Garden designer discovers MH Community lifestyle, shares tips

gail dresner garden designer and oregonliveOregonLive reports that garden designer Gail Dresner stumbled upon the manufactured home community lifestyle doing an online search for an affordable island house. When nothing in her budget popped up in internet searches, Dresner said: “Finally, I put in zero for the lower parameter,” Dresner says. “It exploded with manufactured homes, but I still had the misconception that I’d be coming down in status. … We learn from an early age that if you live in one you’re poor, that you’re not professional. Having moved into one, I think they’re fabulous. I’ve never experienced such a supporting, friendly and diverse community. It’s a microcosm of the way things should be.” Dresner discovered a home on the bluff above the Columbia River. The Hayden Island Manufactured Home Community home had a hard-to-beat price tag of $35,000. The garden designer offered numerous tips for creating gardens in small, narrow spaces. Use all vertical space possible, including the side of the house, shed, wire or fencing. Creating an arch vine. Choose plants with light-colored leaves to brighten shady spots. Go with a theme, or two or three in different places. Showcase your interests. In sunny areas, espaliered fruit trees take up little space. Placement of a special art piece focuses a small garden space. You can also design the space in keeping with the object. Water pots can be used for water lilies which thrive in still water in full sunlight.

(Photo credit: Gail Dresner  and OregonLive)

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