Rethink the driveway

Add beauty, function, and abundant warmth to your front yard with 3 smart solutions

Rethink the driveway after

Chris Leschinsky

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Diagonals make the most of narrow figures ― even twig-thin supermodels look curvier in bias-cut garments. The same holds true for skinny gardens.

Before the renovation, the 37½-foot-wide property in Los Osos, California, offered owners Rick and Sue Sparks little beyond parking space.

A driveway dominated the front yard, and hidden behind the fence was a garden so tiny that landscape architect Jeffrey Gordon Smith called it a "glorified doormat."

Working with landscape designer and contractor Kevin O'Donnell, Smith removed the fence, borrowed space from the driveway, and laid out the newly opened garden on a 45° angle.
The extra room allowed for a patio with a concrete firepit as a focal point. "Lighting it before guests arrive creates such a warm, inviting mood," Sue says.


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