Kat and Tim King of Land2c Landscape Architecture tame a slippery slope with flowing, private spaces and beautiful tableaux.
A BUSY, URBAN family of four that loves the outdoors and camping but not necessarily gardening already had remodeled its 1920s vintage Queen Anne home three times before undertaking a garden renovation. But creating that garden oasis on a property as vertical as they come was quite a project.
The back garden, with its fabulous views out to the city and Puget Sound, falls sharply away from the back of the old, three-story house. How to create a seamless transition between indoors and out, let alone a garden inviting enough to lure family and friends to descend all those steps?
Designers Kat and Tim King of Land2c Landscape Architecture were up to the vision and the job. But not without a major excavation, safety considerations like replacement and widening of steps, a new irrigation system, night lighting and lots of carefully considered plantings. “We needed to create a new topography by berming the slope … originally it was flat and then a big drop-off,” explains Tim.
Tim is a landscape architect who specializes in crafting a smooth flow between house and garden. Kat focuses on color, plantings and decorative garden elements. She chose and placed every plant in the garden, except for the stately old sequoia that sold the family on the property in the first place. Lit up at night, the rough-barked old giant holds pride of place among a bevy of new plantings burgeoning up around it.
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But first, masses of blackberries needed to be removed at the bottom of the garden to carve out level space for a stone patio, a fire pit, benches and Adirondack chairs. This is now the family’s favorite spot to hang out. Leslie, the mom, speaks for the whole family when she says, “We love camping, and when we’re down in the garden around the fire pit, it almost feels like we’re out camping.”
The garden was designed to be looked down upon from the deck high above, with three arbors, art and a dramatically curving stone pathway. It works equally well as a space to stroll, hang out and enjoy the feeling of being submerged in the plantings. It’s a place apart, quiet, private and enlivened by the…