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This is my first blog from our fabulous time at the annual Garden Bloggers Fling. This year it returned to Austin where it began 10 years ago. I have been joining other bloggers for 5 years now and this was Shawn’s 4th time. It is the highlight of our year. Meeting up with fellow garden bloggers, plant geeks and super cool folks. It is like going to camp each year and reconnecting with your buddies. Lori Daul is an Austin landscaper and garden designer I met a couple of years ago. She was in the middle of her busiest season so did not have the time to get her garden ready for 2 bus loads of Flingers! She did invite Cindy of the blog My Corner of Katy and Shawn and I to come by on our way home. 20180507_104250 (2)We brought breakfast tacos from a place Lori recommended and they were yum! Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ @ 11500Manchaca Rd. Austin TX 78748. When you first drive up to Lori’s it is hard to see the house. Every patch of dirt is planted with hardy thriving plants. It is a mix of trees, shrubs, perennials and annuals.

I love all the little sedums and low growing plants happily planted in gravel. The mix of agave with poppy’s made me smile with delight! Austin has elevation changes, less rainfall and better drainage than we have in Houston. They can grow more dry garden plants which I am fond of being originally from Southern California.20180507_112755 (3)As you step up the walk your eyes are entertained and you are slowed down so you can enjoy the beauty of nature. I much prefer this to a front lawn which I imagine was here when she bought the house. 20180507_112854-2.jpgPoppy’s are one of my favorite flowers. I have yet to get them grow in our garden but I try every year. 20180507_112807 (2)The walk ways softened with plants that are allowed to trail over. I love this effect and it complements the hardscape perfectly.

Before we tour the back garden we sit in the shade of her covered porch to enjoy our tacos. From the porch you can see the newest project, remodeling a studio space. 20180507_103427 (2)Lori’s back garden is full of drifts, water-features and vignettes. Something to catch your eye everywhere you look. The first thing I noticed was the big fish pond. 20180507_103818 (2)This garden is designed to welcome, water and feed wildlife. There are several water-features through out the space. This is a great idea because different birds, animals and insects prefer water to be convenient to there specific needs. For a great fact sheet click here > Water for Wildlife: Bird Baths and Backyard Ponds

20180507_103542 (2)20180507_112603 (2)20180507_103957 (2)I really love all the blue accents in Lori’s garden. Especially the blue fence which ties it all together. The garden feels very private in-spite of being the back yard of a tract home. 20180507_104407 (2)The art pieces nestled here and there add to the peaceful feeling that comes over you while you are in this lovely visually soothing space.

Shawn enjoyed the old swing that has become a bench. It is a perfect place to view the garden from another perspective. I love Lori’s creativity, repurposing found and used items and materials, giving them a new life. As I look at this photo I notice Shawn with his blue jacket fit right in!20180507_103641 (2) The lawn is more of a path that helps you wander through the garden, giving it a sense of being larger than it actually is. 20180507_103441 (2) Not all of the art evokes a sense of peace but does speak to Lori’s sense of play and humor! YIKES! Ha ha : )20180507_112650 (2) We have all seen bottle trees. This is my first with bottles on an actual tree. I love the way they catch your eye and get you to look up. The blue is pretty with the sun showing through. 20180507_105526 (2) This was in early May but I could tell this garden has something beautiful to see through out the year. I like mirrors in gardens as a way to draw your eye and lighten up a dark spot. 20180507_103906 (2) Here we have a beautiful Agave ovatifolia “Whale’s Tongue Agave”  as a focal point. I love the variety of flowers in this large curving bed. The Orange daylilies really pop. Since painting our house gray, gray foliage and orange flowers have been my latest crush! 20180507_103919 (2)This fun collection of pots caught my eye right away. I like that she kept the color palate to blue and gray.  We just planted Orange Day Lilies, Tawny ‘Ditch Lily’ that we saw growing wild last summer in the country roads outside of Boston. I found them super cheap on Etsy. 20180507_103455 (2)Notice how neatly she tied off the winter bulbs.20180507_104009 (2)And I love these seed heads catching the light and looking so elegant.20180507_103618 (2)

Finally we had to get on the road back to Houston. I do hope to come visit again and see how things have changed with the season.  Lori thank you so much for our private tour of your beautiful garden.

If you would like to get in touch with Lori Daul and see about her transforming your garden you can contact her @  loridauldesign@gmail.com

Happy Gardening!