Saturday, March 6, 2010

Dreams of My Own 'Mar Vista Green Garden'

Conceptual Design for Private Patio GardenImage by MaureenShaughnessy (aka MontanaRaven) via Flickr

When I bought my home 16 years ago, I had no idea I was coming to live in a community that would become synonymous with 'going green.' Apparently many of my neighbors in my community of Mar Vista in the City of Los Angeles decided to conduct their own 'green' experiments. It's spured a whole Mar Vista green movement, which has really taken off in the form of solar panels, rainwater harvesting, low water gardens and lawn replacement. There is even a Mar Vista Green Committee that is part of the Mar Vista Community Council.

Last year marked the first annual Mar Vista Green Garden showcase with tours of about 55 local homes and community garden sites. I participated in the tour last year thanks to my hubby and friend Cyndie. I saw artificial turf, landscaping using native plants, a no-water front yard sustained by just rainwater and the learning garden on the campus of Venice High School. I took lots of pictures, business cards and quick notes about what I liked and wanted to include in my own front and backyards.

All that viewing got me dreaming about my own garden renovations. How I so want to ditch the plain concrete driveway with the strip of grass down the middle in favor of driveway pavers surrounding a strip of no-water artificial turf. Yes, I am dreaming of new driveway designs, and patio designs too. I would love to transform my front yard into a beautiful low water native perennial flower container garden with a winding paver walkway, artificial turf plots for my dogs and a fountain, all surround by low fencing.

Yes, I dream of my own front yard transformed into lovely fenced-in, private dog park.

The next Mar Vista Green Garden Showcase tour is set for April 25th and I can't wait. Since I only visited a handful of gardens last year, I am looking forward to visiting a new set of 5 to 10 sites that I didn't see last year. As for making my garden dreams a reality, I'm not sure how long that will take. But with a very modest-sized urban parcel of land to contend with, I am consoled that a green makeover won't cost me an arm and leg. Which, come to think of it, is probably how a lot of my neighbors can afford the costs associated with going green.

What are your green dreams? Share them when you leave a comment.

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