Taqueria style

Bold color and salvaged materials create an imaginative Tucson backyard

Photo: Terrence Mann

The funky ambience of Tucson's taco shops inspired Scott and Deirdre Calhoun to make imaginative use of bold colors and salvaged materials in their tiny 36- by 15-foot backyard. The focal point is an 8-foot-square steel ramada, designed by Scott and fabricated on-site. Concrete-reinforcing wire on the sides and top supports queen's wreath and other vines.

A collection of Mexican soda pop bottles dangle overhead, along with a disco ball made from snips of tin cans. The periwinkle blue fountain is Deirdre's contribution; she built a wooden box out of plywood and 2-by-4s and added a pond liner. Three recycled closet doors, decorated with Corona beer trays, act as a backdrop.

The checkerboard paving fits right into the theme: 4-inch-thick adobe bricks alternate with 4-inch-deep square pockets of decomposed granite. The pockets soak up and store precious rainfall.

DESIGN: Scott Calhoun, ZonaGardens, Tucson (520/867-8038)

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