When builder Jim Daniels designed his Montgomery home back in 2007, he definitely knew the look he was after: old world elegance resembling a taste of Tuscany.
April 2011 Issue
A Cincinnati homeowner creates the waterfall of his dreams — with the help of his favorite landscaper.
The landscape, however, was an open canvas.
“The location is quiet and secluded,” Daniels says, “I just wanted everything to look nice, but not overdone.”
He turned to trusted friend Jim Seiler, owner of Seiler’s Landscaping in Cincinnati, for advice. The resulting game plan: work in layers, beginning with the driveway, sidewalk and patio.
“The design of these elements determine the placement of plants and trees,” Seiler says.
“I’m not a fan of gardens cluttered with perennials,” he adds. “Everything should flow like a beautiful song.”
And be as maintenance-free as possible. To accomplish this goal, Seiler chose the clean lines of willowy Cleveland select pear and skyline locust trees, which also soften the look but do not overwhelm the house. The Japanese maple between them adds a shot of crimson.
Happily, at this time of year, winter seems like a distant memory. But, Seiler advises, even though the calendar may say summer’s just around the corner, homeowners need to think about what their yard looks like 365 days a year. A liberal use of evergreens adds instant year-round color to deciduous treescapes.
“I plant them in odd-numbered groups of three, because that number adds visual interest,” he says. “Anything less looks silly.”
Seiler’s favorites include the dwarf blue spruce — the color of which he compares to “the cobalt blue of Hawaii’s oceans” — gold mop cypress and blue princess holly.
“Plant these varieties,” he says, “and you’ll instantly have a landscape.”
Seiler topped off his design with white and pink begonias and red geraniums — a look he calls “subtle, upscale and very thoughtful.”