Better than beautiful.


Useful Yard represents a place in Seattle and an idea. The place is a 9,000 sq ft property that has changed dramatically since 2014. The idea is that when we’re outside, too much emphasis is placed on beauty. We should be talking about how useful things are, and approach our yards more honestly — the results won’t be any less pleasing.

This website is a virtual garden, with every plant on the property documented (eventually). It’s a resource of book and websites that influence this place. And there’s a blog, recording what happens here and in some other yards.

Photo by Nico Kaomora


I’m André Mora, a typographer and editorial designer. In 2014, my wife and I bought a house with a front yard and back yard, but at the time I knew very little about plants, gardening, and landscape design. I quickly found myself knowing too much. Once it became more than a hobby, I started to write about my experiences and develop some theories.


This website was made with Kirby. In fact, the concept for this site sat in limbo until I learned Kirby, which feels like the only tool that would allow me to produce this. The following typefaces are in use: Recent by Process; Source Serif 4 by Adobe Fonts; Service Gothic by Hex; Steak by Okay Type; and Duos by Underware. All text and photographs copyright André Mora unless credited.