Category Archives: outdoor living

hardscape planter box

Rosenstein Landscape

Beverly Katz Adds a Touch of French Quarter Style to Metairie Home Old world custom fireplace, brick paved courtyard and black wrought-iron details reflect influences of Spanish and French architecture. Upon entering Cathy Green Rosenstein’s garden in Metairie, you cannot help but notice the vibrant colors that greet you. The eye is drawn to a large multi-trunk Savannah Holly tree and an elegant fountain used to anchor the space while setting the stage for a colorful garden that flanks the kitchen window. Intended to be enjoyed from inside the home as well as outside, the garden incorporates varying textures and heights, creating visual interest from both perspectives. Dwarf mondo grass provides a lush filler of dark green blades and is the perfect backdrop for the surrounding pink geraniums, blue salvias and sun-loving impatiens. Beverly Katz left nothing to chance when…

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backyard landscape

I heart New Orleans

It’s Valentine’s Day and I can’t help but to think of the love I have for New Orleans – our city is so diverse in its culture, music, food and even landscapes! We have traditional New Orleans courtyards that Exterior Designs has become somewhat of a local legend for designing. We also get a lot of requests for outdoor patios, kitchens and comfortable areas to entertain guests when grilling, boiling crawfish or crabs, or hosting a fish fry. More recently, we have been asked to design meditation gardens. That’s right, a place where residents can get away from the hustle and bustle of the city and retreat to a relaxing, tranquil garden in their very own back yard. I think this trend is a result of our busy schedules – we’re running around town, working full-time, carting our children to after-school…

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hardscape planter box

Summertime Landscaping

Planning a bridal shower, wedding, baby christening??? Or maybe, you want a change—a chance to relax in your courtyard or backyard with welcoming flora and perhaps new hardscape, or lightening. What better reason to refurbish your summertime landscaping? Now is the time to clear away and update last year’s annuals, weeds and overgrowth and make changes. Think of an all-white landscape planted with happy geraniums, gentle Impatiens, crisp wax begonias, elegant Spathiphyllums, and contemplative hydrangeas—in the soil surrounding the landscape or in an array of splendid clay or ceramic pots, in gorgeous colors and sizes to fit within your plan throughout your landscaping. Maybe you want a more colorful palate for your landscaping. This is the time of year—the right season–to make changes to create the look and feel you want for your special moments and events—or just for you….

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modern garden

Gardens: a place where modern landscape design and comfort unite

Guest article by Jelena Djurdjevic. Image graciously provided by Homebuyers Centre. Though often overlooked as an art form, the best landscape design combines aesthetics, culture and functionality to create a pleasing outdoor space. As with all design work, it has changed with the times and adopted new styles and ideas. A few relatively small changes to a garden area can completely change the look and feel of a house. The lighting, the plants, the complimentary or contrasting elements to the building – these can all build upon each other to create something really special. It can be done with less time and less money than you might perhaps expect, as well. Ornaments for everyone’s taste Garden items are usually what first attracts the eye to a landscape garden. These include things like water features, statues, bird baths, and other ornaments….

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new orleans landscape

Landscaping Tip: Mosquito Repellant Plants

As the weather warms up outside, we are not the only ones getting excited about the spring, so is our honorary state bird, the mosquito. There are several methods to deter these pests from crashing your outdoor party ranging from candles to repellent sprays, but we like to use plants! Not only will plants offer a natural, chemical-free, safe way to repel mosquitos; they add color and fragrance to your outdoor space. Here are a few of our favorite insect repelling plants that will also thrive down here in South Louisiana. Lavender With the exception of the hearty, but less fragrant Spanish Lavender, many varieties of lavender cannot withstand the wet soil, heat and humidity of South Louisiana. That is until the recent introduction of ‘Phenomenal’ which, according to Southern Living Magazine, is a version of the herb that can not only withstand the growing conditions here,…

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landscape exterior

A Total Landscape Transformation

Throughout this landscape transformation, Exterior Designs worked with the client to create unique outdoor spaces surrounding this beautiful New Orleans home. We were able to create comfortable outdoor rooms throughout all sides of the residence. From off-street parking to a side entryway and two courtyards, the home’s personality was brought back to life. Check out our before and after photos to see the full landscape transformation.

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pool and backyard renovation

Good Fences Make Great Neighbors

Maybe Robert Frost didn’t agree in his “Mending Wall” poem, but over the years we have come to learn that good fences really do make great neighbors. Privacy is always a concern especially when living in the city, and Exterior Designs has helped numerous clients in solving their challenges through well placed landscaping. Take this New Orleans home for example, our client came to us seeking a way to make his backyard more secluded from the neighboring houses.   Their main complaint was they could not enjoy their back porch, pool or patio without feeling like they weren’t alone. I’m sure they have lovely neighbors, but no matter how nice they are there are times when you just crave a little solitude. Beverly Katz of Exterior Designs, Inc. is known for her vision in which she can correct a homeowner’s problem…

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meditation garden pergola

Exterior Designs Redesigns St. George’s Episcopal School’s Commons

Exterior Design’s Beverly Katz used form and function to define areas of this commercial landscape. Separate conversation areas allow the students to gather and enjoy the outdoors, while providing them comfortable seating. The gardens throughout the landscape are defined by raised brick. Adding a raised edge is a sure way to keep pedestrians from unintentionally walking through the garden. Beverly also included an interactive play area with a life-size chess board. Large trees provide shade for the middle school students as they enjoy their outdoor time. Although the original intent for the space was primarily for student use, the St. George’s faculty finds themselves using the outdoor room more than expected. The beautiful garden has become the perfect spot for hosting meetings, lunches and parent/teacher conferences. As the landscape matures, the foliage will fill out and provide the perfect backdrop to this outdoor…

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pergola

Hardscaping, the foundation of a successful landscape

You have decided to create an outdoor space, now it is time to plan for your hardscaping needs. Hardscaping offers a plethora of appealing options whether you want a paved walkway or driveway or an elaborate outdoor living room. When planning the hardscape phase of your project, the entire landscape of the area must be a consideration. One would not build a house by building a room, then a year or two later, add another room. Your outdoor space has to be given the same consideration as you are designing your space.  You may want to start with a patio and a walkway, then your project could eventually include a pool, water feature or retainer wall.  The planning stage should include a professional consult to help you reach the current and future goals for your space. Next you will want to choose a…

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outdoor classroom

Pergolas & Arbors

Pergolas and arbors create an airy magnificent presence to any landscape, and a welcoming extension to your home. Below are some of the designs Exterior Designs has completed over the years.

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