Tag Archives: BROOKS KOLB

“Growing Gracefully” – A Brooks Kolb North Capitol Hill Garden Featured in “Pacific NW” Magazine

The Entry Gates – all photos by Seattle Times Photographer, Mike Siegel

Seattle Landscape Architect Brooks Kolb was once again featured in the Seattle Times’ “Pacific NW” Magazine on September 7, 2014, in an article by the noted Times garden writer, Valerie Easton. Titled “Growing Gracefully, A Redesign mixes the best of old and new,” the column lead with the following paragraphs:

“It’s not often a landscape architect gets another shot at a garden he designed years ago. But when horticulturist Sue Nicol was hired to come up with a fresh plant palette for an aging Capitol Hill garden, she asked Brooks Kolb to collaborate with her on the project. And it turns out that Kolb, along with his partner, Bill Talley, had renovated the garden in 1997 for an earlier owner.” ….New owners Don and Marty Sands “remodeled the (1932 brick Tudor) inside and out, then turned their attention to updating the garden. The couple appreciated the dramatic entry gates, as well as the matuing Japanese maples, Korean dogwoods and Hinoki cypress from the earlier renovation. Marty loves how the garden wraps around the house ‘like a little haven.’ And she calls the majestic copper beech that dominates the scene ‘a Grandfather tree.’”

Since the house is located on the corner of a curving street near Interlaken Boulevard, Brooks loved the original opportunity to remove a scruffy lawn, replacing it with a path that curves parallel to the road, connecting several distinct garden rooms along the way.

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All photos by Seattle Times Photographer, Mike Siegel:  The House and Rockery from the Street; the Entry Gates

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The Birdbath with Japanese Forest Grass; Owners Marty and Don Sands

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The Fountain in 1997; The Fountain Today, with its Lily Bud Jet

Inteviewing Brooks, Valerie asked, “What was it like for Kolb to re-imagine a garden he designed long ago? ‘It’s a wonderful chance to come back in and retool a garden,’ he says. He planted a necklace of new daphnes around the old fountain and left alone the huge white wisteria growing on the hefty arbor at the side of the house.”

Brooks also relished the opportunity to work collaboratively with Sue Nicol, whose contributions to the jointly designed planting plan included the “intensely fragrant” Daphne bholua and ‘Korean Apricot’ chrysanthemums, among many other selections. Brooks has collaborated with Sue for her horticultural and arborist expertise on a number of Seattle area garden designs.

Brooks Kolb’s Hood Canal Garden featured in the Seattle Times “Pacific NW” Magazine

Seattle Landscape Architect Brooks Kolb’s landscape renovation for a site in tiny Holly, on Hood Canal, was featured in the October 19, 2014 Fall Home Design issue of the Seattle Times’ “Pacific NW” Magazine. Owner Paige Stockley’s enthusiasm for Holly and for the amazing waterfront property she found and purchased there proved exactly the catalyst Brooks needed to do some of his best work. The highly diverse site is heavily wooded alongside its entrance at the road, from which it descends to a wetland, a lawn, a beach front, and a working salmon stream.

Brooks brought in the environmental team of Tom and Kathy Smayda, a hydraulic engineer and wetland biologist respectively, to restore the salmon stream and rescue the beach from erosion. After Paige obtained a Kitsap County permit to unclog a large culvert under the highway, chum salmon returned in droves for the first time in years. Tom artfully reshaped the banks of the creek, enabling nature to take over and finish the job on its own time. Kathy helped Brooks generate native planting palettes for the wetland, creek banks and beach areas.

Andrew Borges, architect, designed a Cape Cod-influenced beach house and small adjoining guest house for Paige, raised on stilts above the floodplain, so Brooks also had an ornamental landscape to design. The resulting plan features a large lawn for beach-front entertaining, bordered with shrubs and perennials, including one of Paige’s favorite ornamentals, the Limelight Hydrangea. A small garden surrounding a swale bordered by rocks and Rhododendrons links the main house to the guest house, knitting both together with a gravel parking court.

Interior Designer:  Michelle Burgess; Landscape Contractor: Madrona Point Landscaping.  All photographs by Benjamin Benschneider

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This project was previously published in the October 2013 issue of “Coastal Living” Magazine – see the earlier related blog entry