Category Archives: Montara

Courtyard Makeover

This is how it looked the first time I saw it. With almost no direction (which works pretty well for me), I was asked to design a makeover for this courtyard.

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So, faced with a blank slate that was crying out for *something*, here’s what I came up with. Please keep in mind that I hadn’t done a perspective drawing in a few years. (it’s not perfect, to say the least…)

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The client loved the design and gave the go-ahead. Yipee! Now, usually the finished product varies from the conceptual drawing  in varying degrees. Either the client requests changes mid-stream, I suggest a change because reality didn’t allow for something on paper, or any of several other possible reasons. But this time, the results matched the design with uncanny preciseness.

See?

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With the exception of the Wisteria not yet covering the arbor, this is definitely a plan that came together well!

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Enclosed Cliffside Patio- before & after

Here’s some fun before & afters to look at. I won’t bore you with words- as they say, ” A picture’s worth…”

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#2)

 

#3)

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Filed under jobs, Montara, secret gardens

Before, During and After pics

For the past year I’ve been working on a really wonderful project. It’s a beautiful spot right on a cliff above the ocean. The weather is pretty extreme, so plant selection has been tricky, to say the least! I’m doing a fairly good job at taking lots of pictures, which is not always my strong point. Here’s just a little taste…

Before:

Just after planting(with some rare sun!):

 

6 months After:

More on this project in the future!

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Filed under jobs, Montara, succulents

Building a Dry Stack Stone Wall

Here’s proof that I don’t make others do all the labor! I actually really love building small walls, paths, patios, etc. myself. This was a fun project for an intimate courtyard right off a master bedroom. I had fun tucking tiny Sedums into the nooks. One side of the fence surrounding this garden is glass, allowing for a breathtaking view of the ocean.

Once the plants grow in, I think this will look quite nice!

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Job done… after pics and more

 

Woodland path looking a bit neglected...

Woodland path looking a bit neglected...

   “Fluffing” job is done.  Whew. LOTS of weeding. Mostly done by Perry, Dave, Scott and Juan, but of course I followed them around from time to time, pulling the stragglers. We also did a lot of pruning, tired/dead plant removal and planting. The property looks great and the clients are pleased. Yay.

   This garden was planted 25 years ago by the original homeowner. A lot of do-it -yourself stuff, for the most part aesthetically pleasing, but some components haven’t held up structurally so well. So…I never felt like we were completely DONE. I wanted everything to look perfect (relatively), but had to keep reminding myself that it wasn’t possible- without a total redo. I was there to refresh (fluff!) the property for a special occasion, and that’s what we did.

   Here’s an example of the subtle (sublime?) changes that we wrought over three days. The woodland path was weeded, pruned (look up at the  tree canopy on both images) and the paving was cleaned- making sure to not take ALL the moss away!  A lot more light now filters down on the ferns, forget-me-nots and the Iris. Kinda makes you want to take a stroll, doesn’t it?

Woodland path...nice and tidy

Woodland path...nice and tidy

 

Below:    This view was the first thing you saw when you parked at the house.

 

first impression...before

first impression...before

 

    There was a 90% dead Hebe hedge (left through center),

    a really messy Phormium(right)

    and a whole planting bed in need of care

    that you can’t see behind the hedge.

 

 

 

First impression of house and garden

First impression of house and garden... after

   Right: This is how the same view  looked when we were done

 

Hebe hedge gone,

all plants cleaned up,

new plants and mulch added

and potted sucullents added

near the cool

horse head hitching posts.

 

 

                        Here’s a closer look at the pot next to the hitching post.

detail of new pot with sucullents

close up of new pot with sucullents

  There is an identical twin to this pot and hitching post just about ten feet to the right, flanking the entrance to the front walk, just out of camera shot.

 

On to the next job!

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Filed under Alamo St., jobs, Montara, Uncategorized

New Job…..before pics

   Just started a job today- not a design job, but should be a fun quickie. The clients want the areas around the house “fluffed up”,  so their property looks good for an upcoming event. It was a beautiful, sunny day and felt quite peaceful and idyllic up there. My crew- Perry (the drill sergeant), Dave & Juan did a great job, even when a yellow jacket nest was uncovered. Juan got stung 3 times, so they took turns working near the nest. So brave! 😉 Here’s some before shots… I’ll post after pics in a few days.

sunny fountain bed

sunny fountain bed

 

plum tree bed

plum tree bed

 

front walk

front walk

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