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Stairway to heaven
Photo by Stefan Thuilot; written by Kathleen N. Brenzel

Stairway to heaven

Decomposed-granite steps edged with concrete nudge this path upslope in a backyard in Portola Valley, California. Because the steps taper from 8 feet wide at the bottom to 3 feet wide at the top, they appear to cover more ground than they do. (A Cor-Ten steel wall enhances the effect; from a 4 1/2-foot base, it shrinks to 2 feet high at the top.) Dasylirion and dwarf lavender line the path.

Design: Stefan Thuilot, Thuilot Associates, Berkeley (thuilot.com)

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