Steeled to perfection

Rusted steel lends this landscape a unique look

Steeled to perfection

Richly colored rusted steel is used in place of wood throughout the garden. Below, a 2-inch-thick steel plate edges a raised bed.

Saxon Holt

Yountville, CA ― In any garden, details make the difference between a good landscape and a great one. In Steven and Kimberly Cook's garden, designed by Jack Chandler, an unusual collection of rusted steel elements―including an arbor, retaining walls, light fixtures, and sculptures―creates a bold statement.

"The rusted steel gives the garden a warm, cozy feel," remarked a juror. "It's not at all cold or industrial-looking."

Chandler, who makes furniture and sculptures in addition to designing landscapes, had used scrap steel in his work for years. But this was his first attempt to use it throughout the garden in place of wood or other materials.

 

In spite of the logistical challenges (the 2-inch-thick steel plates used as retaining walls required a crane to set them in place), the use of steel was very successful. Fortunately, the expense of the crane was offset by the low cost of the salvaged materials, which should last many years longer than wood.

DESIGN: Jack Chandler & Associates, Yountville, CA (707/944-8352)

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http://www.sunset.com/garden/landscaping-design/steeled-to-perfection-00400000020030/