Part 1 – Wong Residence, Texas, Landscape Design

Part 1 – Wong Residence, Texas, Landscape Design (PDF)
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Part 1 – Wong Residence, Texas, Landscape Design (Demo)

  • BradW


    Patio raised to be level with interior floor. Pool and fireplace create interest. Tall hedge and specimen tree create shade. No grass – just plants, stone, fire and water…

  • Paul C

    I am doubtful of being able to submit on this exercise but will certainly be following along. Quick question though, how is the parking dealt with? Beyond the wall or on the street?

  • John Brown

    I like the simplicity of the plan. If the client insisted on grass for the daughters what would you suggest?

  • John Brown

    Good question.

    The house has no back lane. The garden walls are on the property line and shared with neighbors at the back and on the side. Parking in this neighborhood is all on the street.

  • BradW


    John – here is an option with grass…features an outdoor seating pavilion/room, a patio off the kitchen for dining and a small playhouse hiding in the corner.

  • JimG

    Not knowing what grows well in that part of the world, I’m just doing a guess here. Divide the back yard in half. Put a garden shed in the west corner (if there is going to be grass they need someplace to put the lawnmower) Bicycle storage in the walkway on the northwest side. off of the house on the southeast side, have a deck at floor level of the house cover 2/3s of that half of the back yard. I would put a pergola type roof from the house over about half of the deck, and train some vines to grow over it. In the south corner I would have a shade/fruit tree of some sort. And a long the back wall I would have about 3 feet of space for flowers or tomato’s or something, with some sort of fruit trees espaliered along the wall. I like edible landscaping. If your going to go through the work of growing something, why not beable to eat some of it? (I also need to figure out how to draw those neat plans like some of you do)

  • BradW


    Same as previous but with a pool, hot tub and bridge instead of grass.

  • Louis Pereira


    Since the Wong’s favour modern interiors, I felt a similar language should continue into the garden. I sought to create a crisp and formal outdoor space that compliments last week’s interior décor and layout proposal.

    I see that JimG made a similar suggestion of dividing the space, which I did in this scheme; creating a Deck for Outdooor Dining / Lounging and one that is level with the main floor for ease of accessibility.

    The lower half consists of a Grass Court for use as recreational space or passive lounging and a contemplative Water Sculpture Garden. Each ‘room’ is delineated by planting beds and an allee of decidous trees to help mitigate the sun’s midday and late afternoon heat. The tree canopies also create a ‘ceiling’ for the outdoor rooms.

    I chose the east gate as a primary access point into the garden for guests. A pergola which runs along the east side entry, creates an intimate procession to the garden and helps to emphasize the sculpture at the end of the walk as a point of interest.

    There is a strong connectedness between the house and garden with uninterupted views from the main living spaces to each of the outdoor areas. Night lighting would further engage and encourage outdoor activities well into the evening.

  • John Brown

    I like the grass option the best. I like the reasonability of it. The seating area in the corner is a nice touch.

  • John Brown

    Very nice plan. The strategy of bisecting the garden is a good one because it tightens up the deck area. The water sculpture garden is a nice touch.

  • Louis Pereira

    ^Thanks John – I also like Brad’s concept of a Covered Seating Pavilion…It’s a great way to add structure and to anchor that corner.

  • Louis Pereira


    Some precedents…

  • BradW

    Louis – What is the idea behind the wall screen as shown in the first precedent?

  • BradW

    Also Louis – I really like the symmetry and serenity of your design.

    John – as always, thanks for your comments and suggestions

  • Frances Grant-Feriancek


    My first attempt at an outdoor space, I am not entirely happy with it so far.
    I beleive trees and plantings on the south and west walls will help to control the heat.
    The kids area with a playhouse is in the south west corner, the east side of the yard has a dining and lounge seperated by a fireplace. I was also thinking about the sight lines upon entering from either gate…trees are nice but I think it could be more interesting.

  • John Brown

    Thank you for posting the project and congratulations on designing your first outside space. They are trickier to design than one might think aren’t they.

    Your use of trees on the south and west sides should work well for controlling heat. The seating area and dining space are also well organized within themselves. I think your dissatisfaction might stem from the way this seating and dining area “floats” on the grassed area and the dissociation of the deck from the rest of the design. The grass, deck, and seating seem like three pieces of a puzzle that haven’t quite been locked into place yet. Do you agree?

  • John Brown

    Thanks, as always, for the precedents. The interesting thing to note about the water sculpture gardens you have posted is that the actual water part is quite small and contained, and probably quite reasonably priced to do. Placing the small stone and water element in the center of a much larger square of landscape gravel gives it a much more significant presence in the garden.

  • Louis Pereira

    BradW – Andrea Cochran’s project with the screen in the first precedent acts as a backdrop to the cube sculpture in the foreground, but also appears to function as a sliding shoji door entrance to what may be an outdoor studio or even small shed.

    For the Wong proposal, i thought a similar idea could provide a backdrop to the water sculpture, to articulate the brick wall and to terminate the view centerline from the Living Room.


    John – i agree with your comment about the water sculpture and its role, even though it is as you say, quite small and contained. Because of its size, I also like to think of it as a much more manageable feature element than say a large pool or the cliched free-form ‘cascading water pond’.

    Also, I’m pleased you noticed the surface material proposed around the sculpture. The gravel or fine shale mulch was a textural counterpoint to the precise nature of the water cube – thereby heightening the qualities of both.

  • Louis Pereira

    Frances – The Outdoor Dining and Furniture are well placed and work well together. The implied separation and distance of the Outdoor Dining area in proximity to the Kitchen is almost identical with the interior layout – something i think the client would appreciate in this case.

    The framework is almost there. It would simply be a matter of delineating the grassy open space and planting beds with the other site amenities to create a unified garden.

    Thanks for posting!…