Sunday, August 7, 2011


Summer Project #1 ~ Japanese Garden Design

I finished the front lawn conversion this weekend. Instead of plants within the landscape I've decided to put them around the landscape. It has such a nice Japanese Garden feel to it that I need to leave the pattern intact. I might add plants next year. I LOVE Japanese Gardens like the famous Roanji Zen garden.

BACKGROUND: I don't normally use plastic in my landscapes, but since this was a slope I wanted to stop any washouts into the street.

PROBLEMS: I had to go back and lower the surface by a couple of inches so that the rocks would not roll onto the street. Nothing is wasted at Tropical Texana; all the soil will be put in a storage bin for use in pots.

Here's the finished project. The semi-circle echoes the larger circle of pavers seen in front of the house.
That silver plant is licorice plant (Helichrysum petiolare)  and it's very drought tolerant. I'm going to try and propagate it and use it around the agaves. It's made it through one hard freeze and two dry summers. I give it a 5 STAR rating!

FINAL TOUCHES:  I pushed the gravel aside and designed a 'sand stream' to give the piece some movement. I like to think of this as art more than lawn. I can put new patterns in the sand for people walking in the neighborhood.

BENEFITS: No mowing, no watering and it's enjoyable to view. 
Hope this gives you some ideas on what to do with drought stricken portions of your lawn. Thanks for stopping by.
David/ :-)


  1. I like it! I especially like your 'sand stream'. Looks very Japanese - and it will be fun to make different patterns in the sand!

  2. Wundervolle Arbeit David! ich bin total begeistert. Ich habe auch bereits zwei Gartenprojekte angelegt und beide sind jetzt nach einigen Jahren so richtig wundervoll geworden - umso begeisterter bin ich, dieses Blog von dir besucht zu haben. Deine Arbeiten sind kreativ und sehr inspirierend.

    ich werde wiederkommen, denn Garten ist meine zweite große Leidenschaft nach dem Fotografieren.

    liebe Grüße

  3. David, you did a lovely job on that! Hey, I have something for you here. Come by after work one day? E-mail me & let me know!

  4. I like it. Wow, talk about low maintenance and drought tolerant!

  5. Hey David, that looks great! I'm trying to work up a design to redo my front yard with less grass in mind. This drought has all of us rethinking our garden choices.


I always appreciate your comments & questions! Happy Gardening from David/ Tropical Texana

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