NOTE: This project is to be installed in 2 phases. The current photos show a few “Before” shots and several “Phase 1” progress shots. More photos will follow and the project progresses.
DESIGN GOALS This property was unusually deep for a typical urban lot and the house and the garage were sited near the street which left a long and narrow backyard (50’ x 150’). The owners wanted to use the backyard to entertain, grill, garden edibles and ornamentals and provide their grandchildren and their big goofy labradoodle play space.
CHALLENGES The length of the backyard presented a challenge because standing at the backdoor of the house, anyone had a clear, interrupted view of the back fence and an existing blue spruce about 150’ away. The space felt overwhelming because there was nothing to stop the view or give a pause to the eye. With the exception of the spruce, the backyard was treeless. But the tall hedges on either side of the yard did provide privacy from the neighbors. SOLUTIONS The primary challenge was to create a garden with layers of interest to give the viewer places to pause. So, we created not just one but 2 patios with paths connecting them. The larger patio was located close to the house to have easy access to the kitchen and near the covered area for grilling. A smaller patio was sited about 50’ from the house as a quieter destination. There was a natural slope between the house and the middle of the backyard which was planted with large shrubs and small trees to accent the elevation change and to divert the view. A central planting bed was designed and planted with perennials and trees for color and texture to again, stop the view, create interest and give some enclosure to the smaller patio. Raised bed for vegetables were located in the sunniest spot. And lawn and play area were designed for the dog and kids. 6”X6” Juniper was used to edge the patios, the stairs and create a curb at the base of the slope.