I was recently hired by a husband and wife in Mission Viejo to design their front and back yard. It consisted mostly of grass and what used to be a gazebo in the center of the back yard. The owners who have lived here for more than a decade wanted to remove the grass in both the front and the back and expand the back yard patio area. They also wanted to go with a California native planting scheme.
In this case the homeowners have a realistic budget, which made for a much easier design process. They were also open to suggestions and willing to just trust the designer and let her (aka me) work that magic design touch. That is one thing that I love about my clients. They hire a designer for a reason and are willing to let that designer work her magic.
In the front yard we redid the driveway and front walk as well as most of the plantings. We did keep a little bit of grass (per the homeowners request). In the back yard we kept some existing (already established) trees, the shed and redid the patio. We also used some existing funky edging that the client had to border the path to the shed.
What was once just concrete and grass is now flagstone and some California native plants. This combined with an energy efficient irrigation system makes for a cool project that will soon become the envy of the neighborhood.
Once the project is complete I will add the after photos. Stay tuned!