It's that's easy to forget are so many things derived from trees. A new design in an Indiana park is a reminder: a treehouse & recreation structure called "Chop Stick," made almost entirely from a single yellow poplar tree, which also happens to be the state's tree.
Located in a residential neighborhood near Singapore's main shopping street, the Elok House is a mirage. Leaves sprout from walls, floors yield to tall trees, and falling leaves collect on the kitchen floor, while the house's glass façade further dissolves the barrier between indoors and outdoors, urban and natural.
As inspiration during the winter months while your garden sleeps and you prepare for spring, here are photos from the 2012 RHS Chelsea Garden Show's exhibit of "Artisan Retreats"—gorgeous garden sheds that bring the outside in, without even leaving the garden.
The world's largest treehouse is a 97-foot-high chapel in Crossville, Tennessee. Minister Horace Burgess began building in 1993; today, he continues to make improvements and repairs with salvage wood and repurposed materials. It's a popular place for Sunday services, weddings, and, swinging on an 80-foot tall tree.
Xavier Dumont's resin & metal work is a lovely compromise between the controlled design of a grafted espalier and the natural contours of a twig, and it engenders appreciation for the beauty of both. The French sculptor's furniture pieces are on display in London and New York.
For his debut show as Dior's creative director, designer Raf Simons stitched together a setting reminiscent of the fashion house's founding themes—femininity, romance, and flowers. Once again, the house of Dior was a house of flowers.
For the last forty years, landscape architects in Brussels have installed a colorful public exhibit—an enormous carpet of begonias on the cobblestone square at Grand-Palace. This year's inaguration will be on August 15th, and the begonias will be on display through the 19th.
Tagua (pronounced tog-wah) nuts, or "ivory of the rainforest," are a vegetable-based and sustainable alternative to elephant ivory. The seeds are hard and smooth, and easily carved and dyed. They were once used for military buttons, Victorian chess pieces, and dice. Today, tagua "vegetable ivory" is a popular material for jewelry and baubles.