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Garden spotlight: Carmel Valley

This design in Carmel Valley does such a wonderful job of playing with color and texture that I thought it warranted a Project Spotlight. (Sadly, I can’t identify the designer because I don’t know who did it, but if anyone does, please let me know! I would love to credit them). A few things I especially like about this landscape:

– The color! Drought tolerant landscaping can’t be accused of being too grey when there are landscapes like this around. Reds, greens, blues, and all sorts of variegation- this is full of color!
– I like the course textures of the plant material with the Spanish Colonial architecture. The overall effect is both artistic and rustic.
– I like the match of the yellow and green variegated Aeonium with the yellow and green variegated flax.
– I like the pairing of Agonis flexulosa ‘Afterdark’ with its weeping burgundy foliage and the bolder red of the flax in front of it. Anyone care to identify the flax? Maybe Phormium ‘Amazing Red’?
– This garden makes great use of specimen succulents. These larger succulents can be hard to find. I like to check Rancho Soledad nursery in Rancho Santa Fe- not only do they have wonderful large specimens to chose from, but they also take you around their very large nursery in a golf cart, which I always find fun.

Sage Outdoor Designs is a San Diego landscape design firm. Kate
Wiseman, the Principal, has been a San Diego landscape designer
for the past ten years. Find out more at