Creative Landscape and Hardscape for a Steep Hillside Home
Creative Landscape and Hardscape for a Steep Hillside Home


– So when people came to our house, and I have a large family. I have six brothers and sisters, and nieces and nephews and all of that. And if they wanted to park, they would have to either park behind me on this little scary, narrow driveway, and then back out at
a dangerous angle, or, they’d have to park on the
street, which is dangerous. – The entrance was a mess. You couldn’t tell where
the front door was, the drive was cracked,
you could kill yourself trying to get to the house. – Because of the elevation changes in the street and the driveway,
it was really complex. There were a lot of different issues that had to be taken into account. – I had searched on the internet, how to deal with the slope, how to deal, what kind of plants, that kind of thing. And when I realized
that we had to redo it, I started to looking at retaining walls, and then I saw parts of the website Houzz, that told you who the
local contractors were, or the local designers, so that’s where I found Michael Glassman. – So we brought him in
for a one-hour consult. And I was kind of leery, for an hour, the guy doesn’t know the house, he doesn’t know us, what are we gonna get? Michael pulls up, and within minutes, he had had a vision of pretty
much what you see here today. – The biggest problem that we had was there’s no place for people to park. And in this case, I really felt that the parking bay was the best solution: a place for people to
park, get out of their car, away from the street, and be
able to get to the front door. – We had a hard time picturing
what it would look like. And so the bulldozer came, and it was just day after day of moving dirt. And as it started to evolve,
we saw what was perfect, which was we could fit two or three cars, right there, safely. People could get out,
come right up the stairs, they knew where to go,
there was no question about where the front of the house was now. – What was really interesting is they had a walkway to nowhere. If you can imagine, you
open the front door, it was a straight-out walkway that died at the retaining wall. You could only get to
it from the front door, but it’s like, it wasn’t
big enough to put a chair, it just went out to the retaining wall. You couldn’t get to it from the street. So we did a series of walls
and steps and landings, which really gave this wonderful, ample way to get to the front door. – And then, when we finally got down to what are we gonna do with these walls, and how are they gonna look? I said, well, would the steel look okay? And they said, the steel would be fabulous and amazing, as he says. But I said, well, what about price? So then we got the
contractor to work that out, and we’re so glad we did it. – You have this parking bay, you’ve got these
wonderful retaining walls, but the way that says, hey, here I am. We did these beautiful pedestals with these lime green pots,
that have a little bit of the house color kind of dribbling down, and planted them with
really exciting plants. There’s your focal point, there’s your thing that says, welcome. And then of course, lighting everywhere. So at night, you don’t have to stand there with a flashlight,
trying to find the steps. All every one of the rises
in the steps are illuminated, so that you park your car, get out, you can see where you’re
walking up the steps and you actually then can
also take in the landscape, cause we’ve got low voltage lighting, illuminating the fruitless olives, illuminating the crepe
myrtle, illuminating some of the most interesting features. – I wanted plants that
were something I like. I like unique plants, I don’t want what everybody else has, so
I looked on the website Houzz and I started saving photos,
and doing my ideabook, and then I would share that with Michael. – I used a lot with grays and greens, like for example, the fruitless olive. Very architectural, I also used
the silver mound artemisia. And then for an interesting texture, red hot pokers would give
you that shock of color. – Now when we drive up,
we’re really just kind of picturing ourselves, saying
geez, is that really our house? Is that the same house? The parking bay has been fabulous. It’s much more convenient, it’s safer, we can easily fit two cars there. We have a beautiful and safe
entrance up to the patio. – I think without Houzz, I don’t think it would have ended up the way it did. I think we would have had
maybe just a stucco wall with some roses and some plants
that would have been okay. But using the website, we were
able to really collaborate. We were able to look at different ideas, I could rule things out. I don’t have a lot of time to do all this, but I wanted to be a part of it and really be invested in it. And so, using Houzz, we could do that. – We came up with an idea to give the house some character, number one, by painting the house
and painting the trim. Number two, by using
contemporary materials, but keeping the integrity of the job, using drought-tolerant,
very interesting plantings. Design is about solving problems, but design is also about
utilizing architecture, utilizing finishes, utilizing materials, so it all gels together. – My wife has all of the
plants she could want, to work with, to watch them flower, and now we’re at the point
where we could sit back and really enjoy all the efforts that were put into this home.

10 thoughts on “Creative Landscape and Hardscape for a Steep Hillside Home”

  1. TRU Landscape Services says:

    Great landscaping advice for those living in the hills.

  2. Sheds Direct says:

    Landscaping could really transform and enhance the looks of your home. This video provides a perfect ideas and useful solutions regarding the problems of having a steep hillside yard. Nice information! 

  3. lunatuna79 says:

    With ample budget, the most amazing things are possible.

  4. Coco Wawa says:

    So wonderful…..i love the transformation.

  5. Dathan says:

    I always wonder why more isn't considered when a home is built in the first place?  I has a relative that live on a hill that no one liked to visit because it was so dangerous getting in and out of driveway.  It still looks dangerous to me.  Why didn't they make a circle drive?  At any rate, it looks great and thanks for sharing.

  6. Mildred Martinez says:

    This is a great design and functions well.  Great job.

  7. Hannah s.Holli says:

    The home is GORGEOUS. Definitely flows a lot better…and the unique plants…LOVE THEM. gorgeous. Absolutely gorgeous. Love this series.

  8. Craig Merkey says:

    great plan

  9. burney6211 says:

    That night lighting – Just wow!

  10. stacie cook says:

    Wow beautiful !!

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