Archive for the 'Landscape' Category

Concrete Trough Water Feature

Friday, July 25th, 2008

Our backyard water feature is still in progress, but here are the steps that got us to this point:



First sketches of a water trough and how it might tie into the retaining wall. We had to step down the wall and already had these notches where the level changes happened. It seemed one of those “aha” moments when the thought occurred to put a steel channel spout at the notch above the water trough.

Here’s my first sketch trying to work out how the water circulation would work.

I faxed the sketch to Teresa at Hill Country Water Gardens and she graciously fine tuned it and sent it back to me. I had thought to run the pvc inside the concrete but Teresa’s recommendation was to run it all on the surface for easy access. It definitely cuts down the “oops” factor — concrete is pretty permanent. I had also thought the pump could be behind the retaining wall but it turns out it has to be inside the water and also has an optional filter attached to it.

I especially like my note, “they have a lady who can come out and do this…”


Here are the guys pouring concrete.

On a different note, on the tv show “Bones” there was a great moment when someone refers to concrete as cement and Brennan corrects him, saying no, cement is a component of concrete.

I always want to correct people when they say cement but usually let it go because nobody cares. The guy’s response on the show is exactly what I would expect in real life — annoyance, bewilderment (like, why are you wasting my time) and disgust — well, maybe not that bad.

Hill Country Water Gardens

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2008

Here are some pictures from our visit to Hill Country Water Gardens. The lily pads are so adorable.


These are HUGE – like 2 ft diameter and the stalk and underside have thorny barbs. They’re pretty amazing.



They sell koi and goldfish (above). I believe the difference is the koi just keep growing and growing.



Crossing the bridge.

Gardens and Succulents!

Monday, July 21st, 2008

Ever since I posted those pictures by Alex I’ve been reluctant to post anything else… it seeemed to me that nothing would top those pictures as far as our house was concerned. Anyway, there hasn’t been much going on either.

But here I am again!~ I have created a new page called “Glamour Shots” where Alex’s photos will have a permanent home and I am going to get this blog moving again.

Exciting news is that we are going to be on this fall’s AIA Homes Tour! More to follow on that later.

This upcoming event has finally kicked Scott and me into some action, especially regarding the landscaping. This is the landscaping plan that we are working with and Colleen from Red Wheelbarrow will help us implement it.


I’ve also ordered a tray of 20 mixed succulents from Annie Appleseed in Pleasant Hill, CA. These will give you an idea of what they will look like. Like candy!


Today Scott and I went out to Hill Country Water Gardens and purchased the water pump. They have several beautiful ponds set up with lots of great water plants and koi and goldfish as well. If you are thinking of putting in a water feature it is well worth a trip up to Cedar Park.

Our big decision is whether to have a living pond (w/ water lilies and goldfish) or a fountain that will feature the water and water movement as the star attraction.

I will post some pics of the ponds later.

Lastly, here’s just a random (and precious!) picture of Rocket’s damp little nose. It wouldn’t be out of place in that succulent garden I think.

A bunch of photos

Sunday, June 24th, 2007

Right now on my laptop I have a backlog of photos documenting the orderly progression of the house construction. I had planned on posting them in sequential fashion, but you know what? I can’t even. (Read “even” as a verb please) This is a train that I am running alongside, that Scott and I will hopefully jump onto one of these days. I’ll be lucky to be able to throw in whatever I can through the window before then.

So in that spirit of “devil-may-care” and “omg it can all go to hell at any point,” here are a few photos:


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Patio Studies

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2007

We are looking at a couple of options for the Covered Patio. This area is directly outside of the Sunroom, and when you come out of the french doors down the steps you will be facing the outdoor fireplace. The question is what do we do on the ground?

*Here’s a link to an earlier sketch with more detail

Our first choice: all Leuders (Texas Limestone) in a stacked pattern – represented by all the beige areas in the sketch. It would look so pretty and with it all level like that we can definitely set up a ping pong table there!

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This sketch also shows another idea—to engage the back retaining wall with planters and a stone bench and also a set of steps going up to the shed.

Did I mention Leuders is expen$$ive? This will be about $20/sf. Ouch.

Okay, another idea (less expensive). Reduce the square footage of the paving and also install a border of concrete around the stone. Concrete is much less. Hmm, not so into that.

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The last thought was to put in a wood deck where the stone is shown in the first sketch. We can still have the planters and the bench and maybe some stone paving somewhere. We are definitely still thinking about this.