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"Landscraping" did it. Soil from the pool created the grassy hill next to it.

Changes of level create an unexpected topography and increased privacy in this once-flat yard in Chatsworth, California. A carefully orchestrated plan allows the yard to have a sunken pool 2 feet below grade, a trellis with its base at the original level of the yard, and a gently sloping grassy area that rolls down from a slumpstone wall.

"Landscraping" is what Santa Monica landscape architect Michael Kobayashi calls the yard conversion--much of the soil excavated for the pool was merely moved to one side to create a grassy hill. The soil was backfilled against the wall, making it appear shorter--on the neighbor's side it measures a full 6 feet.

Despite the sunken pool, the yard drains well. A surveyor determined the proper grading levels so that runoff flows to the street. Additional drain lines run behind the brick walls that rise from the pool on the three raised sides.

The owner-builder is Gary Peterson of American Landscape, Inc.
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Date:Sep 1, 1984
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