This article originally appeared as "Breaking the Rules" in GARDEN DESIGN's April 2012 issue. 

When Jordan Kaplan sat down for his first meeting with Grant Kirkpatrick and Damon Hein of the architecture and landscape design firm KAA Design, he gave them one mandate for the gardens he wanted to build around his new home in Los Angeles’ Pacific Palisades. “To give you an idea where my focus is,” he said, “I want the landscape to have as much importance and value as the house.”

This article was first published in Garden Design April 2011

<i>Sansevieria cylindrica</i>

April 17, 2010
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Making its common name particularly apropos, this snake plant has long, narrow, cylindrical leaves arranged in dramatic Mohawk fans. A collector’s form of an old-fashioned plant and a must-have for chic interior-scapes. This grouping, planted in a row of tall, stylish concrete planters, creates a simple yet dramatic accent to a contemporary home, though they also fit well in less modern settings.,

Botanic Superlatives: The Largest Seed

January 28, 2009
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Imagine yourself on an island. The Indian Ocean curls around at your toes, washing up coral, shells, and...the sculpted form of a woman's nether region? To 16th century sailors, the headless curvaceous totem was a beautiful thing to behold: mysterious, inexplicable, and arousing. Perhaps it's not surprising that it took quite some time before anyone bothered to get to the bottom of it.