Price and Bernice Russ’ garden

Walnut Creek

Lot size: 4,000 sq. ft. front garden on tour, 50% native

Garden Age: Garden was installed in 2008

Years on the Bringing Back the Natives Garden Tour: New this year!

Showcase Feature
Three years ago Bernice and Price stopped watering their large front lawn; they wanted a water-conserving, low-maintenance garden that contained flowers, color, and texture, and had a woodsy feel. This spacious garden, which was designed and installed by Four Dimensions Landscape Company, intersperses natives with drought-tolerant Mediterranean plants. Bernice is delighted that there is always something blooming.

img_5561 Other Garden Attractions
• Plants were chosen for their tolerance of local clay soil.
• Prostrate manzanita functions as a ground-cover, providing flowers in spring, berries in fall, and greenery throughout the year.
• Buckeyes, toyon, and redbuds will soften the fence line, and valley oaks will shade the house and conserve energy, when mature.
• Mulch smotherss weeds, and conserves water.
•Valley oaks will shade the house and conserve energy when mature.

img_5548 Gardening for Wildlife
Leafcutter bees take moon-shaped bites out of the redbud leaves; bumblee-bees and honeybees also frequent the garden. Quail dart about the garden. In summer and early fall the native fuchsia attracts hummingbirds.

Garden Talk Meet the designer, Michael Thilgen of Four Dimensions Landscape, from 2:30-5:00.

Talk at 3:00 “The New Garden: Transforming a 50’s style front yard Into an exciting water-conserving landscape” by Michael Thilgen. There are many alternatives to the traditional juniper and front lawn plantings. Michael will discuss how to select native plants for ecological health and curbside appeal.

Price and Bernice Russ’ Plant List

More photos: