A patio off the side yard acts as an extension to the family room.
RESOURCES FOR SUSTAINABLE GARDENING
Santa Monica's Green Gardens Tour Committee suggests these helpful websites.
Water-conserving landscape tips from Southern California water agencies include a list of 1,200 plant species suitable for the region's gardens, water-conservation ideas, watering calculator, rebate offers, and more.
An eco-activist zine.
Berkeley author Louise Lacey covers the basics on growing native plants.
Inspiration to replace your turf includes a photo gallery of low-water front yards. It's sponsored by Middlebrook Gardens, a San Jose garden-design firm specializing in natives gardening and sustainable practices.
County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works' research tool for green homes and gardens.
A zine for environmental news and commentary.
The committee also recommends visiting Santa Monica's demonstration gardens (free; 1718 and 1724 Pearl St.), where California-native and traditional landscape designs are compared. The native garden uses 80 percent less water than the traditional garden, and cuts maintenance costs and green waste in half.
Design: Stephanie Wilson Blanc, Pacific Palisades (310/459-3131)