Need Help?

Allan designs and plants flowering gardens in Montreal, Zone 5 [USDA Zone 4] .

See website, design work and favorite flowering plants at

Consultation and coaching for do-it-yourselfers is provided. Occasional emailed questions are welcome and answered free of charge. Oui, je parle francais.

See my work on Pinterest at Garden Guru Montreal

Entries in Buel Steelman (1)


A Front Yard Garden

Image courtesy of Mosaic Garden Design and Construction, Eugene, Oregon.

The replacement of lawns with gardens is a topic that I have written about in the past. Although I do not expect that there will ever be a large-scale movement to convert all lawns into flowerbeds, it is encouraging to discover that some homeowners have begun that process. It is still too early to predict how far this trend will spread. Recently I discovered appropriate images, posted above and below, that illustrate this topic. First, a recap:-

On January 27, 2010, in a review of The American Meadow Garden by John Greenlee, I wrote that “Neat green lawns are becoming an albatross and an anachronism. Evolving lifestyles, shrinking natural resources, and a deepening concern about the chemicals that pollute our water table are causing some horticulturalists to re evaluate the role that lawns play in the quality of our life”.

Another posting, titled Good Bye Lawn, Hello Outdoor Living Space, dated September 30, 2009, preceded the above article. In that post, I wrote, “There has been a lot of discussion over the last few years about the declining need for a green lawn in today’s landscapes. This debate has been fueled not only by the desire to conserve water but also by the realization that changing lifestyles result in lawns that remain unused. This debate is also accompanied by the shrinkage of free time needed to care for lawns and by the toxic effect of chemicals necessary to maintain them………for some, the ….yard has become an anachronism and its maintenance a burden”. 

Image courtesy of Mosaic Garden Design and Construction, Eugene, Oregon.

The two photos that appear here, a close up and a long shot of the same home exterior, demonstrate how a front yard garden can be used to landscape a home. These images of a mixed garden demonstrate how a lawnless landscape complements and enhances a house. In this installation, the four seasons bring continuously changing visual interest. Best of all, there is no lawn to feed, water or mow.

The attractive and effective use of a garden to fill a front yard is the creation of Rebecca Samms and Buel Steelman, of Mosaic Gardens, in Eugene Oregon. They are responsible for its design, construction, and planting. North Carolina landscape architect Pam Kersting of GardenDesigns+more  featured the work of this talented duo in her latest posting titled “Lose the lawn”. I am happy to share this discovery with my readers.