Take a tour of a clever Santa Fe garden designed for tranquility
Aria Ponciroli’s backyard is a peaceful retreat.
Click ahead to see how she did it with no-fuss plantings, cooling shade, and optical illusions.
Faced with moss rock, a raised bed hugs the far end of Aria Ponciroli's backyard. The bed steps down gradually, allowing the tallest section of wall to be an inviting focal point.
A meandering path encircles a central planting island. Crunchy pea gravel gives the path texture, and Boral bricks in Savannah Brown are designed to slow the journey.
A Japanese pagoda tree (Sophora japonica) is perfect for shading a small garden, thanks to its pleasing structure, moderate size, and willingness to coexist with understory plants.
Most of the plants ― including coral-flowered 'Top Notch' rose and sunset hyssop, greenish ‘Autumn Joy’ sedum, and pink penstemon ― are no-fuss, low-water types.
Thick carpets of ice plant (Delosperma congestum) spill out of beds here and there, adding a little gentle messiness to an otherwise orderly garden.
Design Monika Hellwegen and Azul Cobb, Carlotta from Paradise, Santa Fe (505/983-1109)