The door we all use to enter the house, on its north side, leads into a plant-filled porch off our library. Originally that door spilled directly onto the driveway, where the garage jutted off from the house. But I hated having cars and trucks parked right outside our library windows. After we'd been in the house ten years, I was finally able to reroute the driveway 30 yards away, out of sight behind a hedge. On an axis with the porch door, I created a little courtyard of crabapple trees in boxwood squares. A straight path leads from the new parking area down to this small garden, all green and trim except when the crabapples flower in May and when they are littered with red fruit in the fall. Instead of looking at cars, I now see past the four crabs and past openings in two clipped hedges to a dogwood tree. How much nicer to look out to flowers than to the UPS truck.
Pictured: The kitchen terrace is shaded by a Japanese crabapple, Malus floribunda.