Grass free yard in So Cal

Hi all,
I am looking for some "brainstorming" ideas for my backyard landscaping. I live near Pasadena. I think that is Zone 18 (?)
I have a "pool size" yard, surrounded by block wall, with a few trees (only 1 lemon tree can't be moved) and it's down at the end.
I started out wanting to do a flagstone patio in the center to extend the usability, then plant "shady" stuff all around the patio to keep it cooler. (e.g. http://www.redwoodhollow-lajolla.com/flagston.htm )
But I am open to considering other materials for the patio (still undecided), so this is one subject I'd like your thoughts on (Well, two - patio type and plant ideas and experience)
Then I thought - why not just get rid of all the grass, I just do more plants etc.... But I don't want to flagstone the .whole thing (too much $$ I think)
Please share experiences/thoughts/links on this.
Thanks
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

You re a few hours away from Las Vegas. Our water authority will actually pay you to remove grass, IF you follow their rules of inspection before you do it. We use a variety of crushed stone, river stone for a "dry river" sandstone and granite.
The site:
http://www.snwa.com/html/land_index.html
http://www.snwa.com/html/land_xeri.html
Oren "My doctor says I have a malformed public-duty gland and a natural deficiency in moral fiber, and that I am therefore excused from saving Universes."
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Thanks, they had some interesting info on that site, esp. for tree species. Our climate here is similar to Vegas, I think, perhaps a bit more rain in winter(?).....
Based on some of the info from snwa.com, I will be considering crape myrtles (tall types) and queen palms for my landscaping
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

You will like both...I removed alot of landscape of plants (30 or so) that caused leaves in the pool. Five trees came out, three to go. I put in four mature queen palms (36" triple tree and a single 48" box) and some giant bird of paradise in one corner of the lot, accented by low voltage lights. It's another world from when I bought the place. I've added seven more palms (blue fan, pony tail, Mexican fan, etc. I love the more exotic palms. I'm looking for a few kentia palms now....
Good luck
Oren "My doctor says I have a malformed public-duty gland and a natural deficiency in moral fiber, and that I am therefore excused from saving Universes."
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

These links weren't working when I tried them, but the main site was down, too, so maybe there's some system-wide problem.
A friend used to work at the water conservation demonstration garden in Las Vegas. He now has his own landscaping business (http://www.schillinghorticulture.com /), but we still visit the demonstration garden there on trips out to Las Vegas. We have family there, so we come to the city quite often. Since we're not gambling/casino types, the gardens are one of our favorite places to stop by.
--
Warm Regards,

Claire Petersky
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Fri, 25 Nov 2005 18:02:46 GMT, "Claire Petersky"

Next trip consider the Ethel M chocolate factory (Henderson) ...they have a massive cactus garden.
Oren
"My doctor says I have a malformed public-duty gland and a natural deficiency in moral fiber, and that I am therefore excused from saving Universes."
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
This is a test; pls ignore (sorry, but some of my posts have gone missing)
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Steve wrote:

Extend the paving with decomposed granite (DG) over ground cloth. Use composition bender boards to frame the DG. Plant perennials and low shrubs in beds at the edges. You can even create walkways with the DG, forming island beds. Go to my garden Web site (per the signature below) and navigate to my Backyard page.
--
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.