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Making a Front Yard into a Welcoming Entry Garden

Updated: Feb 17, 2019

The Welcoming Garden: Designing Your Own Front Garden, by Gordon Hayward

There are some books that stick with me, and The Welcoming Garden: Designing Your Own Front Garden is one of them. Author Gordon Hayward does not intend to design your garden for you. Instead, he challenges readers to analyze the photos and illustrations to "engage your imagination." Rewriting the narrative of your front yard into an entry garden can be daunting, and for some, might mean hiring a professional designer. But for those inspired do-it-yourselfers, this book could point you in the right direction.

This image was our sad little house before we started working on the front yard, before we painted, and before we corrected so many wrongs of previous owners. It is difficult for me to believe why a front walkway to the street below was never installed in the 60 plus years people have lived here. The foundation planting was minimal with shrubs that would grow too high and cover the windows. So little curb appeal ta boot!

We painted, added the sidewalk, a seat wall to our pétanque court that replaced an ancient lawn, a fountain (that the birds love), native plants, and LED night lighting to welcome guests. It is a modest home, but now people know how to find the front door in a comfortable way. The plants have now grown in, and gophers have already decimated many of them. It is time to refresh the plants, and continue our ever moving target of a perfect front yard (hint: there's no such thing). And no, the sign for the alarm company is no longer there!

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