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Mediterranean Landscape Design

See how this Mediterranean landscape design uses water-wise plants, olive trees and seat walls

A video transcript featuring Ive Haugeland, Shades of Green Landscape Architecture

This is a beautiful older property with a big house, a lot of mature trees around it, and big lawn areas. We redesigned the pool area in the backyard, and then we created this olive garden. The challenge was to make the new and the old go together and make our design so it was a little more contemporary but in a Mediterranean classical way.

Paving materials We used several types of paving and materials in this garden. And a lot of it has to do with textures and colors. The colors are all tans. We used travertine for the pool area (see Travertine Pool Decks). For the olive tree garden, we used a lot decomposed granite and gravel to get that soft look. And also it's a permeable surface.

The first area to undergo renovation was the existing pool and the backyard patio. The patio and the pool area were resurfaced with the same travertine paving and connected with some long steps.

Defining separate areas Low walls define the separate areas and are used to mitigate the grade differences. Classical elements like stacked stone walls have crisp, contemporary travertine caps. A lion's head medallion became a focal point. Bold stripes of lawn and paving makes a gradual transition between the new patios and the existing lawns. These stripes vary in width and are mirrored on the other side of the pool.

Ideal for lounging and entertaining The clients are a couple with grownup kids, so on a day-to-day basis they use the yard for lounging and relaxing. They also have a lot of visitors with children and grandchildren. But they also use the property for big parties. They host some big benefit parties a couple of times a year. They had the wedding of one of the daughters here. So this place can hold up to 400 people.

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