Green Architecture

What is green architecture? I am sure that it can be many different things depending on who you are talking to. For me, it is the design direction I want to take at Kilbourne Grove.

When I was searching for a name for my blog, I thought about what I wanted my blog to say about my garden.  I want my garden to be formal, but formal in a green way, not with bedding out plants like Versailles.  I had seen the words Green Theatre somewhere and I liked how it sounded.

Not my garden (I wish), but a lovely one I visited for Doors Open. This is the direction that I would like my garden to take, notice there are no flowers, (I do think that he beds out annuals at the bottom, but luckily I have never seen it.

After I had been publishing my blog for a month, I was bored at work one day and I decided to google the phrase “Green Theatre”.  It can up with this on page 17,  the Encyclopedia Britannica definition.  Green Theatre is “planting, usually of evergreens, designed to provide accommodation for outdoor theatrics.”

The same lovely garden at Doors Open. Love the clipped cedar buttresses. OK, there might be a few too many cement pieces, but I can edit that, no problem!

Good to know that there is a future for Kilbourne Grove, I can rent it out to the Owen Sound Little Theatre.


26 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    PatioPatch said,

    “Green is the prime color of the world, and that from which its loveliness arises.” Pedro Calderon de la Barca.
    It’s always interesting to read about gardens in progress and the inspiration behind them. Yours is no exception – look forward to lots of posts as you develop the formality of KG


  2. 3

    thevioletfern66 said,

    I so admire green architecture but would never have the patience and strict discipline – power to you! At the least I wish I had a green fence instead of (gasp) chainlink. Well, it’s green in the summer with grapevines, anyway. I can’t wait to see your avenue mature. Your garden has theatrics already!

  3. 5

    Laurrie said,

    I do like to read about what drives a garden’s design… why it looks the way it does, not just what flowers are in it. I admire your goals and the way you’re implementing an entire special look and feel with shrubs and trees. I love watching the drama in your green theater as the design unfolds!

  4. 7

    Valerie said,

    I am sure that your vision will take time as formal gardens are not created overnight. It takes years of pruning and maintaining the bones of the garden into your vision. It should have your personality interwoven into the structure though. It will be fun to watch the changes.

    • 8

      Ah, time, and patience, the time I (hopefully) have, the patience is another thing. It is much easier to take the time, when you are not living somewhere full time, you don’t have to look at it every day and wish for it to hurry up!

  5. 9

    Edith Hope said,

    Dearest D, As you may imagine, I am entirely at one with the Doors Open garden which you feature here and can see its influence on your vision for Kilbourne Grove. If I were to begin again, I should pare everything down considerably and have a totally green garden with just a few carefully placed, incredibly beautiful objects.

    For further inspiration, if you have not read it already, I suggest Vivian Russell’s book ‘Edith Wharton’s Italian Gardens’.

    • 10

      Edith, a totally green garden sounds so beautiful. I keep trying not to buy flowering plants, but it is hopeless. I am at least hoping that ‘garden rooms’ will give me some calmness between the chaos.
      I actually have not read that book, (how could that happen, lol), I shall have to check it out.

  6. 11

    chen said,

    This may mean you will be venturing into conifers more and more, and soon…. I will see you at the ‘Coniferlic’ anonymous. I supposed any flowering plants or coloured conifers that you may have in your theatre are mere abstractions of theatre actors and audience…. Couldn’t wait to see your design maturing.

  7. 13

    Rosie said,

    Green of all different shades! I remember a famous gardener called Geoff Hamilton who had amongst his many gardens a green one with no flowers – or if there were flowers they were not the “leading cast” . I thought all those years ago that it was weird as all I looked for were flowers in a garden – how wrong I was! and after many years I’ve come around to seeing such beauty in gardens like Doors Open.

    How much buxus have you got?

    • 14

      Rosie, I think that your taste changes and develops over your lifetime. I used to love very bright colours (I still do), but now I seem to prefer them more muted. When I put in my Kitchen Garden, I thought that would be the place I would keep the bright flowers, a la Sarah Raven.
      I only have 14 buxus, but 2 years ago, snow broke off some of the tips. In the spring, I just stuck them in the ground to see what would happen. At least half of the rooted, so now I am going to try rooting some from cuttings, I feel the need for a buxus hedge coming on.

  8. 15

    Melissa said,

    As soon as I saw the photos, I thought”you and Edith are on the same wave length!” The longer I am a designer, the more appreciation I have for gardens where the predominant theme is shades of green with different textures, shapes and sizes, such as this one you’ve featured. Color can only carry a garden so far. And evergreen trees and shrubs are a great way to provide the necessary “bones” or structure so crucial for a garden to look good year-round.

    • 16

      I noticed, the same thing with being a floral designer. When I first started, I wanted bright, multicoloured bouquets, now I love monochromatic instead. I can see myself, removing the flowering plants as the “green” matures.

  9. 17

    teza said,

    I see the future of KG within these photographs! Of course, I have not space, patience, did I mention space for something like this but know that you will one day have a presentation to rival this one. Besides, I’m far to messy a gardener for structure such as this…. for me its one of you and you, and Sweet jesus, chartreuse and cobalt blue, maybe even three of you. LOL!

    • 18

      Space is HUGE! If I did not have the space, I do not know if I would have the discipline to try this, there is always another plant calling my name. But, I can divide my garden up and have ‘green’ rooms, and flowery rooms. When are you coming up to see your room?

  10. 19

    Very interesting post! I had wondered where the term “Green Theatre” had come from. The pictures you posted are beautiful, I agree there is a tad too much concrete (for my liking) in the 2nd picture. I love concrete orbs though, so maybe a few could come here, it would solve 2 problems at once lol.

    • 20

      Rebecca, the owner casts his own concrete, that is why they are all the same. You can see them all over his garden. I wish he would give a few of them to me as well.

  11. 21

    Racquel said,

    Evergreen backdrops really add alot of structure to the garden especially in the fall & winter when the blooms are gone. 🙂

  12. 23

    miss m said,

    Oh boy, long time no read ! There was so much to catch up on ! Although I could go on, I’ll keep it short and say I LOVE the foxtail lily, Ian did a smashing job on those pillars and and what’s to say about your terrace but GORGEOUS !

    This has got to be the “More Estate”. I recognize it from last year’s post. Talk about structure. What great design. Perfect inspiration for KG. (Mr. More better watch out !)

  13. 25

    Sandra Jonas said,

    Beautiful and classic choice to aspire to for your garden. Perfect year round. Great clean lines but way to much concrete!!!

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