On the heels of Earth Day last week and mounting concern over the California drought, the real estate market is evolving to account for the shift by creating ‘drought-friendly’ homes inclusive of innovative irrigation systems, drought-tolerant plants, permeable pea-gravel, permeable paving (which helps rainfall delve into the soil underneath), and synthetic grass instead of grass as a mechanism for conserving water and helping the planet. While the effects of conservation crusades and the state legislature’s across-the-board cut in water usage take precedence over many industries, one of the most that is guaranteed to be dramatically altered by the new normal is the field of landscape architecture. Hilton & Hyland’s KJ Marmon currently represents a home on Hermes Drive built with astro turf, which gracefully lines the Hollywood Hills, overlooking the Sunset Strip area beneath it. The property is a prime example of the usage of an eco-friendly spa and pool, alongside astroturf lining the property to create the quintessential modern home on the market.
Hilton & Hyland’s Frank Jackwerth recently listed Villa Maggio, the home in Palm Desert once-owned by Frank Sinatra and used to entertain the venerable Rat Pack. The home’s two-story guest house has its own water well, generator, and water tower, providing a self-sufficient standalone piece to an exceptional, timeless home. Additionally, the overall landscape architecture of the home features gravel lining the drive, in addition to succulents. Sometimes called “fat plants,” succulents are plants that have some parts with more-than-average thickness and are fleshy in nature, usually to retain water in arid climates or soil conditions. This is a strong facet of the drought-friendly home.
As The Wall Street Journal noted aptly last week, “modernist architecture has a vastly underappreciated weapon in the service of making it more appealing to the public: the modern landscape. Like Ginger Rogers to Fred Astaire, the modern landscape uses many of the same moves—a penchant for flat planes and highly orchestrated arrays, for instance—but is often far easier on the eye and a lot more seductive.” The beauty of the modern world of landscape architecture makes it a seamless complement to a new home, rather than an obstructionist facet as it once was. To learn more about water conservation, visit The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California.