The Gracie Modern Arbor has been making appearances in some truly remarkable landscapes. Over the years, gardeners and designers alike have kept us in the loop sharing photos of their inspired installations. We’re always amazed at how creative our clients get with Gracie and we wanted to share some of these inventive installations and give you some specific ideas on how to use Gracie in your own garden.
Where did Gracie come from?
To give you some background on how we came up with our girl Gracie, we have to revisit some history and agriculture. Many of our landscape sculpture pieces have artistic and historical references, and Gracie’s welcoming shape evokes an earlier time when formal gardens were reputed for their function, elegance and spirituality. Chinese moon gates were used as transitional passageways into a garden with the circular shape representing eternity and unity.
When we first set out to create Gracie, we were informed by the shape of agricultural hoop houses and smaller high tunnel greenhouses used in farms and agriculture. Drive up scenic Highway 1 in California and you are bound to see a few tarp-covered hoop frame shelters for edibles like strawberries, raspberries, and other tender crops that are effected by environmental fluctuations like wind and sun. Seeing these shapes over time on lots of drives played a part in Gracie’s design.
Going Gracie in Austin
Speaking of inspiring greenhouses, we were tickled when our clients Jason and Lindsay in Austin shared some photos of their Gracies (yes, they have several) supporting all types of exotic plants including tropical, sub-tropical and edible varieties.
Thanks to a mild climate, a well-planned greenhouse and two very passionate gardeners, plants like Dragonfruit, San Juan Melon, and yellow Passionfruit happily grow on Gracie Arbors. The Gracies also provide support for larger specimen trees like an Emperor Lychee and a rare Avocado (Candelaria). Tomato vines climbing up the arbors create colorful architectural gateways, delineating freshly-mulched pathways through the bountiful greenhouse gardens.
Going Gracie in Palo Alto
The Gracie Modern Arbor made an appearance in one of the most celebrated gardens on the 2014 Palo Alto Spring Garden Gamble Tour , welcoming visitors into the gardens of an historic California craftsman home. With the home placed dead center in the middle of the property, imaginative landscape designer Sarah Warto of Boxleaf Design created magical gardens, including several different outdoor spaces for the young family that lives here.
Sarah strategically placed the Gracie as the entry point to the property’s edible garden space and nearby chicken coop, and planted Cecile Brunner climbing roses on either side to grow up and over Gracie. A photo of this stunning installation found a big following on the design website Houzz and has been added to over 3,600 idea books. “I love Terra Trellis products and had fun using it in this garden. It helped transition the space and took the edge off of the seriousness of the house and grounded it with its occupants.”
Going Gracie on Bainbridge Island
Leave it to Gracie to be a part of a garden wedding on Bainbridge Island in Washington state. With a Mandevilla vine laced throughout and other flowers dangling from wires, the Gracie took center stage along with bride and groom during a wedding ceremony in a lovely and lush private garden.
Our client Cassie (also a landscape designer) told us: "The trellis really became central to our whole design of the ceremony site. We love it. And boy…the veil of flowers hanging from it was a big hit.” It was referred to as “the love trellis”. Today Gracie still sits prominently in the garden as a gateway from pathways to a lawn area.
Going Gracie in Los Angeles
Yes, the drought is of top concern for everyone here in California, and we have clients turning to us for inventive ways to add color to the garden without using any water. Naturally Gracie found herself amongst low-water plants like agaves, succulents and grasses, where she greets our client Leslie's visitors with beauty and a burst of fragrance from the star jasmine vine growing on the arbor as they enter the property.
Before then, that very Gracie was busy supporting cherry tomatoes on one side and a passion vine on the other in a different part of the garden, demonstrating how she can be moved around a yard and perform different tasks with no complaints.
Going Gracie in Menlo Park
A Gracie Modern Arbor has graced the landscape at Sunset Magazine for a few years now. Their kumquat-colored Gracie is both a garden gateway and a festive focal point in their edible test garden. This Gracie personifies a real California sunset in the test gardens, and has over the years supported climbing edibles like scarlet runner beans and productive grapevines. Check out this gorgeous vine-draped Gracie installation on Sunset's Westphoria blog.
Going Gracie in your garden: what to plant on the Gracie
Earlier this month Garden Design Magazine asked readers on their Facebook page what they would plant on Gracie if given the chance. Readers suggested all types of climbers like clematis, wisteria, bouganvillea, sweet peas, and lots of varieties fragrant roses. We can’t wait to see those ideas come to life!
We’re Flattered But…
We’ve seen some Gracie lookalikes on the web lately, but we all know there’s only one Gracie—that was designed (and copyrighted) by us here at Terra Trellis.