So, I'm thinking of subtitling my blog "Better Late Than Never." These are my pictures from the Inside Austin Gardens tour on April 19, specifically the garden of Jenny and David Stocker, where I blew through 2 USB cards and my fully-charged camera battery. (It was just that awesome.)
Uploading pictures to Blogger for this post has been an epic test of the strength of my character, and I concede that I am but scissors to Blogger's rock. So, disclaimer: I will be wandering through this garden willy-nilly, as I have given up posting the scenes in the order you would see them while walking through the garden.
In random order, then, here are two pictures of the lovely vegetable garden, for my food-growing friends:
A shady nook. Doesn't it look like it would be nice and cool here even when it's 100 degrees outside? I like how the fig ivy completely covers the wall and cuts any glare from the stone underneath, which cools everything down. It makes the walls seem to recede and the space seem larger.
The formal shape of the swimming pool gives you a place to rest your eyes. I love that agave, which practically functions as sculpture. Anyone know what kind it is?
Courtyard with square pavers. The friends I dragged along with me particularly liked this area.
Another shot of the pool in the middle of a field of wildflowers.
The circle garden with Knockout roses. I took many pictures of this area, but the sun burned everything out and this is the only picture with colors that didn't hurt my eyes.
Looking from the Knockout bed towards the house, the circle motif is continued by the round patio right off of the back door:
And round pavers in the path surrounding the Knockout bed:
Concrete pavers in the first courtyard. I like the scale here. The pavers are big enough that you don't have to worry about stepping on plants, and also big enough that you can see the shape even with plants blurring the square, formal edges. I also like how this photo shows the horizontal lines across the landscape, edges of pavers and then the edges of the steps. It's a nice contrast to the round shapes of the plants, and leads your eye and then your feet into the next room:
The wild-looking mediterranean entrance courtyard:
I like the rustic stairs as you enter the first of the courtyards from the driveway-- the rough stairs echo the exposed stone of the Balcones Escarpment and thus help the the house blend into its surroundings:
Dry creek in the entrance courtyard. I wonder how much of this is functional?
Another dry creek, this one seen from the driveway. I love how lush and cool and green it looks, and how it draws your eye into the woods:
Another view, another dry stream. All of these dry streams reminded me of MSS's post about the difficulties of keeping these areas looking appealing and free of leaves and weeds:
A pot of aloe, set on a rock wall. I wish I'd had a shot that included the natural woods in the background, because the dry, dead junipers contrasted quite well with the green fleshiness of the aloe.
I also liked how the sedum grew out the bottom of this window basket. I bet that no drop of water is wasted this way.
And in order to put this all in context, here's a shot of the natural woods around the property. As you can see, Jenny and David Stoker are gardening on the outskirts of Mordor. I'm especially impressed with what they've accomplished when I see it in this context.
Word on the street says that, other than the stucco, the Stokers did all of the hardscaping themselves. Holy crap. Having accomplished such a huge project so well, it wouldn't surprise me to hear that they're superheros. Can't you just see it? Jenny and David Stoker: they fight crime!