In an unusual collaboration among birds, wind, and one of San Francisco’s leading landscape architects, a California designer has made a pair of unique outdoor living spaces—one low and one high.
Bernal Hill, one of San Francisco’s sunniest and least-developed spots, is a bare peak rising some 450 feet out of an otherwise densely packed neighborhood of charming turn-of-the-20th-century homes and shops. But whereas many manmade gardens are watered to be verdant year-round, Bernal Hill’s winter green and summer brown are a refreshing marker of the seasons. And that is exactly what designer Peter Liang desired atop his recently remodeled 2,000-square-foot home on the hill’s southern slope.
“I wanted to plant a green roof for its thermal mass, but I wanted it to be as natural as possible,” Liang says. “To achieve that, what better partner could I have found than nature itself?”
Now his 580-square-foot green roof is like a piece of the hill; its indigenous vegetation—seeded by birds and wind—is irrigated only by seasonal rain and dew.
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