The Blog

Happy New Year!

As this old year ends (and not too soon) this post gives me the chance…

A Parterre Christmas

Every Christmas has its signature. This year, not knowing what draconian measure or which “pause”…

Bedecked and Bedazzled: Christmas at The Breakers

What is more joy-filled than a fifteen foot Christmas tree of live, brilliant red poinsettias?!…

Past Christmases at Parterre

In spite of 2020 being an “annus horribilis” (to quote Queen Elizabeth) we’ve made it…

The Adventures of a Narrative Gardener

My friend, Ron Fleming, is a Renaissance man in the truest sense of the word–writer,…

Enjoy your cozy Thanksgiving!

I wanted to take the opportunity at this wonderful time of the year, especially with…

A Newport Autumn at Parterre

With our wonky weather this past month–snow on October 30th, an earthquake 8 days later–fall…

Inspiring Architectural Design: “Commodore” James’s Boathouse

Count on Newport, one of the yachting capitals of the world, to have a singular…

Gardens of the North Shore of Chicago

For you garden lovers like me, I’m betting that a gorgeous, exceptional new book on…

Inspiring Architectural Design: Oakwood

Oakwood has led a charmed life. Built in 1854 as a wedding gift for William Backhouse…

Inspiring Architectural Design: Berkeley House

It is difficult to overstate the fame and influence of the architectural firm McKim, Mead…

The Virtues of Autumn Clematis

Autumn is rather limited in the variety of plants that are still blooming now. But…

Inspiring Architectural Design: Edgehill

As a true Texan would say, “I love that the welcome mat is always out…

Inspiring Architectural Design: Bois Doré

My last book, Living Newport: Houses, People, Style (2014), was a response to the latest…

An Impromptu Evening in September

This summer unofficially closed with a rare “balmy” night that prompted me to embrace the…