Landscape Violations

Does anyone remember hanging on every word of “Glamour Don’ts” when they were teenagers? That was the column in Glamour magazine relating to transgressions in fashion laws, which can still be found at as “Don’t of the Day”. For you non-Glamour readers in the bunch, the column decries things like the horror of underwear lines showing through in the fanny area of your slacks and hair worn so long as to look like Morticia of the Adams family. You get the drift.

This posting is the first of a regular “Landscaping Don’ts” aimed at notions of landscaping design in the residential department. (The man I work for suggested the term  “Landscape Violations”, which would work as well.) An obvious one would be red mulch, a color one would never, ever find in nature.

Here we go.


Near me in Stamford, Connecticut, a great many homes have a rimmed their properties with large stones. To me it’s somewhat violent looking, to have a line of large, jagged rocks lined up along the side of the road to what purpose? Preventing errant parking violations? How about a sign?  Nothing subtle here. I see these stone barriers everywhere. I wonder if one contractor did it with the numerous homes he built and then others followed suit. Sometimes, driving to work in the morning I am reminded of the Flintstones.

What’s your opinion on this?


About christinedarnelldesignstudio

Christine Darnell Design Studio is a landscape and garden design studio in Chester, CT. Imaginative plant combinations characterize the work with an artist’s eye towards texture and color. A strong commitment to environmentally considerate design runs through the practice, the support of local nurseries, and guidance towards the most environmentally sustainable materials and products. Adjunct Professor, Horticulture Dept. of Naugatuck Valley Community College, Waterbury, CT , Wetlands Commissioner for the Town of Chester, Vice President, APLD, Connecticut Chapter.
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4 Responses to Landscape Violations

  1. Laura says:

    I agree that the practice of setting random stones along the edge of the road looks hostile. I have always been repelled by this, especially when people paint the stones white, as though this somehow makes them look better. This must be illegal because the stones are clearly in the easement zone of the property, and the towns should enforce the requirement to keep this area open and accessible.
    P.S., I think your idea of Landscape Violations is fun, and I look forward to future updates!

  2. Debbie says:

    Hi Christine,

    I’m so excited I stumbled upon your blog…Stamford, Ct caught my eye. I agree those stones are very violent looking but I imagine they were put there after at least ‘lawn job’, you know, when a car drives over the grass and does tons of damage – think divets on steriods!

  3. Scott says:

    Hi Christine,

    It was nice to see you yesterday in Greenwich! Glad to have found your blog, also.

    This is a great topic, and pairs nicely with Billy Goodnick’s “Crimes against Horticulture” ( I agree with you in regard to these barrier stones. They have the feel of a motorway in a National Park (a place where this works). Their location in this picture, also overwhelms the lovely stonewall. Look forward to he next violation!

    • Scott –
      It was great to see you again too. It was an enjoyable event, with good company.
      Thank you for telling me about Billy Goodnick’s collection of images – they are very, very funny!
      I am going to share that site with friends.

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