Every once in awhile someone hires Gardenerd to landscape their property, not to install a vegetable garden. This particular client already had a thriving vegetable garden, but wanted new landscaping to create an oasis in the city. Here were her issues:
Her front yard consisted of lawn and a hodge podge of treasured plants discovered over the years. Many of the plants required more sun than was available, so they stretched out toward the light, making them leggy and sprawling. She wanted to put things in their proper place and switch to drought tolerant and native plants.
The backyard was trying to have grass, but shade from overgrown fruit trees and a couple of very active dogs made it impossible. The homeowners entertained guests often and wanted both an inviting space to mingle and a spot to relax under a tree. As with the front yard, there were a menagerie of plants that needed direction.
We removed all the turf and pruned the overgrowth of bamboo and citrus trees (shown dangling down into head space – upper right corner). The client choose warm-toned flagstone as a durable surface that will hold up to dog traffic. We also defined the space for seating areas.
In the front yard, the homeowners wanted to enclose the space with a fence to keep the dogs in check, and they needed a place for their hammock. What better place than under an existing palm tree?
We created another flat area (below left) for a small table and chairs so the homeowners can enjoy lunches out front. Plants were heavily pruned or moved to a sunnier spot, and shade-loving natives or drought-tolerant plants were put in their place.
The end result? A new cozy space with plenty of seating for guests, private spaces for relaxing and order amongst the chaos.
We used leftover flagstone to build a dry-stack planter for her roses, and added succulents to fill in the surrounding space. This spring, the roses will offer showy color to the neighborhood.
The fence around the backyard needed to be shored up to keep the dogs from barking at passers-by in the alley behind. We added slats of wood to eliminate the visual temptation. We also planted dodonaea and kangaroo paw to match the color of some existing fountain grass. We potted up the homeowners orchids in cheery containers (already on site) to break up the existing planter box.
A mosaic-tiled table replaced the over-sized iron table, making it easier to navigate the back yard.
The clients are happy with the result and we suspect the dogs are as well.