The homeowners wanted to keep the guest house and main house spaces visually connected, but they liked the idea of keeping both spaces private, so designers added a small wall made of stucco to complement the design of both homes. Then, they lined the crushed limestone walkway with desert plants to create a connected, elegant design for both houses.
To give these homeowners a place to eat outside, designers added an dining area with a grid of concrete pavers based on the dimensions of the back of the house, creating planting beds in the negative space. Designers also added low, concrete walls to frame the seating area, as well as darker gravel to give contrast to the concrete, breaking up the monochromatic expanse.
When planting a hanging terrarium, it is vital to create a mini environment where all the plants flourish equally, says Joyce Mason-Monheim, floral director for Accent Decor and a member of the American Institute of Floral Designers. The orb-shaped hanging vase planted with succulents shows how you should use all succulents or all cactus in the planting because they require the same amount of light and water.
Holographic pool tile shines above the negative edges of this pool, catching the eye with sparks of color. A natural rock retaining wall ties over the pool with a built in waterfall feature flowing into the pool. A desert inspired planted section separates the pool wall from the second tier retaining wall with neutral concrete blocks and black fencing.
Incorporate succulents, such as Haworthia minima (left), a small evergreen plant with hard, fleshy blue-green leaves that are covered in white tubercles. It produces white flowers with pink tips. Blumz by JRDesigns, a floral and event design company, has placed it beside a potted cactus.
This modern, Southwestern style home gets a front yard makeover. The homeowners are concerned with water conservation in the summer months, so the designers used their desert surroundings to inspire their design. Because of the dry soil, erosion is always a worry, so a gabion wall was installed in the back of yard to help stave off any erosion issues. Flowerbeds were then added around the steps leading to the front door. Those beds were filled with desert plants that can easily handle the lack of water they will receive in the summer months. Then, landscapers added stones instead of mulch or grass to fill in the beds and in between the driveway and the stairs to keep down the reliance on water and to give the design a desert feel.
Combination planters let you add color to even the smallest space, and succulents grow slowly enough that they won’t overtake the tight quarters. An eye-catching mix of succulents grows well together, needing the same care regime: little water, high light and a coarse, cactus-type soil mix. When you create an indoor container garden, make sure plants have similar light and water needs.
How gorgeous is this combo of copper pot, chunky purple amethyst, hawthoria 'Zebra' and sempervivum? To create this look, cut your hen and chicks (sempervivum) and position at an angle in the pot, filling your container with cactus potting mix. Rocks at the bottom of the container help with drainage. End the design with your amethyst and moss. Don't forget to soak your hen and chicks every two weeks and replace. Lightly water your hawthoria with about one tablespoon of water every two weeks.
Keep in mind, says Fried, that you can make your succulent designs even more easy care by using succulent cuttings rather than planting them in containers. Cut where the root begins, says Fried and position in your container. Cuttings can be easily changed out. Just remember to soak your cuttings every two or three weeks in a bowl of water and they should last for months without roots. When you are done with your arrangement you can place the cutting in soil in a container or in your backyard and "watch it root and grow" says Fried.