Feb 12 2010

Berkeley Rose Walk

When we were roaming around Berkeley on one of the pedestrian connections I mentioned, we stumbled upon the famous Rose Walk. This space is simply fabulous. What is it you ask? It is an open space pedestrian courtyard surrounding by an eclectic collection of highly detailed homes. Automobile access is from the rear, with alley loaded garages. This space has a plaza, and is extensively landscaped, including roses. I have been designing and pushing neighborhood planning like this for years, and was very pleased to find this space, built around the 192o’s I guess from the style of architecture. There is no front yard demarcation, all the spaces blend into one larger space. Wouldn’t a place like this be fabulous to live in?

This open space is heavily landscaped.


This walk leads to adjacent streets.

This is a classic pedestrian plaza, complete with seat walls.

Check out the detail on this fabulous home. While the styles vary, this level of detail is typical.

Mar 5 2009

Spring is here..Way to early!

In our our area, and most of the front range of Colorado, this has been an incredibly warm, dry, and windy winter. It is so warm, we already have Tulips up several inches and crocus blooming. Today I noticed that the Nannyberry’s are leafing out, and the blossoms on the Lilacs are turning purple…all a good month early! I am not ready to start watering yet, nor am I ready to clean up the yard yet. Knowing our luck, everything will leaf out, then we will get a massive freeze and snowstorm and wipe it all out.

Guess it is time to get the lawn mower fixed.

Aug 16 2008

Rain and more Rain

Don’t know if this is global warming or not, but we have had a very dry spring and summer, with only about half of our normal moisture for the year. Until Thursday. It started with a bang Thursday afternoon with a major hail storm that flattened our garden and a good 1/2 inch of rain. Since then it has rained almost non-stop. So far, our own rain gauge has a total of 3 inches in it. That follows pretty closely to the nearest official rain gauge. Feast or Famine, at least I won’t be having to water the yard for some time!

Jun 26 2008

Water Conservation

One of the things that I vowed to due this year was to cut down on my outdoor water use. We have a xeriscaped yard, so I decided it was high time that it actually perform that way. Of course, one of our big water users was our corn garden. In years past we watered it with a rotary sprinkler hooked on the hose. Problem is, I would turn it on in the evening, then forget about it. In the morning I would find it still on watering away! Our annual water allotment for our lot size is 240,000 gallons. The last few years we have zoomed past that by early August…and of course have paid dearly.

This spring I reworked the irrigation system in the regular garden, and installed one in the corn garden, so no more overhead sprinklers. In the corn garden, I have hooked it up to the irrigation system, but havn’t actually put it on the clock. I have discovered that all I need to is to turn it on for about 15 minutes every few days, and with the soaker hoses, that is all I need to do. I use that time to week the garden and do pruning, so I don’t forget it. I have also put washers in all the hose bibs and hose connections, dramatically cutting back on the leaks. I have also cut back on the overall watering.

So far it is working. Yesterday we recieved our water bill. Last year we used 41,000 gallons in June, this year, only 14,000 gallons. I think, our running total for the year is about 100,000 gallons. I think we will have a good summer for water use!

Oh, we also made it all the way to June 25th before we turned on the A/C!

Jun 9 2008

New Spring Time Pictures

I have added more springtime pictures to my album that I listed in the previous post.