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Remodeling and Home Design

Here are some design ideas reflected in a small selection of Jane’s landscape designs in the Southern California chaparral.

Welcome to Gardening and Landscaping

Flowers and plants enrich our lives in so many ways. We grow or buy cut flowers from our gardens to decorate our homes and surround outdoor areas with green and blooming color. Gardening is one of the top hobbies in the world. The look of your home can be altered dramatically by the landscaping that surrounds it.  There are so many benefits from working in the garden that can help us physically, psychologically, socially, practically and even economically. Fresh air, exercise, absorbing vitamin D from the sun are all critical to keep our bodies functioning at their best. The brain relaxes and regenerates when working in the garden. Wandering around in nature or lounging in your outdoor space can reduce blood pressure and calm the spirit. Using your landscape for play, exercise, sports, for entertaining or other social activities will release endorphins to the brain (find more detailed information at Healing landscapes.org). Setting up your garden for children and pets adds practicality and expands the usefulness of your living space. Growing fresh vegetables, fruits and flowers to cut and bring into the home improves your diet, decorates your home and saves you money. You can even help the ecology of the planet and support your local wildlife by gardening and landscaping wisely. And these are just some of the benefits of getting involved with the landscape around your home.

There are endless ways to set up the look of your landscape so it fits your lifestyle, compliments your house and offers you the benefits you want. Thousands of different kinds of plants can be used for different effects and exposures, each plant with individual assets and needs. Soil needs to be considered just as temperature, lighting and climate extremes do. And then there is the whole growing world of eco-friendly techniques and products that are helping our gardens serve us well while adding to the environment rather than damaging it.

Whether your interests lie in growing plants, designing beauty, setting up hardscapes (the permanent features in the garden), providing food, creating stress relief, getting exercise, extending useful living space beyond your house structure — whatever goals you have for your property — gardening and landscaping can pay back in so many ways, making your life a better place to live.

All text and photos copyright by Jane Gates.  All rights reserved.

 Jane will be speaking at the Southern California Spring Garden Show on Saturday, April 26th, 2014 from 1-2 pm. Admission is free! And there will be a fun give-away, too!

Contact Jane to speak at your events and seminars at janieg8s@earthlink.net


Flowering bulb

Scilla peruviana

Cactus in flower

The huge flower of the Echinopsis cactus

Clivia flower

Clivia minata blooms


Welcome to my book:All the Garden’s a Stage: Choosing the Best Performing Plants for a Sustainable Garden

Garden book from Jane Gates

My new garden book was released worldwide in late spring, 2012. It’s a fun read that compares creating a successful garden with putting together a great theatrical production. It is available on this site, at Schiffer Books, on Amazon and at your favorite bookstore.


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Wildflowers of Southern California for identifying native wildflowers in this area

Jane’s bio

Contact information

 Hi. Welcome to my GardenGates

Garden Writers  


Jane is a member of the Association of Professional Landscape Designers A site to find garden speakers

Jane’s a member of the Great Garden Speakers. Contact her for a lively and informational presentation on gardening or landscape design.




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Painting your garden with plants, building materials and decor