The owners of the Hartwell Residence, busy in careers improving the lives of others, wished to create an oasis of serenity and enjoyment. The focused areas consisted of the front entry garden and the outdated pool and surrounding terrace. As the design progressed the owners’ interest in sustainable solutions grew. The existing pool’s concrete terrace was crushed to create the site’s gabion wall. Flagstone set in gravel replaced the concrete pool surround creating a permeable service. Rain barrels and a composting system were implemented. The green roof of a utility shed symbolizes the clients’ ethos of sustainability.
A thickly wooded area on the brow of a hill provided the setting for a meditation studio amidst mature native trees. The architect of the studio and outdoor fireplace, Rick Schoeff designed the studio with reclaimed barn wood. The flagstone terrace extending to a site built bench surrounds the terrace and serves as a vantage point on the home, the pool and landscape beyond. Supporting the terrace is a wall of native field stone on gravel footings.
The Plantings were sourced from nurseries focusing on local genotype seed. These natives make up ninety percent of the plant palette. The varied texture of the plantings along with their loose and natural composition compliment the long lines of terraces and walls while providing counterpoint to the verticality of trunk and architecture. The client has become committed to managing their gardens with a cutting edge organic practice reviewed seasonally.