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Lambert Creates a French Countryside-Inspired Entry Garden for Kips Bay Decorator Show House Dallas

The Loire Valley, Vine-Covered Structures, and Cloud-Form Boxwoods

photography Stephen Karlisch

Overview for the Entry Gardens

Lambert designed the front gardens to focus on the idea of a homeowners’ daily ritual of returning home from city life to the authentic sights and sounds of the Loire Valley in the French countryside. To start, Moore Tree Company removed struggling, overgrown trees that obscured views of the home. To highlight the architecture, the landscape at the entry  was kept low and minimal, primarily composed of cloud-form boxwoods, ground cover, low plantings, and gravel. The secondary driveway spur that goes to the left of the home has been enhanced by the placement of a wood-and-steel pergola that mimics and reinforces the flat arch over the home’s doorway and recalls similar elements in Monet’s garden and the vine-covered structures found at Château de Villandry in the Loire Valley. Lambert’s new hyacinth-bean vine-covered structure provides a leafy green tunnel that creates a shady reprieve and turns the driveway axis into a long vista, terminating with a view of an antique French limestone cartouche, backed by a holly screen wall.

The Vintner’s Meadow, an axial garden to the right side of the parking court, counterbalances the tunnel on the left and pays homage to the vineyards of the Loire Valley region. It’s defined by the crisp edges of two crescent-shaped sculptural berms that have been planted with meadow-like species, punctuated by a scattering of fall-blooming bulbs. A clipped holly hedge is a strong juxtaposition to the meadow plantings in the foreground and defines a circular lawn panel. A bosque of four pleached Trident maples, under-planted with drifts of cloud-form boxwoods, anchors the four corners of the auto court, reinforces the sense of space, and artfully frames one’s view of the château-style home’s entry. The garden’s overall character is enhanced by handcrafted painted mahogany planter boxes and a custom bench by Buxus Bespoke Garden Furnishings. Black window frames on the front of the home were repainted in a Benjamin Moore light French blue. Pittet Architecturals provided the hand-carved, circa-1900 French limestone fountain to serve as an anchor for the dining-room view court. The hushed crunching sound underfoot of a small Lambert’s Blend gravel terrace, which surrounds the fountain feature, enhances the tactile experience and reinforces the essence of the French countryside for the homeowners without their ever having to leave Dallas. — Lambert Landscape Company

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