In my latest video we visit a restored,1930s Spanish bungalow in Orange County. In keeping with a Mexican hacienda theme inspired by the famed La Quinta Resort, Nanci and Kevin Zinngrabe's urban succulent oasis includes sculptural cacti, euphorbias, aloes, agaves and more.
You'll love all the bright colors inspired by Mexican tile and Talavera, and the innovative ways the couple utilize limited space, create inviting outdoor living areas, muffle neighborhood noise, and maximize privacy.
The Zinngrabe's "Z Casa" is in Santa Ana’s Floral Park, an Orange County community of more than 600 vintage homes built from the 1920s through the 1950s.
The 8,000-square-foot lot on a busy corner includes a spa, water features, a garden potting bench, shelves that display succulent pots, and areas for grilling, dining and entertaining.
Especially noteworthy is how they've used vertical space for succulents. Tall specimens in narrow planters show to advantage against 6-foot, brick-topped stucco walls.
Cacti and euphorbias create a living art gallery and cast intriguing shadows throughout the day. Planters are conveniently sitting-height.
How the Zinngrabes interpret Mexican hacienda style
- Talavera and terra-cotta from Mexico
- A palette of blue, orange and golden brown
- Bricks in patterns
- Carved wood and wrought iron accents
- Smooth white stucco walls
- Mexican chiminea (a free-standing terracotta chimney)
Nanci's potting bench
Nanci's work table serves as a garden focal point, as do shelves that hold assorted Talavera pots.
Terracotta blends well with Talavera, and so do containers with a desert theme.
Nanci’s favorite succulents
Shown here: Agave attenuata, Agave macroacantha, Agave ovatifolia (Whale’s tongue agave), Agave tequilana, Aloe bainesi, Aloe ‘Blue Elf’, Aloe marlothii, barrel cactus, Coppertone stonecrop, Euphorbia ammak ‘Variegata’, Euphorbia trigona ‘Rubra’, Pedilanthus macrocarpus, sansevierias, Yucca aloifolia
Inside the historic house
Archways, weathered wood, wrought iron and hints of Old Mexico continue in the home’s interior.