Magazine article Sunset

A Bold Arbor for Plants and People

Magazine article Sunset

A Bold Arbor for Plants and People

Article excerpt

It ties together a garage and a guest cottage

There's nothing meek about Page Sanders's arbor. It combines large columns and heavy beams on a grand architectural scale to confidently unify and organize her backyard. The arbor marches across the rear of her garden in five giant strides, each marked by a pair of the stucco columns. The spacing of the columns helps define zones in front of and beneath the structure.

Sanders, a Palo Alto landscape designer, used the arbor to tie together and partially mask a garage and a small guest cottage. The arbor and connected buildings make a broad backdrop for a courtyard garden captured between the structures and the main house at the front of the property.

The arbor performs a number of other jobs: it directs foot traffic, frames views, supports climbing plants, and offers shady places for people to sit. The columns divide the central court into a patio, a planting area, a brick-lined pond ringed by a path, and a bed for shade trees.

The arbor takes its visual cues from the main house. …

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