Pet-Friendly Back Yard, Lighting, and Native Beds

Priorities: – Prolific Front Yard Beds – Dog Run in Back Yard – Shaded Outdoor Seating
Challenges: – Tricky Sunlight Conditions – Damaged Landscape
Solutions: – Light-Matched Planting – Custom Steel Edging – Resilient Surfaces

Two critical concerns for our client guided this residential project. The first was a marginal frontyard garden bed that refused to flourish — either the side in deep shade or the one in constant sunlight.

The second (and more important) was a high-energy family dog named Fargo. Or, more accurately, what Fargo had done to the back yard.

Over the years, the shepherd mix ran a deep trench into his favorite stretch of the property and had reduced a lot of his humans’ landscaping efforts to dust. The challenge was to create a stable solution that could still accommodate the vigorous pet.

In front, a new bed with robust, custom-welded 3/16” steel edging would need to trace the profile of the house and hold plants better suited to their sun exposure.

A final objective: Create a backyard seating space in the shade of a big pecan tree.

Maas Verde pulled up the existing front yard edging, drew a new pattern, and sank the new material.

front yard garden beds

For Fargo’s run, we chose a bocce court filled a heavy layer of 5/8″ granite gravel. A standup limestone patio and commercial-grade low-voltage lighting framed the back yard seating area.

a stone patio

We placed native plants stragetically in the front yard beds. Turks cap (M. arboreus), sea oats (C. latifolium), and beauty berry (C. americana) went into the shady side and flame acanthus (A. quadrifidus), multiple salvia variants, and Gregg’s mistflower (C. greggii), in the sun.

As a finishing touch, Maas Verde revitalized a rear trellis where a maladapted star jasmine had died in the 2021 winter storm. Star jasmine is a non-native species that doesn’t tolerate cold weather especially well, and can be water-consumptive.

a gravel dog run

Instead, Maas Verde installed coral honeysuckle — a native climber that attracts pollinators with its beautiful red fluted flowers.

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