For this project we were given the pleasure of working with one of our repeat clients—and quite the project it was. Situated in one of Austin’s most premiere locations, before we got our hands on it the landscape for this house was left in significant disrepair. There were broken water features, limbs damaging the sides of the house, overgrown grass and weeds, and overgrown vines. The homeowners trusted us to come up with new ways to enhance and cleanup the space on this beautiful property, while also keeping it dog friendly and adding some new raised planters for a vegetable garden. Two living walls and a custom water feature made this property unique from others like it, and native plants were chosen to frame the house, rather than distract from it, giving it our Native Edge touch. After several months of install, plus one outdoor shower and kitchen later, the finished product turned out to be well worth the effort.
All too often designers need to be reminded not to focus on form over function. However, in order to truly have complete functionality within a space one must think creatively otherwise it would be impossible to achieve.When we were given this project back in February we knew it was going to be a challenge. Before, the entire space was virtually unusable for entertaining, and the homeowners would rarely go outside. The stairs needed support beams to be sturdy, but other than that no thought was put into the function of the space under the stairs, especially since it was in such a small yard. After we got our hands on it, however, that all changed. By simply using techniques and design elements we were already comfortable with, we were able to utilize every inch of space. The stairwell's height actually turned out to be one of its greatest assets when we installed this vertical herb garden along the side. Stairs are a perfect place to put a garden like this, because if you put a planter box at every other stair you'll know they'll be evenly spaced and look great! Because there was equipment under the stairs, we also created a gate out of the same material used for the vertical garden creating a seamless finish, as well as adding mesh along the side to allow vines to grow up. Not mentioned above, we also created this fire pit/planter box combo allowing for even more utility despite our lack of dimensions. We finished the entire design with our signature cement pavers and gorgeous yellow pots and now this backyard is fit for any home!
With the weather finally starting to cool down and the holiday spirit starting to ramp up, you're probably planning on preparing a lot of holiday meals this coming winter and fall. And what would a holiday meal be, of course, without some fresh herbs! Herbs not only taste good, they look good, and can be a beautiful part of any landscape. Especially, when it comes to hedging.That's because as you cut off leaves for your recipes, you can also trim the plant into the shape you want. Double duty! Trim the tops off your plants to create a more traditional look, or trim your rosemary into a small tree or topiary just in time for the winter holidays!One of my favorite herbs to do this with, which is dramatic and easy to care for, is rosemary. Rosemary does well in the Texas sun and is drought resistant. You just need to make sure it has well drained soil, and you're good to go. Trim it often and your rosemary with continue to bring you fresh new growth every year.When looking to buy your own plant be sure to get a variety of rosemary that is upright and not creeping. Creeping rosemary stays low to the ground and will spill over edges if planted in a container. Upright rosemary grows up, and is used to create hedges. Upright rosemary has a higher oil content, which means it tastes better, and it is also easier to harvest!