Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Gardening Friends - Dallas Foster

Notes from a Country Garden - September 14, 2011

My dear readers, do I ever have a treat for you today.  I have just returned from a most lovely morning at the home of Dallas and Susan Foster.  Dallas is the owner of Landscapes by Dallas Foster located in Vincennes, Indiana.  Before we begin this article, I want to mention all photographs are property of Dallas Foster.  I appreciate him allowing me to capture his garden in late summer season, and all permissions associated.  No linking, posting or Pinterest submissions please.  Thank you.


The front of Dallas and Susan Fosters home in mid-September.

Our visit actually happened a week ago today, that is how busy things have been around here.  This visit has been in the works for some time.  Dallas and I have been attending several of the same garden events the last couple years and had gotten to know each other.  I had wanted to see his garden after the photographs he had shared with me.  I am so glad I was able to spend the morning with him and hear him tell about the creation of this beautiful country estate.


Look to the far right, that is the largest climbing hydrangea that I have ever seen in our area.  Simply stunning.

The home and garden are approximately 16 years old.  It sets on several acres on the edge of town mostly surrounded by mature trees.  From the minute you enter the driveway, you know this is a special garden, it extends all the way from the road, over a stone bridge and past a pond…. where you only see the house the last few hundred feet.  It looks like a park as you enter.  Dallas says he intended it to be that way, that you leave your troubles at the road and hopefully are more relaxed by the time you get home…. I loved that idea.  I feel very similar about the approach to my own home.


Here is outside his garage door with a mixture of evergreens, annuals and a beautiful bright pink Anemone called 'Rosenschale'. 

I must say I did not take as many pictures as I should have.  It was my own fault.  I will say he and I can go toe to toe on plant addictions.  I was in awe of his mature borders, plant combination and native introductions mixed with evergreen foundations.  So many of his selections offered many seasons of interest, such as berries in the fall or interesting foliage.  I must say I now have extended my plant wish list by at least a dozen new things.  One in particular is a deciduous holly, Ilex decidua  that bloomed with orange berries.  It just glowed and I know the birds would love it. 


This lovely garden shed took my breath away, it is tucked behind the house in the far let corner of the property….

Want to know a secret?  They call it the “Dog House!” it is air-conditioned with a puppy door for the dogs to go in or out!  Their daughter has even painted murals inside, it is beautiful inside and out.  Don’t tell Scooby, he will want one like this at our house!


Dallas is known locally for his use of natural elements.  He uses natural stones and recycled elements throughout his garden designs.


When you enter his private back garden you are transported into a different world full of lush tropicals. 


I could not help feeling I was walking through pictures in a garden magazine.  His vignettes were so perfectly planted.


His backyard oasis is most inviting.  I love the stone plantings softening the edges of his pool.


Fantastic mix of colors from celandine green to dark burgundies to greys  in the foliage colors extend interest all throughout the garden seasons.


He is a gardener after my own heart, densely planting his borders.   He agrees with me, more plants equal less work…. you have to cover the ground or weeds will.


He has a fantastic collection of sedums and other groundcovers tucked into his rocks. 


I love the flagstone surface, deep blue of his pool with the crisp orange/red cushions on his furniture pieces.  Look at that fantastic palm tree in Southern Indiana!  You are definitely transformed by this garden.


This area is a sunken hot tub surrounded by nature.


Parts of the walkway to the spa area….  I love that winding branch with the flowers and ferns!


Here you can see the mature trees that are the backdrop.  It is very private by design.


He changes the plantings every year slightly.   Many of the plants are not hearty in our zone, they have to winter-over indoors or be replaced.  But that gives him a chance to add new varieties, I cannot imagine anything not already on display.  It was so diverse and immaculate on our visit. 


When arranging the tour for my garden club, Dallas like so many of us gardeners in early fall told me, “You should tour it in the Spring….” 

“Yes, I certainly intend to Dallas.  I am positive it is breathtaking.”

We have had a horrible long drought this late summer.  But I love fall gardens, and the sounds and sights of the berries and leaves slightly turning were enchanting.  I promise to return to this garden again, for we have big plans of trading a few plants now and then.  I also will be suggesting this garden to my online connections for print.  I feel it is the perfect scene for a professional to photograph and would be enjoyed by so many others.  After all this work, it needs to be cherished for the lovely dream garden it has become.

To see more of Dallas Fosters creative gardens visit his website….

To see many more photographs of this garden including the entrance, rock bridge, pond and woodland areas visit

Happy Gardening and Thanks Again to Dallas and Susan Foster….Brooke


  1. Oh thank you so much for this wonderful tour! Loved visiting with you.

  2. Thank you so much for this tour. You are so fortunate to have such a beautiful garden to visit - please give us seasonal photo tours if he would be so kind to let you. I've never really liked the look of a swimming pool in a yard, but I would 'allow' one if it were constructed as beautiful as his is. It blends in and enhances the yard...not a gray cement hole in the ground. His yard is breathtaking!

    You'll find it funny that as I was looking at your photos, I had to get up to see if I had a window open as I heard your 'birds'. So much more enjoyable than the music that some add to their blogs. I don't stay long at blogs that do have music, but the birds, I could listen to all day.

    Thank you for visiting my blog - I am now a follower of yours. And thanks to Dallas!

  3. This certainly is wonderful! Larry


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