We have accomplished so much here!
We have a patio off the sleeping porch now! Not too long ago, the porch was four or five broken windows and a door, but we replaced them with two doors and new insulation and siding. The porch repair involved demolishing all the previous concrete patios and walkways, because the previous pad allowed rain to enter. The new yard is graded with a lower patio fitted with a track for drainage.
I don't know if you can tell, but the pergola's slats follow the shape of the patio, but otherwise, it really looks as if it was always on this 71 years-old home! It is also oriented perfectly toward the garden the giant old cactus when one walks out of the carport hallway. We didn't want it to look out of place. Where the opening is to the hallway, there will be a white wooden gate that leads to the potting shed and my spouse's office.
It is hard to believe it is the same home! I still can't believe how many dump truck loads of junk we had hauled away: patio concrete, bricks, cement blocks, pavers, an aluminum fence, one torn down block wall, and tons of leftover debris from previous owners. I really think it just accumulated over time. I couldn't find anyone to take it, or pay someone to take it, until somewhat suggested demolition. And the demolition man saved the day. He was really charming. He looked at the embarrassing mess, and said, "it can be gone tomorrow." Can you guess what he usually demolishes? He removes swimming pools!
There is now a path of crushed decomposed granite (1/4 minus palomino) from the new patio to the four beds that my spouse built last year using this plan, and the trellis that we made and recently finished. They look less deep, because the landscaper partially buried them. I think it will keep the beds a bit cooler and retain water a bit better for around here. We grow vegetables, herbs, and some flowers that are safe to plant with food such as roses and lavender; we don't use pesticides. The landscaper installed sprayers in the beds, and it has already reduced watering, because in the desert this is the best way to use water efficiently and effectively. We can adjust the days, the time, the amount .... Over time, we plan to add some pots with irrigation lines. The "copper"arches hold shade cloth in the summer.
A reader ask how to you care for the rock? Just brush it with a wide broom. Around the paths there is madison gold granite. I think it is the next size up in granite.
My spouse installed sliding screens on the French doors, and we really like them, because it keeps out bugs. The screens are a product of Canada that can be found at Home Depot, however this size was a special order. (My blog is a hobby with no ads, so I was not paid to say that. ) The six citrus trees that my spouse planted last year will eventually partially screen the patio/pergola from the garden. They also follow the patio curve over to a shed that will someday be a craft/art room. For now, my spouse is putting the finishing touches of white paint on the outside of things. Did you see the tall palm tree? There are three of those in the yard, and we have no idea how old they are. Most of the time in photos all you see are their trunks. Here is part I.