A garden-buddy tipped me off to a fine new climate-appropriate front yard project nearby and I went to see it.
This is not that project. I admired the fine, thoughtful, appropriate one next door, then like moth to flame, this blogger went straight for the white gravel next door.
This low slung ranch-style house circa 1960 has been given a recent remodel in the mid century modern style so popular at the moment.
I found a google street view image of the property from 2007. It looks as though it had been recently updated then as well:
Two renovations on, a patch of '60s-era Ivy remains. Funny how things get left.
As much as I love Alluadia procera--just...no...not here. It's not a plant with clean lines at its base, and large specimens at the Huntington show a need for steel supports. An Aloidendron (Aloe) barberae, but out from the home, closer to the block wall-lette would have been better. (and what's with those wall-ettes? Are they too proportionally skimpy?)
Just. Not. Right. The Aeoniums need some love, too, after that hot summer.
I think this is Agave tequiliana; Gentry thought its separation from A. augustifolia as a species was only nominal. Thrilling blue color. This bit almost works...
...however, Agave tequiliana suckers prolifically, always a problem unless you want a cattle enclosure, or, you know, tequila. Meticulous removal of suckers a must in a minimal landscape, and precise placement of plants required?
The coral orange of the Euphorbia agrees with the orange edges of the Aeonium, but the pots placed as they are doesn't work for me. You artistic design-gifted people--how would you have done it?
Please hide the light cord under the gravel. Please.
A minimalist landscape demands excellent maintenance, doesn't it? This needs love. White gravel, dirty, is even worse than white gravel, clean.The color of the door is pretty, and the metal thingy on the wall is cool. Sanseveria was a good choice for the planter, but maybe not that Sanseveria. The planter's edge painted the same grey as the roof, that works. Some things work here, except everything has to work in this kind of styling.
The lesson for me here is that a minimalist design must be absolutely nailed in every detail, and exquisitely maintained. Minimalist that is too minimal looks cheap. Sleek should be sleek.
The blinding white paint blazes like a spot light in the neighborhood. A ranch house in a neighborhood of ranch houses is not an Eichler. It's a Mom wearing a Lady Gaga costume to her daughter's soccer game. Another reno in this house's future. Mid-century Modern won't be "in" forever.
All in all, fascinating. What do you think?