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Fresh Design

Articles: Fresh Design

At the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena, Nancy Goslee Power placed two Platanus mexicana trees in the walkway, as a gateway to the museum, forcing visitors to walk around or between them. Photograph by Marcia Lee

Nancy Goslee Power talks about inspiration in garden design—where it comes from and how it gets passed on.

We all love to be surprised—in life, in love, and even in gardens. The gardens we love most are never boring. They speak to us, draw us in, and comfort us.

Does that just happen? Of course not. It’s up to the garden designer to lay out the plan, set the tone, and be guided by inspiration to complete the vision. Each project is unique. So where do garden designers find fresh ideas?

For Los Angeles-based garden designer Nancy Goslee Power, it all begins with what she knows. As she puts it, “If you’re creative, you borrow from what you know and then do something new.” Her favorite gardens are those that include what she calls a “ twist”—an innovative solution to a traditional problem. Whether subtle or obvious, the result can be dramatic.

It’s all a matter of balance and of learning wha...


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