Photos by David Cobb.
There is no single correct design for a garden or pool area. As areas meant for relaxation, each one can be as unique as their owners, suited for different purposes and personalities.
We look at three different areas: a tropical garden oasis, a prairie paradise and a pool house built to create a vacation home in a couple’s backyard, each completely different and uniquely beautiful.
Three Gardens, Three Lifestyles
William Hawk creates a tropical showplace in a rural setting.
Can a sprawling five acres in rural Oklahoma City become a secluded tropical oasis? William Hawk’s garden is proof such a garden can be created.
Hawk has been interested in gardens and horticulture since childhood. His great-grandfather was a land run homesteader. Hawk worked in his parents’ vegetable garden and his mother loved flowers.
“I’m just carrying on a family interest,” Hawk says. “On my first visit to this property, I was inspired by the abundant trees, the elevations and raised beds providing panoramic views.”
What he created during the past three decades is a tropical paradise. Lush gardens surround his country home and vast, sprawling lawn. Prolific perennials add brilliant color and texture.
Hawk, an anesthesiologist, says, “My profession requires attention to precise detail, timing and sequential planning. Likewise, a garden demands the birth of an idea, enhanced by creative planning and strategic implementation. I plan and nurture my garden, then watch as nature brings the idea of my garden to reality.”
His magnificent water garden draws the greatest attention from Hawk’s visitors. It brims with numerous exotic plants, koi fish and tropical guppies, and Amazon and Victoria lily pads hosting turtles and frogs.
“The lily pad is an oasis,” Hawk says. “I enjoy all my property but my favorite view is from the upper level of the yard, looking down on the lily pond. When I stand there I feel like I’m in the tropics.”
A striking variety of contemporary sculptures add personality to the gardens, some reflecting Hawk’s travels to exotic locales. In spite of the secluded location, the garden is easy to find. Who could miss the large green metal sculpture of a hand concealing Hawk’s mailbox at the entrance to his private haven?
Hawk tells garden enthusiasts: “Follow your passion for plants. Experiment. Find what works for you and your yard. Plant what you think is beautiful, then build on plants that do well for you.”