It’s an honor to present yet another gardener’s resource, put to print by landscaper designer Jan Johnsen. Whether you have a small patio garden or expansive acreage, you’ll find lots of inspiration in her brand-new book, GARDENTOPIA: Design Basics for Creating Beautiful Outdoor Spaces.*
Jan’s writing style is breezy, and her illustrations are dreamy. But make no mistake: This book is chock-full of substantial, ingenious ideas that come from years of accumulated knowledge and experience.
From visualizing the finished garden, to gathering materials and getting down to work, Jan covers beautifully every facet of what it means to create an outdoor oasis. As with her previous books, she carefully lays the groundwork for her readers’ success, intertwining creative inspiration with practical guidance.
Eye-catching color combinations + elevated containers = visual exclamation points
Dream about your very own Garden of Eden, as you flip through the pages of this book. I guarantee you’ll get a better sense of what you want your garden space to look like, and be. Allow your mind and feet to wander, Jan suggests; in turn, your garden will “reveal itself in stages, hiding and offering up its delights in turn.” Over time, visitors (humans, pollinators, songbirds, etc.) will want to join you. Your garden will become your sanctuary, rewarding you with countless seasons of sensory pleasures.
I highly recommend GARDENTOPIA. It’s for novice gardeners and longtime landscapers alike. It’s pretty enough to be a coffee table decoration, but I have a feeling it won’t be long before my copy is dog-eared, highlighted, and smudged with dirt! Matter of fact, I just ordered it as a gift for a new homeowner, who’s just now developing an interest in outdoor spaces. I know already that, like me, he’ll refer to it often, as he infuses his own landscaping (and life) style with Jan’s practical advice.
*I first came to know about Jan Johnsen when I discovered her first book, HEAVEN IS A GARDEN, which I loved. To read my review of Jan Johnsen’s second book, click here: The Spirit of Stone: 101 Practical & Creative Stonescaping Ideas for Your Garden.)