Magazine article Sunset

From Ho-Hum to Heavenly

Magazine article Sunset

From Ho-Hum to Heavenly

Article excerpt

New outdoor living spaces transform a tired garden

* When Paul and Susan Robbins bought their 1926 Craftsman house in Los Angeles last year, it's a safe bet that their realtor didn't think the backyard was one of the property's selling points. To most prospective buyers, it must have looked discouraging, with a worn-down lawn, rough-hewn pond, and vast sweeps of broken concrete paths.

But Paul is a garden designer, and when he looked at the space, he saw potential. He liked the garden's simple shape--a perfect 50-foot square. "A garden like that is easy to divide up into areas, which is what I wanted to do," he says. He imagined the garden as it looks today, sectioned into inviting spaces for entertaining or to retreat to alone--the whole softened and sensualized with flowing ornamental grasses, aromatic Mediterranean lavender and rosemary, and fragrant citrus trees.

Paul recognized the mature plants that were worth hanging on to, including a handsome pepper tree that screened out the telephone pole in the alley, and pittosporum shrubs tall enough to hide most of the concrete block wall that borders the garden. "They made the space feel sheltered and quiet," he says. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.