Small-Scale Courtyard Garden Beauty from Page Duke Landscape Architects

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It’s a trademark in New Orleans: the antebellum house with wrought-iron balconies, stately pillars and colorful shutters against clean white exteriors…and a city property that often has very little “green space” to use for a suitable garden. So the question becomes how to make a compact area as beautiful as the home it surrounds: the answer in this case comes from Page|Duke Landscape Architects. Step inside the front gate and you’ve entered a separate world of calm, placid green, mature trees, and flowering shrubs. Cobblestones sweep in a grand semicircle; geometric patterns in stone lead you around the house and through the meandering space, through touches of green everywhere — here, in vines climbing a wall; there, in pots of bachelor buttons, deep green ivy, and miniature evergreens.

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Amble through tiny “rooms” into which the yard is divided. Sit on a green bench, fronted by lawn and stepping-stones. Is that water you hear? Yes, it is, in a fountain gushing over rock to a round, stone-edged pond and surrounded by lush palms and ferns. Pause for some conversation in another sitting area, hedged in for privacy; enjoy alfresco tea or lunch at an ornate table and wrought-iron chairs within a brick-walled arbor, or linger until twilight with the light of a lantern to make the night magic. This garden is the perfect combination of exuberance and restraint, done up in a hundred shades of green that provide a jewel-like setting for the home and a constant sweet oasis in the midst of the city.

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Written by Janet Butler

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Janet W. Butler is a freelance writer, editor, and editorial consultant by day and a “small soprano” by night. An RWA Golden Heart Winner, she is the author of the inspirational romance From the Ashes (“the best little book no one’s ever heard of”), published by SANDS Publishing in 2001; and a romantic suspense, Voice of Innocence, from Desert Breeze Publishing. She is a Chicago native transplanted to northeast Indiana, where she lives with her husband, daughter, and Cassandra “Trouble” Butler, S.R.C. (Spoiled Rotten Cat).