Zen and the art of time management

Centennial, Colorado

"Garden projects keep me off the psychiatrist's couch," says dentist Kent Sellers. With the pressure of staying on schedule all day long, Sellers craves slower-paced, contemplative tasks on his days off. Designing and building Japanese-inspired gates for his tea garden, for instance.

This gate, one of three in his garden, is made of Russian olive branches and twigs from trees cut down along Interstate 25 in Denver when sound-barrier walls went in. "I'd been looking for wood with lots of joints and curves to inspire me," he says. "When I pulled over and saw these, I knew they were perfect."

Sellers doesn't re-create any particular Japanese style. Instead, he lets the wood dictate the design. Because each junction is screwed in by hand, the gates are labor-intensive. Not that Sellers minds. Sometimes, time is not an issue.