I recently read a couple of articles on garden trends for 2013, and both mentioned the desire for low-maintenance gardening. Some designers I know say there is no such thing, but I differ with them on that. If you choose the right plant and select native varieties, your garden will require minimal pruning and watering.
Thomas Rainier of Grounded Design says romantic gardens are definitely "in" again this year.
"Romantic" can take many forms, and I've always liked this classic by designer Margie Grace of Santa Barbara. It's very California, but it also has, at least to me, a very romantic feeling about it.
Rainer also believes that natural gardens will be big again, along with "interplanted everything," sustainable designs, community gardens, high-value specimen plants, and low-maintenance designs. You can read all of his predictions here.
The Garden Media Group also says natural gardens and sustainable design will continue to be popular, along with herb gardens (veg gardening, they say, is declining in popularity), bright and cheerful colors, shrubs that produce small fruits, living green walls, healthy soils, and miniature containers and plants. Eric Liskey, deputy garden editor of Better Homes & Gardens, was quoted by Garden Media Group as saying that people are making thoughtful purchases -- buying high quality plants and garden products that will "perform and last."
You can read the Garden Media Group's trend predictions here.