I tried to target the older, more established gardens on Sunday's tour, since I wanted a sense of how a native garden can mature. We stopped at a homeowner designed garden in Torrance first. There were a few things that I liked.
I liked the Carex Pansa lawn in the shade of this Chinese Elm. Foreground are flower stalks of Heuchera (Coral Bells) 'Wendy', which proved to be the most popular Heuchera selection that I saw all day. In fact, I can only remember one or two other selections. Next year: Heuchera 'Wendy' backlash!
The Torrance house had plentiful use of non-native but water-conserving plants such as those shown below that I thought a striking combination. Not that it wasn't delightful, but I had hoped to see more natives.
A stop later in the day showed good use of this Gilia tricolor. We liked its look here and at several other locations on the tour.
But again, the landscape combined native and non-native plants and I wished for more natives. I'm so demanding! Here we can see a rather sprawling lavender cluster at the right of the path and bright green leaves of a jasmine all along the sidewalk.
My favorite houses were located inland in a designated historical district that I was previously unaware of called Oxford Square near Crenshaw and Olympic. I didn't take pictures of the most peaceful garden, but I did take photos of the most striking garden. This garden comprised two houses side by side (same owner, one under renovation to become a rental with the main house planning to take a big chunk of the rental's back yard. It'll be an even more wonderfuller yard when complete.) The owner has landscaped the main house garden in what he described as "California Apocalyptica" - a term I could find nowhere else, but it's said to be what you might get when people disappear and only industrial and technological remnants remain among the returning natives (provided the weedy grasses and shit plants don't overwhelm and someone with well-developed garden sensibilities takes care of the place). Pictures below are of this garden.