Open Garden of Kathy & John Bachmann
Updated: Sep 18, 2021
3pm to 7pm Saturday, September 18
see Directory for address
BIG IDEAS for small spaces
Our "Covid-19" project through the spring and summer of 2020 was completely relandscaping our property around our 1907 Georgian Colonial home.
I've had a love of gardening from an early age. I grew up on a farm in Ohio where there was plenty of land for experimenting with various types of flower beds — and plenty of space to grow food (veggie gardening being more exciting to me now than as a child). From the age of 10 or 12, I was competing with 4-H projects in landscape design.
By 16, I was working alongside my mom who managed a garden center advising customers on what to plant where. I didn't pursue a career in horticulture but I'm an enthusiastic hobbyist, always excited to learn and try new things.
It was exciting to treat our Montclair property as a nearly "clean slate" to design new garden spaces on each side of the house, each with their own character. Last summer, we moved nearly 100 plants and planted several hundred new ones — including many trees, shrubs, and perennials. We installed a pool that is as much a water feature as it is for swimming fun.
We love the European way of blending modern with historical, and have incorporated a more modern design in the landscape juxtaposed with the plantation railings and stucco of the Georgian Colonial.
We upgraded our square foot gardening boxes to a formal kitchen garden design "French style" with boxwood hedges and small walking paths. We took out sections of sparse grass to build a garden walk in a limited color palette and light tones for enjoyable nighttime viewing from a large covered porch.
We created a 'cottage style' all-season perennial garden on one side for experimentation (can't resist new plant finds!). We designed the space to be highly flexible and frequently adapt the configuration for entertaining seasonally.
We're still endlessly battling trumpet vine the prior owners left with us when we bought the house 11 years ago.