THE ROGUE GARDEN: Brent’s Test Kitchen
Hey! All you hoity toity landscape designers—this blog’s for you!
When my professional landscape design friends come to my home garden for the first time, they are usually thrown off balance by what they see: there are pots and containers everywhere. I constantly rescue or buy plants to try out in our pots to show how they work together in the landscape and also to see how a plant performs in a container versus the ground.
While my garden is a “test kitchen”, it serves as inspiration for Eye of the Day as well as for the genetic sequence I received from my Portuguese great grandfather. He was a truck farmer who indentured himself in 1868 to the Campbell Estate in Hawaii to grow sugarcane. I love putting my hands in the dirt.
My garden at home has helped us at Eye of the Day in many ways. We have learned that French Anduze pottery must be sealed or the glazing starts to fall off almost immediately. So, we tell everyone that if you purchase French Anduze, you must have it sealed to protect the glazing.
Something that every design professional should know about is how to properly plant pots and especially large pots. Pots that have diameters larger than 30” usually have plant material that starts big or will grow large due to the space for more root ball. But after a period of years and sometime climate conditions, a large plant needs to be removed from its container and trimmed and replaced. By replicating these situations in my own garden, I have formulated successful service practices for performing operations which allow clients to benefit by getting the most from their purchase of our products.
Also in my garden, there are odd experimental items like “vertical wall” planters and terra cotta shelf units for the patio. 25 years of business has resulted in a new product. Whether damaged in the container coming from Italy or through rough handling here at Eye of the Day, we take the broken pieces of pottery and produce Tumbled Terra Cotta.
Yes, my garden at home looks like a madman’s landscape but, I love it and I love spending time in this intimate setting surrounded by the products, plants and ideas that fuel my life.
Let me know if you’d like to visit.
Brent, the Rogue Gardener