We created a series of garden rooms surrounding a home styled after a Renaissance Iberian Peninsula villa in San Miguel de Allende. Large sculpted boxwood shrubs form the backbone of every 'room', accentuated in places by 24ft tall Washingtonia palms, mature olives, a triple hedge of podocarpus, boxwood, & agapanthus, a cutting garden, and a citrus parterre. There are agaves spread throughout to remind one she is still in Mexico.
Chic Urban Forest. NYC.
Roof terrace garden for a family that spends most of its time in the city in the fall and the spring. Accordingly, the garden has most interest in fall and spring and connotes a northern deciduous forest--with River Birch (selected for heat tolerance) underplanted with bearberry, Hinoki False Cypress for evergreen interest, and espaliered apple trees-giving the effect of a civilized orchard.
Obsidian Zen Garden. SMA, Mx.
A Zen garden composed of Obsidian boulders weighing up to 600 lbs eacch, sedum to work as ‘moss’, black pumice, and Agave victoria-reginae in the middle of a colonial courtyard that had tricky light conditions.
Hinoki Copse. NYC.
Three twelve feet tall Hinoki False Cypress set in an Upper East Side backyard. Trees were brought into Manhattan on a tow truck used for hauling tractor trailers.
Hotel Matilda. SMA, Mx.
Hotel Matilda was the first luxury hotel in San Miguel de Allende. To tie a modern hotel with a colonial pueblo, we leaned heavily on the vernacular plant palette - we used Washingtonia Palms as the main structural plant - these trees are also in front of the town's famous 'Parroquia'. Further nods to the local environs include Bougainvillea and Distictis vines hanging from roof planters. At ground level, the plantings get interesting, with a palette that is nearly all native, including several agave species and the rare (in Mexico) Mexican Weeping Bamboo.
Oak Forest Ranch. GTO, Mx.
Ranch in the oak forest biome of Guanjuato, approximately 7,00 ft above sea level. Landscape architecture reflects rock walls of local farms and architecture of main buildings and main structural plant-agave, mimics the maguey hedgerows of local farmsteads. We imported French lavender to create a working ranch.
Art House. Taghkanic, NY.
Weekend home for art collectors designed by Ai Weiwei and HHF Architects. Our goal was to create a farm landscape that looked like it had always been there, redolent of Hudson Valley orchards and grazing land. To do this, we imported an ancient apple orchard from a few miles away, added tons of soil to create rolling hills near the house (where the land had previously fell away), cut meadows, and planted a spectacular forest periphery of birch, low sumac, and seasonal wildflowers.
Mexican Italianate. SMA, Mx.
Italianate Mexican design in the Centro section of San Miguel de Allende. We took an existing formal cypress allee and added a copse of olive trees, underplanted with lavender. The garden is 'Mexicanized' through the use of Mexican Fencepost cactus and blue palms.
Weekend Home. Ancram, NY.
Weekend home landscaped to accentuate the look and feel of a 18th century farmhouse and 19th century barn. Borders are massive and shrub based, becoming a hedgerow with all-season interest punctuated by swaths of perennials.
Native Garden, Mx.
Garden using all native plants and minimal irrigation. Around a spiral backbone of Organos cactus and agave, we planted native perennials that we grew from seeds collected in the surrounding hills-dahlia, marigolds, salvia, and palo blancoo trees.