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LOTUS FLOWER GARDEN

BEFORE

Lotus house before
ABOVE: the front before construction started
BELOW: the existing gate
LOTUS-BEFORE-gate

The front garden is a mess of weeds, an old birdbath and tree stumps.
LOTUS before garden

The new paved walk and the corten steel retaining wall to its right with a large boulder are in place. A small stained Lutyens bench (see below) will be placed at the end of this walk before it turns the corner.
LOTUS-paving and COR-ten wall

this Arts & Crafts style bench was purchased to go at the end of the path above after staining it to match trim on the house.
LOTUS bench

the inserted paving interrupts sheet flow stormwater another place to drain
LOTUS driveway detail

THE DESIGN

Lotus Garden plan
kclick the plan to see an enlarged view

The unfortunate part of this project is that the owner sold the house shortly after completion of the project, unbeknownst to us. So we never got very good 'after' photos because she let the garden go once the house was sold. The new owner came in and took out nearly everything and then remodeled both interior and exterior of the entire house. So the pictures we show are what we were able to get.

BELOW: custom light fixtures we designed after they were installed (but before they were removed by the new homeowner).LOTUS column lightNew light fixtures on top of the new stone columns.

LOTUS pendant fixture
Pendant lamp with lotus blossom at the front portch.

LOTUS entry
Lanterns at either side of the garage door.

NEAR COMPLETION

Lotus Garden nearly done
ABOVE: The old mailbox is still in place. The house has also undergone a dramatic transformation. Custom cut stone caps & light fixtures will grace two massive new columns. (See below left)
BELOW: The finished new gate shows off the lotus symbol.

Lotus Garden gate

The garden near the end of the following summer with some very drought-tolerant grasses. About half of the other plants had died due to lack of watering.
LOTUS after garden

Here we are on planting day:
LOTUS planting day

Here are some of the plants used in the new garden:
CalamagrostisHakonechloa

HelictotrichonEuonymus

Helleborus Sanguisorba

Euphorbia Sarcococca

Left to right from top: Calamagrostis, Hakonechloa, Helictotrichon, Euonymus, Helleborus, Sanguisorba, Sarcococca

ABOUT

  • home was in the process of architectural transformation to contemporary arts & crafts style

  • perched on a bluff overlooking a lake

  • owner is a busy, divorced obstetritian and pediatrician with young daughter

  • steep slopes beyond the front garden, with gentler slope in front

  • several existing trees to remain; AC unit moving from front yard to side yard

  • needs new lighting on the house and at the driveway entry

  • the driveway must be also the walking path to the front door and needed to be completely redone

PROJECT GOALS

  • create a sustainable, low maintenance garden with seasonal color & drought-tolerant plants

  • create a design that works with the contemporary arts & crafts theme

  • design new light fixtures, gate, and driveway posts which also include the mail box

  • provide some privacy screening at sides of front garden and screen the A/C unit

  • create a level area in the front for a sidewalk to the north side yard

  • no water features desired in front garden to minimize maintenance

  • address soil retention in a narrow space

  • help owner select new house colors and siding materials

DESIGN CONCEPTS

  • this design concept sprang from the obstetrician owner...the lotus is a symbol used frequently in arts & crafts and is the symbol of birth & renewal; we stylized a lotus design for this project; it appears in the gate and in the pendant light fixture

  • we used CorTen steel as a retaining wall in the very narrow space adjacent to the front walk and continued the use of that material to unify the garden in the gate and AC cover; lighting was designed to match, but is not COR-ten.

  • stone selected for projects matches that on the house

  • a Lutyens bench was added as the only furnishing in the very front with simple planters beneath the front entry area
 

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REVISED:2/5/2017
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