October 26, 2010 by Robin Plaskoff Horton
Once inside this LA canyon urban garden, you become almost unaware of the sound of traffic whizzing by right outside the gate. Only a few minutes from the hustle and bustle of big city streets and the elegant storefronts of Rodeo Drive, this bucolic enclave offers a bit of solitude and a place to hide away from it all.
The Spanish style house is surrounded by ferns, ivy, and all variety of plant life overflowing from every corner. The tiled patios beckon to the home’s stylistic origins, chosen by the owner in part as a nod to her own small bit of Spanish heritage.
This garden’s designer works hard keeping up the plantings and often changes things up as she does in the house’s interior. She gets tired of things. I know this as the gardener is my stepmother. My father enjoys the fruits of his wife’s labors, but he does not water, prune, or otherwise lift a finger in the space, for which my stepmom is grateful. Dad admits he is as good in the garden as he is in the kitchen where he can boil water and sometimes make coffee, but that’s pretty much it.
I like to wander around and enjoy the various “rooms.” Every time I visit, it’s different.
My stepmom combs tag sales and flea markets picking up things to accent the garden. When her stash gets too big, she has her own tag sale. And the cycle continues.
The garden’s upper level features a small blue tiled hot tub that came with the house. The brick surround was added later.
Even the birds are welcome to stay awhile.
The red tiled front patio is so full, I had to walk sideways to get around the center part. Anywhere something will grow, there is something planted.
A spot for feathered friends and a glass door to the feathered nest…