A successful garden doesn't reveal everything at once. One way to create an element of surprise and wonder is with garden rooms. As you stroll through the garden, you walk around a hedge wall and discover a quiet spot with a chaise lounge or bench perfect for reading or reflection.

This entertainment center off the family room of this home in Menlo Park, provides seating around the fire as well as easy access to the barbeque and dining area.

Tucked into the corner of a large property in Menlo Park, this rustic pergola provides a respite from the summer sun.

How do you get people to go out into the garden? By creating garden rooms. Situated under a gigantic Magnolia soulangiana this new dining area beckons the family on warm summer evenings.

Fire pits are wonderful areas for families and guests to congregate. They give a big 'bang for the buck' in a garden and can be found in catalogs, garden shops, and retailers like Target.

Adding a seating area, barbecue island and eating area, gives this family more living and entertaining space.

A private room and quiet spot for reading a good book.

A small seating area off the master bedroom enhances the garden's personality.

In Los Altos Hills, a dining area was created by using flagstone and Sonoma Field stone. The new 'room' has easy access to the kitchen. Thymus sephyllum 'Alba' is planted between the flagstone.

Because there was not much garden space in this Orinda home, the entry garden was converted into a dining area. The owners enjoy breakfast and dinner in this private shade-filled room.

Do you want to get more living area in your garden? For this Sunnyvale home, we reclaimed 6 feet of the front yard and created privacy from the street with the stucco walls and lattice. Eventually the Rosa 'Lavender Lassy' will cover the walls and the Malus 'Robinson' will provide shade.