In the heart of Richardson, just across Belt Line from Cottonwood Park, there’s a cute little neighborhood filled with ranch-style houses built in the 1950s. Many are well maintained. Most are no frills. Some are nicer than others. And one has a putting green.

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By Lisa Ferguson
Special Contributor

The 2019 Celina Garden Tour, an exclusive showcase of eight private home gardens and area wineries, is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 8.

This popular biennial event, hosted by the Celina Garden Club, drew hundreds of attendees from throughout North Texas in 2017. The self-guided tour will be presented rain or shine.

“Our tour homes are full of gardening glory,” Celina Garden Club President Lynn Balint said. “This year, we have a couple of repeat venues because they were so much fun and their gardens were spectacular.  We have also recruited some outstanding new venues.”

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Outdoor kitchen

Photos courtesy Capital Distributing

Editor’s Note: During the three-day Memorial Day weekend, we’re looking back at some of our great stories about outdoor living in North Texas. Enjoy this great piece by personal chef and freelance writer Rachael Abrams as you contemplate upgrading that lonely grill to an outdoor kitchen.

By Rachael Abrams

When it comes to outside dining, there’s nothing quite as clever as an outdoor kitchen. If you have the space, and you live in the South — where the sun shines most days — an outside kitchen is worth the investment.

“Almost without exception, every custom home or remodel we work on today, the owner or builder either includes or plans for a future outdoor kitchen; at a minimum, [he plans for] a nice outdoor living space,” says Mike Davis, President of Capital Distributing.

In agreement with Davis, here are a few things to consider before building an outdoor living space:

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Photos: Courtesy of Harold Leidner Landscape Architects

We’re big fans of artificial turf here at CandysDirt.com, as it’s a water-wise way to have a lawn without all of the seasonal maintenance of turfgrass. However, some homeowners associations have outlawed artificial turf despite its many benefits. One reader writes:

I am an interior designer who worked on a residential project for about three years, and was involved in every aspect of the the design of the home. The home is in a gated community called [redacted]. We submitted the plans to the architectural committee through the builder when we began the project and they were approved. Nowhere in the CCRs did it say that we had to submit further landscape plans for approval. When we got to the landscape design, we wanted a minimal look to coordinate with the home. We are empty nesters and wanted as little maintenance as possible. As a result, we decided to go with a combination of artificial grass, charcoal gravel, and minimal natural plants in both the front and back landscaping. The artificial grass is of a high-end quality that makes it very hard to tell if it is natural or artificial. 

Needless to say, our HOA sent us a denial notification giving us no reason. There is nothing in the CCRs that says you cannot have artificial grass. We’ve hired a lawyer to handle this and have had no success. We even offered to remove the artificial grass on  just the narrow crescent that aligns the sidewalk and they would not accept that. 

We would greatly appreciate any advice you have on this subject. With the new technology in artificial grass, there is no question that it is the way to go! With Texas heat and watering restrictions, this is a wonderful option. I really want to be the person that gets the board members, who are not keeping up with the times, to make a change! 

We asked our most-trusted landscaping expert, Harold Leidner of Harold Leidner Landscape Architects, to weigh in on this obviously contentious issue:
 

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It feels like fall! We’re so excited to have a reason to drink pumpkin spice-flavored anything, to put on a sweater, and decorate our homes for the season. Of course, while everyone loves decorative gourd season, I feel like it’s tough to strike just the right balance between pumpkins and seasonal foliage without going overboard. 

Lucky us, Harold Leidner of his eponymous landscape firm offers some great tips on how to celebrate fall with your own display of decorative pumpkins and gourds.

“Who doesn’t like a spectacular fall display?” Leidner asked. “We’ve heard through the grapevine that, between commentating and running the Corona hotline, Tony Romo takes his kids by one of our houses every year, just to see the pumpkins!”

Want something dramatic without the work? Contact Harold Leidner Landscape Architects for your custom fall display!

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This modern pool by Harold Leidner Landscape Architects incorporates some of the latest and greatest design trends.

With this heat, are you dreaming of adding a cool oasis in your backyard like we are? If you don’t already have a pool, North Texas summers will surely have you wishing that you did, and if you’re wishing for a pool, why not wish for a top-of-the-line design?

That’s what Harold Leidner offers his clients. We asked the founder of his eponymous landscape design and maintenance firm about the latest in pool design and construction. Read on for his answers and you’ll be dreaming of your summer respite in living color!

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This is the time for outdoor living

4225 Ranier Court has and outdoor oasis (photos: Tourmax)

It’s March and that means we get to enjoy outdoor living! Hopefully no more soggy afternoons or need for winter coats.  These next few months are what make North Texas a fantastic place to live. Trees start turning green.  Grass and weeds start growing.  Swimming pools get warmer and you can almost smell the burgers and brats sizzling on the grill.

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Tasteful Christmas lights are easy to accomplish when you hire the experts at Harold Leidner Landscape Architects. (Photos: Harold Leidner)

Though our winter weather in Dallas and Fort Worth is often mild, that doesn’t mean your landscape is out of the woods. And who doesn’t like to have their halls decked by someone else? Today we’re tackling some winter landscaping questions and myths with the one and only Harold Leidner. Find out how you and your yard can have a happy holidays this season, all without lifting a finger:

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