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Located near downtown Memphis, this property had a lot of potential but needed a bit of clean-up and some modern design elements to make it the elegant space we knew it could be. For this project, we decided to use some of the existing hardscape to assist in our design concept and make the addition feel more natural. Initially, the client’s direct line of sight out the back door was the large, blank exterior of a neighbor’s house, which felt intrusive and visually uninspiring. To gracefully delineate the outdoor space between the properties and create privacy -- plus, a more pleasing view -- we decided to build a custom 14’ cedar wall.

Using an existing planter structure for the base, we poured concrete footings to hold the support beams in place and erected the wall in a spatially organic way. Two rippling copper fountains, each nearly 8’ tall, adorn the wall’s surface and create serene sounds with their gently trickling streams. To hide the water basin and blend them into the environment, we secured the fountains using another existing planter that borders the garden’s upper patio, then commissioned a local artist to forge wrought iron leaf trellises, a fitting frame for such an ethereal scene.

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We planted Dwarf Mondo Grass to visually divide the specially cut bluestone steppers and single-trunk hollies to work in tandem with the cedar wall, lending a delicate balance to the artistic landscape screen. The final polish on this small, fanciful gathering space is the trio of tiered box planters, each brimming with plants and flowers that soften the area and infuse a dose of color.

Now, sitting on the terrace, the client can enjoy a lovely garden scene, dotted with rich artistic details. The overall effect is a seamless, multi-textured melange of hardscapes and botanicals that sounds as pleasing as it looks.

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