to use it for other things doesn’t take away from the beauty that it adds to your home! Thanks for doing such a great job on this topic this month. Fran

Thanks, Fran. I do try to keep the front porch reasonably passable for visitors. And fortunately the railings hide most of the other untidiness from the outside!

Annie in Austin July 1, 2008, 1:09 am

So much for resolutions to be on time! I wanted to join in this month, Nan, but just finished my post – guess it’s already July 1st in both PA and TX. Can I still sneak in?

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

My Patio Post

Of course you can, Annie! Many thanks for your contribution.

Tina Ramsey July 3, 2008, 11:26 pm

Wow! I can’t believe all those plants-a gardener’s nirvana!

You know how it is, Tina: When you growing stuff from seed, it’s all too easy to sow way more than you really need, and it doesn’t take much more time to pot up 30 instead of the three or six.

ryan November 2, 2009, 3:39 am

People posted about some nice decks and patios. I wish I knew how to build decks and work with wood. A while back I posted about a flagstone patio made of Three Rivers, one of the more interesting flagstones around, maybe worth adding to the list.

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