Gardens

“I don’t divide architecture, landscape and gardening; to me they are one.”
Luis Barragan

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Gardens are simply an extension of architecture… or architecture is simply an object in a garden.  Either way, they are part of one another.  The most important first step in Sedona is to preserve landscape, and thus the “garden” exists instantly, with the building nestled within the native’s embrace like it has always been there,  and simply needs to be added to.  There is priceless value in this:  the native trees here are extremely slow growing and take 100 to 200 years to develop maturity and irreplaceable character.  We sometime go to extremes to save them because of this, not simply because we love trees.  One needs to be conscious of wildfire safety, but one should never take a unique high desert tree for granted.

The design of gardens are like those of the architecture:  they vary according to the client and the site to create their own unique expression, appropriate to their location and to the emotional expression of the overall concept.  Thus for a building adjacent to an existing rose garden, the roses became the focal point of the outdoor space and were added to and enriched.  For a meditation center, an Oriental feeling was sought… while not being particularly Asian in any way but rather peaceful.  And flower gardens vary according to the infinite variety of clients tastes and to what works best in this climate.

The final key to landscaping?  Having a master gardener, of course, who knows the plants and what works with the different local micro-climates, and who has the love for tending gardens that makes a garden succeed.

Charles Van Block   Architects, Inc.  -  2675 W Hwy 89a #1239  -  Sedona AZ 86336  - Tel: 928-607-6446 -  Email

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