Bland LandscapeHomeowners Dylan and Patricia Skerrett have a rectangular backyard that's overgrown with bamboo and ivy. Landscape designer Jeff Allen gives their yard French Country flair with raised planting beds, a stucco-finished retaining wall and bold accents.
The Skerretts are tired of staring at their concrete and cinder block-filled yard everyday. They want to redesign the space and bring some life into the boring yard. In addition, the couple wants a more functional space so that their son, Julian, has a place to play.
Elegant SettingLandscape designer Jeff Allen places two salvaged windows against the fence to act as a simple greenhouse for lettuce and other delicate greens. To update the retaining wall, the crew covers the cinder blocks with a stucco treatment and installs a redwood cap, which also serves as an excellent place to sit. They tear out sections of concrete for mounds of earth that feature pear trees and creates gravel walkways by the house to add curves to the lawn.
Concrete BackyardThe cinder block wall takes up a lot of space and makes the yard feel very linear. They'd like to break up the space with some unique elements and a variety of plants. Patricia loves to cooks and wants to create an edible garden full of herbs, fruits and vegetables.
Edible GardenThe crew built steps into the center of the retaining to turn the raised section of the yard into an accessible garden. A series of fruit trees are planted in the raised bed, including an espaliered apple tree, which yields six different kinds of apples. The worn-out garden beds are replaced with a galvanized tub and recycled wine barrels where the family grows some favorite vegetables and herbs. The edible gardens will serve the family year-round and be easy to maintain in the new containers.
Perfect Space for RelaxingThey create a seating platform from the old wooden deck by the back door. A ladder built from leftover tree branches is perfect for Julian to access the deck. Allen leaves a square of concrete to act as a patio, where freshly painted weathered lawn furniture adds a lot of color to the space.