Each project presents me with its own set of challenges. Part of the fun is to solve these issues, working closely with my clients. Here are some end results from our collaboration.
McClean, VA Garden / Wall / Patio
An overgrown hillside could not be utilized—or even accessed. After the site was cleared, a stone staircase was added for passage from the house to the lower garden. A retaining wall was built to flatten the lower area for family use. The wall is also used for seating. The patio, play area and surrounding woodland plantings complete the tableaux.
McClean, VA Garden / Patio
A new garage and an addition to the house brought about the need for some garden work—and presented the opportunity for a unique space for relaxation and entertaining. After scooping out the hillside, retaining/seating walls were installed—built using a semi-dry method—and a stone patio was put in. Steps to an upper garden area add access and a sense of mystery. The owner's outstanding collection of mature azaleas was moved around to enhance the stone work and to capture the long season of bloom for his and his guests’ enjoyment.
Waterfall at Woodland Cottage
This hillside at my house, Woodland Cottage, was shored-up by an old, railroad tie retaining wall and planted with pachysandra. It screamed for a water feature (and I wanted one), so that’s what it got. The visual stimulation, sound of the water and wildlife the water attracts all give me great joy and pleasure.
Japanese Entry Garden in Arlington, VA
Japanese heritage and a love for tranquil spaces set the groundwork for this garden. And the clients wanted a water feature. To expand this tiny space, the water feature was stretched into a horseshoe shape. Visitors cross a stone bridge to get to the front door. The owners can sit on a bench in their front entry and peacefully pass the time.
Courtyard in Historic Old Town, Alexandria, VA
This courtyard, in the historic Old Town district of Alexandria, cried out for renewal. This was achieved by introducing stone to offset the existing brick, and by borrowing the look of the gardens of Charleston, South Carolina. Old Town’s proximity to the Potomac River, and the gardens surrounding brick walls, ensure a mild climate—one where more tender plants can be utilized. Access to this lovely garden is only obtainable through the residence, so installation took extra time and care.