Gray Frame Corner

10 Timeless Garden Ideas That Designers Wish Were Trending Again 

“Classics such as dahlias, peonies and bearded irises and flowering shrubs such as hydrangeas give wonderful beauty and romance to the garden,” explains Cervoni. 

Big, Dramatic Bloom

Jim Sutton, associate director of display design at Longwood Gardens, advises gardeners to let old-fashioned annuals like cosmos, salvia, verbena, snapdragons, and phlox seed in. 

Nostalgic Annual

“Most absolutely, I would like to see gardeners cease trimming shrubs into meatball shapes to restrict their size,” adds Sutton. 

Natural-looking Shrub

Sutton advises using natural ground covers instead of landscape fabric or high-maintenance lawns. “Oftentimes, a gardener's intent on making a garden weed-free creates a different eyesore when the landscape fabric inevitably becomes exposed.” 

Ground Cover

Roses—especially the puffy, cupped cabbage roses of yesteryear—were once considered finicky and hard to grow. 


Roses are essential in a vintage-inspired garden, but lilacs, with their enticing perfume, are also lovely. 

Fragrant Plant

Cervoni says, “I appreciate the symmetry of traditional English or Scottish gardens, the grandiosity, and the maximalist approach.” 

A Touch of Formality

Scanniello recommends planting climbing and rambling roses, which look great cascading over stone walls or scrambling up a trellis, in a garden with other climbers like clematis to create a wonderful ambiance. 

Climbing Plant

Climbing plants need a structure, and Cervoni likes classic European or Art Deco obelisks and metalwork furniture. 

Garden Structure

Because gardeners love bringing freshly cut flowers from their garden within, cutting gardens are growing in popularity. 

Cutting Garden

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