A trio of designers’ natural autumnal decorating tips

Fall floral arrangements by Bloom by Anuschka at Union Station in Denver, Colorado

Photo: Helen H. Richardson of The Denver Post

Autumn is one of nature’s most dramatic seasons. Rather than purchasing plastic decorations probably made in China, why not opt for the real thing: sunflowers, pumpkins, pinecones, dried grasses and such.
Three designers known for their appreciation of the natural world offer tips and twists on fall decorations in my article published in The Denver Post. Their ideas are easy to execute and will lend an elegant and unexpected beauty to your autumn. And several of the ideas will take you into Thanksgiving and even the winter holidays.
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“La Musidora” musical rocking chairs rock outdoor furniture

 

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Photo Courtesy of Denver Art Museum: Artists Ignacio Cadena and Héctor Esrawe

You’ll never look at lawn chairs the same again once you get a glimpse at “La Musidora,” a kinetic design installation outside Denver Art Museum. Created by a famous pair of Mexican designers, the musical rocking chairs feature traditional weaving by Mexican artisans. What’s more, the chairs make music! Each includes a chime activated when the chairs rock. “La Musidora” allows people to sit face-to-face, thanks to a traditional Mexican chair design.

Read more about “La Musidora” at this link to Art & Object.
Rock on!

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Indoor composting: easier (and less messy) than you think

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Photo: RJ Sangosti of The Denver Post

If Jack Frost and Old Man Winter interfere with your composting, considering indoor composting with the same red wiggler worms that do the dirty work outdoors. Known as vermicomposting, this method isn’t as messy as you think. And, no, the worms don’t escape. They want to stay because they’re warm and well fed. And they’re creating worm castings–some of the richest growing material on the planet.
I reported on vermicomposting for The Denver Post, and my article includes everything you need to know about indoor composting: step-by-step instructions and even a helpful video.
When winter turns your compost pile into a Popsicle, vermicomposting allows you to continue using kitchen scraps and other compostable materials rather than trashing them in the landfill. Price worm castings, and you’ll quickly see the value of vermicomposting. The end result makes your efforts worthwhile not only for the planet, but for your own garden or houseplants.
Have a look here:

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Transition outdoor living space from summer to fall and winter

Birdsall & Co home and garden shop reopens in Englewood, Colorado.

Photo: Helen H. Richardson of The Denver Post

Autumn is upon us, with summer a memory and Old Man Winter not far away. Now is a perfect time to spruce up the garden for fall and beyond. We’ll likely have plenty of days to enjoy outdoor living, and a few adjustments will make your garden, patio or porch more appealing and more comfortable.

In my article for The Denver Post, professional designers share their expert tips. And there’s a beautiful slide show that might spark your creativity, too.

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Inviting outdoor plants to overwinter indoors yields benefits

Geraniums Ireland

Zonal geraniums, one of many outdoor plants that overwinter well indoors.

Yes, cleaning up, cutting back, washing up and hauling in outdoor plants to overwinter indoors requires work. But the benefits of an indoor garden during winter months outweigh the hassles.
Overwintering plants not only grows your plant collection, the plants also improve the air in your home. When shut up during winter months, off-gasses accumulate, but since plants breathe carbon monoxide and exhale fresh oxygen, plants and people make perfect roommates.
Many scientific studies now demonstrate the healing properties plants bestow upon people. There’s a reason why we bring fresh flowers and green plants to people in the hospital!
Now’s the time to invite those favorite plants indoors to overwinter by a sunny window. Zonal geraniums, some begonias, succulents and cacti, tropical plants and herbs all will enjoy the winter months indoors. You’ll satisfy your garden jones by caring for living plants during the dead of winter. Some will provide you flowers and culinary herbs. And when spring rolls around again, you just reintroduce the plants gradually outdoors again. Voila!
My article published in The Denver Post includes lots of how-to tips from professional landscape designers. Learn more about overwintering plants at this link.

 

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Celebrate autumn with fall container gardens

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The end of summer doesn’t necessarily mean the end of container gardens. You can swap out leggy, tired plants and pop in a few fresh plantings or replant fall containers entirely for a fresh autumnal look that will last. If you live in a climate with cold winters, many plants will even tolerate a frost.

My article published by The Denver Post includes lots of tips from landscape designers who specialize in fall container gardens. You may read my article at this link.

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Pansies and violas perfect for spring or fall

PANSIES

Photo from Joe Amon of The Denver Post

The wonderful thing about pansies and violas is that they’re perfect plants either for early spring or for autumn. Pansies–many of which are appreciated for their little flower faces–can even weather a winter storm and come out smiling, so they’re ideal plants to perk up autumn containers, borders or beds.
And remember, pansies are edible, too. As long as you’re growing organically, you may add blossoms to salads, deserts or as a garnish.
My article published in The Denver Post has plenty of pansy tips from professional growers.

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