SEI Goes Bulldog!

When I was in middle school, I had a Seattle Times newspaper route. On Saturday mornings, a few customers would get the first edition of the Sunday paper – called the “Bulldog”.

You can imagine my surprise this morning when I went to QFC on Saturday morning to get some groceries and I saw an SEI garden on the front page of The Seattle Times’ Sunday Bulldog edition. This garden is also on the cover of and featured in this week’s Pacific NW Magazine as part of the Outdoor Living issue. Read more here.


Hanging Around

Here’s a great BBQ when space is limited.  It is the SIGMAFOCUS made by Focus Creation in France. Their core business is making an wide range of modern indoor fireplaces.  Two of my favorite are the RENZOFOCUS and the ECLATE GEANT. The Sigmafocus costs 1114 € and you can order directly from Focus.


My Weekend Trip to Southern California

After this week’s snow on Monday, followed by torrential rain on Wednesday and high winds on Friday, I wish I had spent the weekend in Southern California.  Instead, I could only dream of being in Southern California when I passed by these Eucalyptus trees Saturday afternoon while out on a walk with my daughter and son.  I’ve seen other Eucalyptus trees in Seattle occasionally, but none this big.


Boxwoods, Cat Mocha Art and Anarchists!

Last November, I went Portland to give a talk the weekend after the Presidential election. My top three highlights were:
  • Visiting Boxwood Gardens, a nursery in the Willamette Valley that specialize in what else — boxwoods! As I walked around, I imagined I was in England.
  • Avoiding the anarchists who were smashing cars a few blocks from the hotel where I was staying.
  • An amazing mocha complete with cat foam art.


Latte-cat face

Basalt Column Feature in Entry Courtyard

We completed this entry courtyard last fall.  I love its simple, graphic design. It will look fantastic every day of the year, offers a different experience when you enter and leave the courtyard, and is easy to maintain.

The main feature is the basalt column and its polished, mirror-like top.  Conceptually, I envisioned this as a tree that had fallen over in the forest and requires you to walk around it.  It’s placement was carefully considered to greet visitors and to direct them to the front door and away from the side door.  Notice the slight angle to the visible end of the stone?  It subtly points and directs you towards the front door which is to the right and out of view.

Check back soon and see what it took to install this 8′ long, 6000 pound rock.


Rugged Eastern Washington Landscape

I have mentioned before that I am always intrigued when things aren’t as they appear. It took this picture in Eastern Washington last summer.  Check back soon and learn why this caught my attention.

Fall Colors: It’s Not Just the Trees

The rain has finally let-up for a couple days – giving the sun a chance to shine on one of our recently completed projects. Gordon, a long-time SEI employee was treated to this wonderful sight the other morning and sent me this picture.  He was struck by how beautifully the steel walls echo the changing color of the leaves in the background.


Gray Magazine On-line Features SEI Project

Halloween is just a few days away, but don’t fooled by the pumpkins on the front porch!  The first picture below was taken a few years ago before we were hired to design a new front entry landscape for this Kirkland home and its exterior remodel.  Read more in is this Gray Magazine On-line article.






Hidden Hot Tubs

We currently have a couple clients with small back yards who want to install hot tubs, but don’t want to sacrifice all the usable space that the tubs occupy when they are not being used. Check-out these solutions for concealing hot tubs and maximizing the space around — and over — them.

Star Fish Cedar Tree

If you have driven through the Washington Park Arboretum lately, you may have noticed construction has started for the “loop” trail. As part of this, a number of trees have to be removed to make room for the trail.  As I was driving through the arboretum this weekend, this Western Red Cedar stump and a couple of ’rounds’ from the tree caught my attention.  The stump (at the back of the picture) and the ’rounds’ look more like shapes you would find in Puget Sound tide pools.  Needless to say, I couldn’t resist stopping to take a closer look — and a few pictures.