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COTTAGE WHIMSY

WHERE WE STARTED

Cottage Whimsy, front before
view from the front sidewalk shows the need for a new retaining wall; the open porch goes to the front door

Cottage Whimsy, driveway before
the owner had attempted an intricate brick pattern up the center of the driveway, but it quickly got weedy and made for difficult maintenance
cottage tulips
above the patio area lies a birdbath in its spring splendor
plant progress

WHERE WE'RE GOING

Cottage Whimsy, plan
click on the plan for an enlarged view
of the proposed renovation

Cottage Whimsy, architect's wall sketch
the architect's sketch of the new retaining wall will be all brick faced with brick columns that have amusing ceramic tiles on them; click on the sketch for an enlarged viewCottage Whimsy, wall tile
a sample of a proposed wall tiles; the owners are making them

BELOW: the cat inspects the patio progress

patio progress

 

 

LEFT: some plant changes are occurring, too. Zauschneria in bloom.

WORK IN PROGRESS

Cottage Whimsy, driveway in progress
new steps adjacent to the retaining wall, a new planting bed, bricks set out to line the new driveway

Cottage handrail
A new handrail is added for safety.

NEW STEPS

ABOVE: new steps around the quince bed with a dusting of quince petal;

ABOUT

  • typically-sized city lot; front garden is the project area for now, with the back yard to follow
  • steep elevation change from street to house

  • beautiful existing quince tree in front

  • although on a residential street, it is a thoroughfare with little privacy and at the very end of a perpendicular street

  • homeowners are 1-plant collector and 2-do-it-yourself for much of the work (except concrete and steel work)

  • existing soil is extremely well drained with considerable rock, but is excellent at maintaining slope

PROJECT GOALS

  • replace existing driveway and create new stairs
  • create private seating area in front

  • include water feature

  • keep plant collector organized and directed to prevent a garden with too many 'masses of one'.

  • most of garden must be low-water usage

DESIGN CONCEPTS

  • new curved concrete steps lead visitors gently to the front porch and private front patio in the garden.

  • An olive tree anchors the border between the new steps and the patio.

  • Wider paths wind around the existing quince tree bed and access the back garden through the existing side gate.

  • The water feature will begin at the quince bed level and spills over the wall into a rill which will bisect the patio before it ends at the affectionately named "monolith".

  • The monolith will be a piece of art to create a barrier between the owners and the street, providing privacy and focal point above a rectangle of water below.

 

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REVISED:1/7/16
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