Bel Air home and garden now complementary

Sunset  – November 24, 2004

Garden renovation: Los Angeles, California

The spectacular makeover of this Bel Air property stopped jurors in their tracks. “It’s a bold house and a bold garden,” declared one juror. “When the design of the house and garden work this well together,” said another, “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.”

The garden’s strength comes from creative use of materials and prominent shapes–the result of collaboration between landscape designers Mia Lehrer, Alan Bernstein, and Tim Parker and the house’s owner. A stone path interplanted with creeping thyme leads visitors to the front door through a dramatic curved wall that extends from the house’s interior. Large, sculptural blue-gray and yellow agaves saved from the old garden echo the building’s colors. A low-maintenance blue fescue lawn is surrounded by agaves, artemisia, feathery cassia, woolly grevillea, and other unthirsty plants.

In the back garden, where views of the city dominate, the infinity-edge pool and paving keep the design stark and clean. “This is a marriage that worked,” concluded one juror.

Designer: Mia Lehrer and Associates, Los Angeles (213/892-0009)

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