We found out this week that we received a Gold award in the APLD’S International Landscape Design Awards. It is an incredible honor and professionally inspiring to have received any award let alone a gold. Only 8 gold awards were granted in the entire program and only one gold award in the category of small residential design for which Doug Myers of Fernhill Landscapes was awarded.
Landscape designs in six different categories were submitted from designers in this year’s professional program – residential, non-residential, small garden, show garden, planting design and specialty project. The criteria used to evaluate submissions included project impact, creativity, technical merit and planting design. The judging panel was comprised of highly respected experts in the field.
Blending contemporary forms and lush plantings, the design for the Sterling residence maximizes the sensory experience of the materials and planting from inside and outside the home. The garden occupies a courtyard framed by four interior walls. The home, built in 1948 was designed as a mid century modern smart house. The space inside the courtyard is 884 sq. ft. The clients list of needs and desires was brief. They wanted a space that would complement the mid century style and provide visual interest from inside the home.
The designer’s intent was to create a garden that would possess a clear sculptural quality and would be as visually striking from inside the home as it would be from inside the courtyard. The strategy behind the design was to use hardscape materials characterized by simple geometric forms and a planting palette that would emphasize form over color, and then to arrange the materials to achieve an interpretation of modern aesthetic.
The views from inside the homes three main living rooms present the garden as a graphic composition of space, hardscape materials and planting. Inside the courtyard the edges are defined by stone and planting. The floor is composed of rectangular slabs of Teakwood flagstone with a counterpoint of Mexican beach pebbles set within the joints and around the edges. Concrete along the edges of the Teakwood pads reduces migration of the modified stone and sand base. The contrast of the Mexican beach pebbles accentuates the pattern of the flagstone. The subtle sound of water spilling from the copper bowl and the reflective qualities of the water help to create an atmosphere of relaxation. The planting is composed of shades of green with white flowers in order to accentuate the graphic design. ‘Justin Brouwer’ Boxwood, ‘Sum and Substance’ Hosta, white Anemones, black bamboo and ornamental grasses contrast dramatically with the clean lines of the hardscape elements.