'Sleep, creep, leap': The rule of thumb for native gardens


Photos Tanya Kucak/Special to the Town Crier
Plant annuals such as clarkias or poppies for bursts of color in the spring.

 

A properly planted native garden often starts out looking sparse and fills in gradually. At first, most of the growth is below the surface. It may look like nothing is happening, but the extensive root system that makes many natives drought-tolerant takes time to get established. It may take two or three years before you see significant growth above ground.

How to maintain a freshly organized space


Courtesy of Amanda Kuzak
It’s not enough to just organize a space, it must be maintained so that it doesn’t serve as a repository for junk over time.

My blog readers have one consistent question after they see my before-and-after gallery: “Does anyone actually maintain his or her space?”

Enchanting decor: Enchanté Boutique Hotel showcases Francophile's flair for design


Photos Megan V. WInslow/Town Crier
Abigail Ahrens, who runs – and lives at – Enchanté Boutique Hotel, brought her love of French design to the property’s 19 guest rooms and her own top-floor living quarters.

Under a Mansard roof in downtown Los Altos, hotel guests relax in their French-infused rooms, read by the fireplace in the cozy library or, in the bistro, nibble pastries flown in from Paris. And proprietor Abigail Ahrens resides – literally – under the rooftop.

Now in her 48th year in the real estate business, Ahrens, owner of The Abigail Co., has long had a penchant for designing and development. She was also part of a partnership that owned an antique store in Los Gatos and a store for high-end interiors – Hilary Thatz at Stanford Shopping Center.

Yard remodel results in win-win-win landscape


Tanya Kucak/Special to the Town Crier
At the front of the yard, passersby can enjoy the fragrant flowers of ​Cedros Island verbena​.​ ​Each mounded shrub, covered in flowers from spring to fall, can reach 2-3 feet high and 3-6 feet wide.

 

After they retired and remodeled their Mountain View home, Joanne Kanow and Joe Petersack decided to renovate their landscape as well. Their front lawn was not growing well and was compacted; their backyard was mostly 3-foot-by-3-foot squares of aggregate concrete.

A balanced life: Big basement takes family living to new heights


Photos Megan V. WInslow/Town Crier
Los Altos residents Sangeeth and Sindhu Peruri designed their 2,000-square-foot basement to be a multiuse space – a gym by day and a family gathering spot by night.

By day, it’s a gym, a yoga and martial arts studio, a Ninja Warrior training ground and a playroom. By night, it’s a place to curl up as a family to watch Warriors games on the big-screen TV, play poker or host parties for friends.

Welcome to the Peruri family’s Los Altos basement.

Handling a fire: The morning after


PHOTOS COURTESY OF JOHN ALLENDER
The before, above, and after, inset, photos of a master bedroom reveal what a general contractor can repair in the wake of a home fire.

This is part 2 in the “Disaster Repair” series. Part 1 appeared in the Feb. 22 Town Crier.


Submit a Letter to the Editor

The Town Crier welcomes letters to the editor on current events pertinent to Los Altos, Los Altos Hills and Mountain View. Write to us at 138 Main St., Los Altos 94022, Attn: Editor, or email editor Bruce Barton at bruceb@latc.com. Because editorial space is limited, please confine letters to no more than 200 words. Include a phone number for verification purposes. Anonymous letters will not be printed.

You can also have your say right here at losaltosonline.com – scroll to the bottom of any story to add a comment. 

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