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Tuscan Landscape Gardening Ideas

Hi Friends!
I love reading and learning about gardening, planning the garden, plantings, and style! Today we're delving into A Tuscan Landscape.
The Tuscan style of landscape melds traditional plantings like lavender, rosemary, and Italian cypress with the warm colors of Terracotta urns, natural stone and bold flowers that stand out against the bright sunshine.

  • Use the resources you have - Stone and other materials are heavy to transport, so designing with the stone and materials you have on site can save money and energy.
  • Select local stone - In a Tuscan landscape, the colors are more important than the specific types of stone. Any stone that is beige, buff, rusty-orange or warm brown will fit the theme.
  • Choose native plants - Your region's natives will be well-adapted to your growing zone and can be artfully used within any style of landscape.
  • Use drip irrigation rather than sprinklers - The output of drip irrigation is measured in gallons per hour, while the output of a sprinkler system is measured in gallons per minute. Drip Irrigation puts water exactly where it's needed most.
  • Dos:

        Do choose traditional Tuscan garden plants like olive trees, bay trees, old knobbly grape vines, and Mediterranean herbs such as lavender, rosemary and sage. These plants bring the sensory experience of Tuscany to your garden with their fragrances and usefulness in the kitchen.
        Do feel free to modernize the Tuscan theme with ornamental grasses. Grasses add a bold, flowing element and help soften the naturalistic stone outcroppings traditional in Tuscan design,.    Do choose warm colors of stone and patio materials. Decomposed granite, Santa Barbara cobble, and gold granite are a few good choices, but you can select whatever stone is available locally as long as the color feels warm rather than gray.
        Do amend new planting beds with two inches of compost to give plants a good start. Even drought-tolerant plants like Tuscan herbs benefit from compost and regular water when first planted.

    Don'ts:

        Don't select pale or pastel colors like baby pink. These tones look washed-out under the hot midday sun. Brighter colors like red, orange, hot pink or yellow create a stronger contrast with the flower colors and silvery foliage of traditional Tuscan plants.
        Don't go overboard on the succulents. While succulents are both beautiful and sustainable, they don't bring to mind the agrarian roots of the Tuscan planting style, so should be used sparingly if at all.
        Don't use gray gravel, concrete or rock. Slate and other types of blue-gray stone can be successful in other types of garden, but the Tuscan style is all about warm earth tones.
        Don't be afraid to exchange your water-hogging lawn for a colorful Mediterranean-inspired landscape. An established landscape uses half as much water as a lawn, and takes so much less care. Plus creating garden rooms or different environments makes your space more versatile and fun to use. An outdoor room adds an element of nature to any home!
A Link for photos of Tuscan Plantings: on eHow.com

Some plants for the Tuscan Garden below:
  •  Traditional Tuscan plants:
    Italian cypress (Cupressus sempervirens)
    Bay (Laurus nobilis)
    Olive (Olea europaea)
    Fig (Ficus carica)
    Citrus (Citrus spp.)
    Grape vine (Vitus vinifera)
    Lavender (Lavendula spp. and cvs.)
    Rosemary (Rosmarinus officianalis)
    Thyme (Thymus spp.)

    Ornamental grasses:
    Lindheimer's muhly grass (Muhlenbergia lindheimeri)
    Deer grass (Muhlenbergia rigens)
    Moor grass (Sesleria spp.)

    Other recommended plants:
    Mediterranean Fan Palm (Chamaerops humilis)
    Pearl bluebush (Maireana sedifolia)
    Jerusalem sage (Phlomis fruticosa)
    Cleveland sage (Salvia clevelandii)
    Bee's bliss sage (Salvia 'Bee's Bliss')
    White sage (Salvia apiana)
Here is a good link for more Tuscan Design Ideas, A Tuscan Landscape Design brings Tuscany to your home. 

    I hope you take a look into photos of some Tuscan Gardens. I don't have any to show you at this time, but since my taste of our outdoor room will be Tuscan, I plan to have some soon!http://www.lushome.com/beautiful-landscaping-ideas-backyard-designs-spanish-italian-styles/95986
    Enjoy,

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