Considering all the attention that backyard chicken coops and edible landscapes have gotten, homeowners have few public places to see these ideas in practice. The newly redesigned Garden for All Seasons, under construction this week and scheduled to open for this weekend's Grow! festival at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden in Arcadia, was conceived for just that purpose.
The Garden for All Seasons is a demonstration site for sustainable living practices. Visitors walk through a landscape dotted with fruit-producing trees from around the world, past a pond fed with rainwater collected on-site and through to a netted enclosure housing raised vegetable beds, a worm farm, compost bins and a chicken coop. (That's a Brazilian grape tree, top; Japanese plum tree, upper right; and flowering pomegranate tree, lower right.)
“We wanted homeowners to feel they could adapt it and make it their own,” said Amy Korn, who designed the space with her partner, Matt Randolph, of the landscape architecture firm kornrandolph in Pasadena. Even a pond fed with water from a cistern is meant to be inspiration, she said. “Maybe it’s not this grand thing, but the idea that collection and circulation is something they can do as well.”
An 8-foot-wide concrete walkway shuttles water to paver stones, sand, a gravel trench and a system of underground pipes that collect and recirculate the water using pumps that are meant to eventually run off solar power. The pond is planted with edibles that serve a secondary purpose: keeping the water clean.