This almost three year old, now predominately California natives, garden was once just a wide stretch of grassy yard with no trees and some shrubs.
Click here for audio description of this garden.
The homeowners were inspired to transform this yard after learning about and receiving a stipend from the LADWP lawn conversion program in 2011. Once the lawn was gone, the garden could begin to reflect the goals they had begun to develop for a native garden: habitat friendly, drought tolerant, seasonal colors, and scent everywhere! Also, they wanted to create an outdoor “living space” where one could sit, relax, enjoy the sounds of a gentle fountain, or the flutter and buzz of birds, butterflies and bees; to experience privacy without a fence or walls, under a canopy of leaves.
The process began with lots of trial and error! They spent many weekends traveling to and exploring options at native plant nurseries across Southern California, attending workshops and classes, reading and researching. Figuring out what plants work best in which area of the garden continues to be a challenging and rewarding experience, and there is still much design work ahead for this young garden. In 2013 they added edibles (and the challenges of balancing the plants' water needs) as well as a newly planted parkway.
Some of their favorite garden features are the winding rock path, the fountain and the front wooden deck – shaded by a very large and old Caribbean Copper Tree – that serves as a respite from the sun and a perch from which to observe the variety of milkweed, Ceanothus, the stately dogwood, several redbuds, hummingbird sages, currants, buckwheat and the newest addition, an elderberry tree seedling.
As the garden develops, changes, and matures they look forward to the possibilities a native garden provides.