|Photos - Carter Mays|
Both the front and back yards sport a bevy of flowers in a jumble of colors, with both California natives and other drought tolerant plants included to create an exciting, yet natural effect.
The front yard of this Do-It-Yourself garden started in the summer of 2009, followed by the backyard in the fall of 2011. First shown in 2012, you can now see how it's maturing.
The garden started with a base of decomposed granite ("DG") to replace the lawn. The homeowner planted drought tolerant flowers all around in a doughnut shape. The homeowner researches plants as a hobby, looking for Mediterranean, Californian, Texan, Arizonan or Mexican flowers that might fit into the garden. After identifying the plants online it, this “gardening detective” found it surprisingly easy to locate flowering shrubs at local nurseries.
After doing all the planting without professional help, the homeowner has continued to do all of the maintenance without outside assistance. Because there is no outside gardener to help out, the garden was planned with easy upkeep in mind. Maintenance requires about one hour of work per week to check on any weed growth and/or to prune the plants a bit. No mowing. No leaf-blowing. What a pleasure for everyone!