Seattle Landscape Architect Brooks Kolb’s Laurelhurst Hillside Garden was featured in the January 27, 2013 issue of the Seattle Times’ “Pacific NW” magazine. “Growing Up Gracefully: Gentle Curves and Masses of Plants Keep a Garden Looking Good” was the way Times writer Valerie Easton titled the piece.
Quoting from Valerie Easton’s article,
“A great view is about all Kevin and Jean Kelly’s Laurelhurst garden had going for it when landscape architect Brooks Kolb first saw it. The topography was precipitous, the plantings worn, the steep steps down to the garden cracked and broken. The handsome old house not only lacked connection to the garden, it turned its back to it…”
“Kolb started by designing an entry terrace to connect the old house to its new garden. A geotech warned against filling in with heavy soil, so Kolb used foam to raise the grade about a foot. Now the expanded porch steps graciously down to a terrace at lawn level. Kolb replaced the chute-like stairs with a gentle S-curve of steps that wind their way through fragrant shrubbery….”
“How to create a garden that’s tactile, scented and seasonal, yhet so easy to care for? ‘The garden isn’t Noah’s ark, there aren’t just two of anything,’ says Kolb of his strategy of massing grasses, prennials and small shrubs…”
“Both Kelly and Kolb emphasize the importance of teamwork in the garden’s success. Kelly had a vision, Kolb realized it, and gardener Eileen O’Leary stepped in to maintain the place. ‘Gardens evolve,’ says Kolb, who includes a yearly post-evaluation with all his landscapes.”
Here’s a link to the full article: http://seattletimes.com/html/pacificnw/2020148828_pacificpnwl27.html.
The project team included Dochnahl Construction (concrete and foam work); Gardenstone Masonry (Wilkeson sandstone masonry); Clayton E. Morgan Landscaping (softscape.)
The S-curve sandstone stair from below