When we moved into our Los Feliz home back in 1995, the backyard was in dire need of some attention. It was basically just a sloping hill with no personality and nothing on it. We had a lot of work to do! Follow us on a short tour of our now blossoming garden filled with interesting antiques and finds.
Prior to Pom Pom at Home being a wholesale textile company with an online store, we had several stores around Los Angeles carrying antiques we had shipped in from around the world. We would travel everywhere looking for beautiful pieces to stock in our stores. We fell in love with many of these pieces ourselves and found spots for them in our garden.
Succulents come in so many shapes and sizes and are so easy to grow in Southern California with the never ending sunshine. I haven't actually bought succulents in years! I simply propagate them over and over from clippings of my existing plants or plants I come across in friends’ gardens or just out and about. You only need but a tiny bud of the plant to regrow an enormous bush!
The succulent on the left is part of a pair placed beside our deck chairs in matching metal urns from the 1940s. These urns are from America and feature beautiful inlayed floral details.
The succulents on the right are potted in a cement urn from Hungary circa 1980s.
A beautiful garden doesn’t happen overnight. You must have patience and time to cultivate something that is layered and evolved. For a garden to truly mature, it takes 10 - 12 years. This Asparagus plant above has been growing in our garden for 15 years! In an ornamental garden, everything has a shape, the hedges, the trees, it’s all very intentional although it may look completely serendipitous.
This lovely drift wood sculpture is actually from HD Buttercup here in Los Angeles. I wanted it to look aged so I ended up staining it myself and I'm allowing it to weather outside naturally as well.
I love this little corner of the yard. It’s moody and feels older and full of time gone by. It’s a kind of secret garden that you can only find if you really explore the yard fully. The wood is from salvaged railroad ties and the stone work I did by hand about 20 years ago. This ornamental cement piece is actually a street fixture from the 1930s. I can no longer be certain what exactly it was used for but it’s a beautiful piece.
This square bird bath was one of the few things already in the backyard when we moved in. It was extremely overgrown and hadn’t been used in years. I actually tried to remove it and dug it up for many hours before I realized it wasn’t going to budge! So we ended up keeping it and making it a focal point. I added the top piece which I found at the Pasadena Rose Bowl flea market and connected the water components to create the fountain you see here today.
This bench is from the late 19th century France. I found it in an antique store in Lake Arrowhead, CA. It was originally green and you can see bits and pieces of the 100 year old paint to this day.
These red dragon flies have been coming back to our pool for the last 20 years! They are male dragon flies called flame skimmer or firecracker skimmer. Each Summer between May and September, their beautiful red wings return to feed in our garden.
This flowering plant is called a Sun Parasol and it blooms year around here in California. I’ve done another pair of cast iron urns here at the front of the pool from the 1920s.
This is an old public fountain from Belgium circa 1920s. I’ve adhered to the wall of ivy on our fence and planted succulents in it. It has a great overgrown look to it as if it’s always been there and the wild plants are reclaiming it.
The column on the right we found in Mobile, Alabama. It’s from the 1920s and we planted ivy atop it.
The planter on the left is actually a bird bath from the 1920s. It still has its original paint on it.
I found this lovely wrought iron pedestal planter on a trip to Savannah, GA about 20 years ago. It’s most likely from the 1950s and it’s rusted so beautifully. The orange color is a nice contrast to all the green.
This large leafed plant is called a Japanese Aralia. Its leaves look very tropical and is a great plant to mix and fill areas up, it’s also very low maintenance and easy to keep.
Just about anything can be a planter. As long as it can withstand the weather and the water! When it comes to antiques, the older it gets and the more aged it looks, the more interesting it becomes. The old rusted cast iron of this 1930s French urn is a great juxtaposition to the vibrant fresh succulents.
The garden has such a large variety of plant species. Here is just a snippet...
White African Iris - Lavender with Babys Breath - Zebra Succulent - Hibiscus - Lemon Tree
This fountain on the left is the oldest piece in our garden. It’s from Savannah circa 1800.
The double wooden doors on the right are from Egypt. I had an entire cargo container full of antique doors shipped over one year for our stores. I kept these for the garden. The blue is just beautiful.
I hope you enjoyed the tour of my garden. Creating this backyard has brought me a lot of joy. Hopefully you can find inspiration here for your own outdoor space. Get growing! - Reza Leiaghat