Thursday, July 29, 2010

Netafim for waterwise irrigation DIY

I spent some time this week playing with Netafim and it has me intrigued enough that I am contemplating switching out my front yard irrigation. For those of you who don't know Netafim, it is a company that specializes in low water irrigation systems. Their popular product, Techline CV, is a series of interconnected underground flexible piping with built in valves at every drip whole. The pipes connect with a simple snap together method that is under so much tension it is impossible to pull apart (definitely the lego's of the low water irrigation world).

To install it, you connect it to your existing irrigation valves with a new filter and pressure reducer, then snap together the "net". The whole net goes underground about six inches and emits water very slowly to saturate the root zone of the plants. If you space the net correctly (for shrub areas about 18" from pipe to pipe) you get a very even saturation of water. You cut the loss down from evaporation and don't have to deal with snaking dripper lines all over the garden.

I like the system for quite a few reasons: it is underground, so less likely to get damaged during weeding; it has been around for a long time, so tried and true; it holds the water in the pipes when it is off, so it works for gentle slopes without over-watering the bottom; and it is something a chick like me can put together herself without any of the blue irrigation glue.

So I have to ask: Anyone have any bad experiences with it? If so, leave me a comment so I can look into it!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Modern landscape design in Cardiff

I came across this landscape in the back streets of Cardiff and it is everything I love about an artistic and modern succulent garden:
- It embraces color with large mass plantings that catch your eye.
- It has variety without having too much variety.
- It pairs fascinating colors and textures so that you want to stare at it for hours.
- It is also immaculately cared for.

I do not know who the designer was on this one so if anyone knows, please comment on this post and I'll share it.

Here are some of the plants you can see in these two photos:
(Upper) Red: Leucodendron 'Safari Sunset', Ice Blue groundcover: Scenecio mandralascae, pale green groundcover: Scenecio serpens, background blue cacti: Agave americana
(Lower) Tree: Dracaena draco, grey grass: Festuca ovina glauca, orange: Euphorbia 'Sticks on Fire'

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

A succulent Garden San Diego style

This tassely wonderfulness is actually the flower of a very common succulent: Aeonium. Succulents don't get a lot of good press about their flowers, so when I came across this one in Golden Hill, I had to stop and snap a photo of it. Yes, it is green instead of some bright and flashy color, but just for the Doctor Seuss quality of it, it gets my thumbs up!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Craftsman Fence

Just a quick image for today of a lovely little fence I came across in Northpark. I'm just a sucker for cute Craftsman details. Now, if only the fire hydrant was restored to its original brass (one or two of them around town are)!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

When restraint pays off

I adore this front yard in Mission Hills and have been meaning to show it off to y'all for some time now.

There are a lot of things I like about it (whoever trims those Chinese Elms deserves a medal for it) but the one thing I wanted to talk about today is designing a garden using only a single flower color. In this case they used white, arguably the most elegant and understated choice. It contrasts wonderfully with the clean greens and pulls everything together into a single composition.

Most of these are very common plants, like the Lantana 'White Lightning' in the foreground, 'Iceberg' Roses, and 'Tiny Towers' Italian Cypress, but the combination of them is just flawless. If anyone knows who designed this, please leave a comment and let us know!

It takes a lot of restraint to limit yourself to one flower color, but it is a simple way to get a designer look, with or without a designer. This is absolutely a look you can duplicate at home! If you don't like white, how about red?...