Click here to see a photo gallery of Shrader's own garden as well as some of his other designs.
This article appeared as "Empty Canvas" in the November/December 2011 issue.
It’s been cool in Los Angeles, but every few days Lari Pittman gets up early to turn on the sprinklers in Parque Oaxaca, the three-quarter-acre private garden he and his partner Roy Dowell have been building for nearly a dozen years. It’s mostly cacti and succulents, olive and pepper trees — drought-tolerant plants that can endure the heat without watering.
For inspiration from or indoctrination into the amazing world of succulents, look no further than the Desert Garden at the Huntington Botanical Gardens in San Marino, California. Its 10-plus acres are home to 4,000 different kinds of cacti and succulents, grown in a naturalistic landscape setting. (Succulents are plants that store moisture to survive drought; most cacti are succulents.) With parts of the garden nearly 100 years old, the collection has long been a plant proving ground for garden designers.
A weed-covered lot in Southern California, owned by Caltrans, is completely redone by a couple who live adjacent to the garden, complete with native varieties, a citrus grove, and hundreds of new plants, creating a Mediterranean idyll.
A slide show of a Beverly Hills garden makeover, designed by Judy Kameon.