The Front: Small But Potent

Where flat land and real estate prices elevate, San Diego takes a different approach. No covering the land with useless concrete or gravel; instead, it’s precious space for an intimate planting or outdoor living space.

Either side of La Jolla’s Windansea Beach one afternoon, pure delight –

What’s behind the Hollywood Juniper and hipster fence? To some, it looks too small to be of any use, including for a garden…

I had killer carne asada and fresh guacamole waiting for me at El Indio, but this trip’s research, too…

A patio next to a busy side street, yet so far…coffee with a special friend or just by ones’ self…

Of course, a virtual body check kind correction to any dismissals of my area’s outdoor living potential, or bad excuses for the status quo, by saying we don’t have the climate for it. Someone probably reads all the wrong activists hippies in suits authors, or doesn’t have their desert eyes on…

Just more large So Cal homes with palms? No, I don’t get into wannabe Tahiti anymore than I do arcticism…so, look closer…
Spiky succulents pair well with softer green plants, then throw in that red succulent: coveted Sunset Zone 24 heats up, since it tends not to even get hot…
While La Jolla homes are not for everyone’s income, this person rewards the other half hitting the beach by a powerful, tight space garden…

Not everyone can buy from ads in the Robb Report, which may frequent that mailbox. But anyone can adapt this garden’s festive look and water-thrifty design, only with different plants…

WallColoredSpikes-LJ03Sml
Stop it, I like it…red, soft, spikes…ouch in a good way…
They only average 9″ of rain / year nearer the coastline in San Diego County, frosts are very light and rarely occur more than a couple times in 5-10 years…
More red succulence, showing off in front of green succulence…contrast trumps weedy tapestries most every time…
Since seeing mini-jungles in a couple Florida gardens, I like this layered look…the cool-water coast of San Diego pulls it off well, too…more artful than the usual chlorotic queen palm-boulder-plumeria-fescue lawn…
TerracedGoodBad-LJ01Sml
Tighter front gardens than you might think, the slope is nicely retained with matching walls…only the lawn on the nearer terrace is a loser. But not to worry…
How about this front garden? Well-designed…anyone can do a local theme off of this study in form, informality, and tight space.

 

I’m wondering if they have a private garden behind that Spanish or Mexican Colonial facade? Maybe I should look more closely at this in a future post…even if I didn’t get an inside look.

The beach at Windansea was nice, too…

Nice, even though I can’t surf, a wahine by my side or watching from the beach…or a volleyball game among friends…or a taco shop on hand :-)

Advertisements

7 Replies to “The Front: Small But Potent”

  1. I love that next-to-last garden, with the warm sunset-colored walls of the home as a backdrop. Looks like a nice trip.

    An epic trip; that front garden / wall you mention must cause near-wrecks!

    Like

  2. Sigh… Those gardens are succulent in every sense of the term. We lived in NoCal for a couple of years and it was the first and only time I had a chance to garden without worries of killing frost. What an absolute treat that was and one I didn’t fully appreciate until after we’d moved back to Texas.

    Now I’m experimenting with using succulents year round as companion plantings with bluebonnets and evening primrose in areas I can protect from freezes and browsing deer. Aside from those two threats they are all beautifully tough customers!

    I think for the rest of us, there are some soft succulents, especially for pots (like I use annuals in the desert), to bring them up more to eye level and keep from the *&^ rabbits. Your idea sounds very good to mix with annuals or even perennials. Hard succulents (Nolina, Dasylirion, Opuntia) we got, but we have to look to parts of South Africa for the soft succulents, esp places with hot summers and cold winters…not many!

    Like

  3. “…activists hippies in suits” Priceless. Yet another Cristianism I’m going to steal. I like the last house too. If PDX can have roses, I imagine it’s OK for SD.

    Just slipped off my tongue. That last house probably causes wrecks for those hortisurferdudes!

    Like

  4. Enjoyed seeing these nice gardens. A walk along the street is always fun especially in the richest of neighborhoods. The Robb Report is a nice touch. There are only a few places where you can duplicate those plant combinations. SA is too hot and too cold for those.

    I couldn’t resist the Robb Report, probably a few subscribers on their block! Yes, duplication only goes for 1% of the world, at most…but adaptation, that can be fun…mostly!

    Like

  5. I love that last front garden…but you could have guessed that.

    Ha ha, I took 2 more photos of it, but since I’m 5 minutes away, I may have to do a quick closer-in visit…

    Like

  6. The plant pairings create some beautiful contrasts. Color helps so much here, but the texture and scale work for them as well.

    As much as I like that last front garden and the accent of color the rose adds, it strikes the wrong note to me. I just don’t think of roses in that cool, slightly misty climate. I’d sure like to be more familiar with Sunset zone 24!

    Yes, their use (and availability) of small plants in a small space is refreshing, too! I agree since mildew alone even with their their Aug-Nov warmth (75-85 often), makes it a maint. issue. But like some in San Diego, they may even plant them as annuals, as they do azaleas…

    Like

Comments are closed.