Posts by SteveD

Hillside Residence In San Jose, CA

»Posted on Nov 7, 2017 in Gallery | Comments Off on Hillside Residence In San Jose, CA

This backyard was all about entertaining family and friends – the view was a bonus! We took a disjointed existing backyard during a time of extensive interior renovation and completely re-worked the exterior.  Included in the design is a new outdoor kitchen, shade structure, patios, fireplace, pool, spa, planting and lawn. We editing existing trees to provide visual corridors and added trees to eclipse undesirable views. All this and being mindful of the rare opportunity to include much of the Santa Clara Valley below and the Santa Cruz Coast range beyond as the backdrop to summer evening entertainment....

read more

Small Stuff

»Posted on Dec 21, 2016 in Blog | Comments Off on Small Stuff

Probably, because I’m a Landscape Architect I get annoyed by ugly stuff in the landscape. I mean the small commonplace stuff, visually unappealing yet considered normal because it’s all around us. I’d like to think that most of us would appreciate beauty in the built environment if more of its potential could be on display. But, what about the small stuff?  Things like litter, graffiti or even ugly lawn headers that mysteriously rise out of the ground but just left year after year. But my gripe today is the attack on landscape plants at the hands of the Mow n Blow brigade.   How many shrubs and ornamental grasses are scalped each day by the fleet of power busily trimming them into tight little balls, squares, pyramids and other ridiculous forms! It doesn’t...

read more

Autumn’s In The Air, Again.

»Posted on Oct 7, 2016 in Blog | Comments Off on Autumn’s In The Air, Again.

I love these warm, late summer days and the lengthening shadows of winter to come. I have projects on the board (because I hand draft), I’m working with great clients and the concepts we’ve developed are really exciting but I’m not writing about that. Starting in fall and into the Christmas Season I sharpen my carving knives and fashion characters from sweet potatoes at night after a day’s work in the studio. I touched on this and my book, “Twisted Taters” in an earlier blog if you’re interested. Anyway, I haven’t been near the potato bin yet but I’m posting a few of my ‘guys’ from last year and a couple cottages I carved the year before – hope you enjoy them.  ...

read more

What to do with what’s left over?

»Posted on Sep 24, 2016 in Blog | Comments Off on What to do with what’s left over?

We have a compact back yard and in a few places, really just hot sunny slivers of dirt, there’s little room to grow anything that won’t outgrow the space quickly or just give up from the heat or lack of water. What to do with what’s left over? Well, every year we end up with more potted succulents then the year before so I snipped some offsets, dredged some river rock from the pond, added a few boulders and composed a vignette in an otherwise hot, sunny sliver of dirt. Next year I’ll pull them up roots and all (these happen to be Echiveria ‘afterglow’) cut them down to a small florette again and replant – real simple. Another example: two years ago our daughter dropped off a few Agave pups, well they happened to fit...

read more

One man’s garbage….

»Posted on May 10, 2016 in Blog | Comments Off on One man’s garbage….

I own a small fragment of a large concrete fountain, actually three useless fragments. I picked them up years ago at Sylvestri, the statuary company down the street from the Cow Palace where Lois and I was heading one day to see the exhibits at the San Francisco Garden Show – I liked the lion’s heads cast into the pieces and Sylvestri was glad to get rid of the garbage. I epoxied the pieces and set the finished work in my backyard to be viewed as a buried “archaeological find” only partially exposed. In reality, what you see is all there is! Just a small unexpected detail which occasionally elicits a glance or comment. Didn’t cost...

read more