Outdoor Spaces: Before & After


BEFORE

AFTER

BEFORE

AFTER

“Pusch-ing” the Envelope
Photography courtesy of Sven Gunn
A homeowner wanted an efficient outdoor living space for family and friends to enjoy their great views of Pusch Ridge.

Before:
The site lacked cohesion, with a random mixture of plants, gravel groundcover and boulders. Poor drainage also was problematic. A small spa area with attached water feature was the only item retained.

After:
This landscape renovation included the entire backyard. New flagstone hardscape was installed. The covered porch extension made room for a dining area. The existing spa and deck was extended with additional flagstone. Large pots for winter annuals were placed in various focal areas. Brightly painted raised planters along the existing perimeter wall offer a dramatic contrast to seasonal plantings. Berms and swales provided a solution to the drainage issues. Several new features, such as an outdoor kitchen with smoker and barbecue, a firepit and a three-tiered fountain, added to the overall plan.

Source:
Designer: Sven Gunn Designs
Sonoran Gardens Landscape Design & Construction
www.sonorangardens.com


Paving the Way to Functionality
Photography by Robin Stancliff
Rather than devise a quick fix to correct their landscaping deficits, these homeowners opted for creating a greatly expanded entertaining space.

Before:
The homeowners wanted to extend the area around their existing pool. The original concrete deck was awkwardly shaped and cracked. Replacing and enlarging the deck area was only part of the overall solution.
The original footprint of the pool area was constructed very close to the house and the elevation difference created a severe drainage problem. There also were several safety issues that needed addressing.
Overall, the landscape lacked adequate space to lounge by the pool and entertain guests.

After:
The new design redirected rainwater away from the house. A gradual slope replaced some unsafe steps. To increase the patio area, the new hardscape plan included the installation of various-sized Belgard pavers in a Toscana Blend color palette. Similarly colored 12- x 16-inch pavers were added for the pool coping and patio edging, blending well with new rock mulch and large boulders.
The landscape plan included plant groupings of Aloe “Blue Elf.” This variety, native to Africa, was picked due to its ability to tolerate reflected heat and cold. Another species of aloe, Aloe striata, was used as a companion plant, chosen for its wider leaf structure and silvery green color. A large Yucca elata was retained, and Yucca gloriosa was added for its tropical look.

Source:
Paul Connolly, Sundrea Design Studio, www.sundreadesignbuild.com