Magazine article Sunset

Ground Breakers

Magazine article Sunset

Ground Breakers

Article excerpt

7 knockout garden trends for 2011 BY KATHLEEN N. BRENZEL

There is always a line of people at our farmstand wanting to buy the ' nopales. They can find them at the Mexican market-but the stuff we harvest is so much better quality, and so much cheaper.iThey'buy them by the box

-SANDY FROST, PROGRAM COORDINATOR AND FELLOW FARMER

Ignacio Castillo takes a break beside rows of bean plants.

VISIT The Hayward Community Gardens year-round farmstand at City Hall Plaza in Hayward, CA. $-1 Sat; 777BSt.

SUNSET DREAM GARDEN AWARDS

1 WINNER

Sustainability

ECO CHIC

Sustainabillty is fun in this Santa Barbara backyard, which has a hot tub and rock-lined firepit tucked behind the grassy "meadow," but uses 95 percent locally sourced or salvaged materials. The judges' take: "It says, 'Grab the marshmallows and meet me at the campfire.' "

DESIGN Maggie Grace, Grace Design Associates, Santa Barbara (gracedesign associates.com or 805/687-3563). Breezehouse by Blu Homes (bluhomes.com)

Why it won

REUSE OF 200 TONS OF STONE The sandstone takes on a cobblestone-y Euro feel as seating, walls, and borders.

DROUGHT-TOLERANT GRASSES These plants are low maintenance and eye-catching.

'THERE'S ENOUGH BUBBLY HERE TO FILL A SWIMMING POOL"

2 HONORABLE MENTION

Design details

LIGHTS AS ART

Anthony Exter placed these globe lights to suggest bubbles rising from the water - riffingoff a comment overheard at a party here in his client's Pasadena garden: "There's enough bubbly hereto Fill a swimming poo

DESIGN Anthony Exter Landscape Design, Los Angeles (anthpnyextercom or 323/665-9995

3 HONORABLE MENTION

Design details WELL-DESIGNED FIREPITS

Rugged and natural-looking, this sunken firepit on Lake Washington is hard edged and geometric on the patio side but gently curving on the beach part, where natural granite boulders pack its sides. Feathery grasses blend with the shoreline habitat beyond. A boulder-seat is just right for extra guests.

DESIGN Randy Allworth, Allworth Design, Seattle (ailwOrthdesign.com or 206/623-7396]

4 WINNER

Renovation

FIREPROOFED & LAWNLESS

Years after an Oakland firestorm ravaged their lot, the owners of this garden decided they wanted a yard to match their rebuilt modern home. So they opted for a patio of bluestone pavers, crushed rock, and low groundcovers, edged with a sinuous concrete seat wall - and contained fire burns in a custom firepit of Cor-ten steel.

DESIGN Mathew Henning 81 Heather Anderson, Henning-Anderson, Oakland (henning-anderson.com or 510/531-3095)

Why it won

MOD MATERIALS Crushed drain rock adds a contemporary edge to bluestone pavers. …

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