This modest little house has been occupied by a Japanese couple since before I was born, I think. That’s since before
1977 1979. And they were old then. So they’ve prolly seen a lot.
When I was a little girl, this yard was all clover greens. You know, this stuff. Every day they were out there, carefully trimming, weeding and manicuring it. I guess it needed a lot of care. It looked absolutely beautiful, and verdant, and very Zen, with this smooth, otherworldly, Candyland-vibrant quality and it made a soft, velvety carpet through the yard.
As the years went by, I went away to college, and one day when I drove back through the old neighborhood, the clover lawn was gone, replaced by this xeriscape with carefully arranged islands of growth. It’s still carefully tended, but the velvet green is gone. :(
The little old couple is still there, though.
Which is cool.
Their house is the only one on the block–all of houses of identical vintage, I believe–whose yard is intentionally dry. Most have lawns of varying verdancy, while a few just have unconsidered dirt, car parts and a profusion of childrens’ toys.
I love how carefully pruned the plants are, and how that care is mirrored in the house’s humble simplicity. It’s like a work of minimalist art, contemplative, calming. My favorite elements are the little curvilinear brackets on the patio overhang: they’re one of the few contrasts with the straight, flat lines & right angles of the house & lawn, and as such they produce a really pleasing effect. Also the moss-green trim around the white inner trim on both the doors and the windows–a cool repetition that produces a static and soothing effect, as do most regular patterns.
Ah, my much-loved and sorely neglected Art History degree, how embarassingly inadequate is the utility to which you are matched. How my student loans languish while I analyze the aesthetic motifs of contemporary postmodern suburbia.
Blogged to the sound of The Books.