Exterior Design Studies

In my neighborhood used to be a wonderful huge field full of Japanese “kuri” trees (Castanea crenata – Japanese chestnut).

One day, some works began around the field and my nightmare became true..
One more green oasis gone and 14 houses grew out of the ground, crouched together, stealing each other the light.

This precinct provides people with “cheap” houses. The company, which purchased the land, decided on prebuilding and selling later. Buyers don’t have great options to choose from before the houses are built.
To keep a low price, the exterior is also very simple and therefore makes a great study object!

Following, I want to share some thoughts about it with you.

The exterior should match the style of the house.
Is it given here?
However, I think not in an optimal way.
There is a lot to improve, although these improvements may also raise the price.
My opinion is though, that people tend to pay more when the outside is looking great and appealing.

Another factor is, that today people don’t want to spend their free time with garden maintenance.
This is one thing I cannot understand… Working with the soil and breathing the air cleaned by trees is helping to fight stress and depression. Maybe people don’t know, because they never tried..
However, back to topic.
This exterior is indeed very easy to maintain.
The plants chosen are more or less all very slowly growing, cheap and Japanese lawn need to be mowed only every other month, depending on the variety.
But is it looking nice?
Uhm… It could look better..
Is it cheap?
Lawn is one of the cheapest options when it comes to cover space with plants.
Don’t get me wrong, I like the possibilities grass can give in garden design!

Now we know the outlines, let’s switch to the details.

This house has an dark accent and a door in a different colour than the other houses. The tiles at the approach should underline the differnt colours. however, they are neither fitting to the broken tiles in front, nor to the door or the wall accents…


Here is the entrance right next to it. The colour-accents of the walls are not dark brown and the main colour is of a creme white.
The tiles in front of the entrance are light brown and fit better to the broken tiles and overall exterior.


Here we see an approach to one of the houses. It may be around 80cm wide. Imagine you are a young family and want children. Do you think a stroller is fitting easily through 80cm?
Or large shopping bags?
I think this approach is really too narrow!


Unfortunately, this picture is no high-quality. However, you can see the parking space, then a little lawn and behind it, again these broken tiles and concrete in front of the fence.
The second concrete area is in front of the living room.
Shouldn’t be the “garden” in front of that? Not concrete?
A little bit strange…
And finally my favorite.. We have trees in front of the house, but not in front of the garden. Everyone can easily step from the street on the lawn and look inside the windows. No fence, no plants to provide privacy. No wonder this house was one of the last to be sold…


Now, after a few months, almost all the properties are sold.
Most of them unchanged, but some people did some changes like installing a roof over their parking spaces or do some replanting.
What I recognized, the lawn isn’t doing well.. Until know the gaps didn’t really close, but weed is growing and growing.. Of course! There is no maintenance at all!
But a very bad thing is, they didn’t put a weed repelling sheet under the narrow gravel ways around the houses…
I think this is the best way to see, that these houses are reasonable. No houseowner with common sense would install gravel without a weed-sheet. It is just too much work to pull the weed out there and spraying is also not very popular..

I hope you enjoyed these small insights into house constructions in Japan and I hope I will soon find some time to introduce and approach to a high quality exterior!

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2 thoughts on “Exterior Design Studies

  1. The Japanese, and many Asian societies in general, are trading off their super rich DNA engrained appreciation of plant life for an academically tuned instant digital lifestyle…like I don’t know how to describe it; more than eighty percent of the population has myopia(looking at things too close, lack of sunlight and the colour green i.e. plants). You see these kids walking around with glasses and contacts, and it is not hereditary. There is even a “glasses” fashion…as if it’s a sexy thing ^^. I believe the culture is on the track of a future simply different from what it was, and if thats a destructive one, it doesn’t matter…seems.

    Sometimes I fantasise about quickly planting seeds everywhere at night, here and there, of this and that…I think if it was done a lot, all at once; everyone would see the reason why this stuff is excellent for life ^.-

    maybe, some day.

    still a few trees around for now, still time to think.

    half the salary men forgot their school trips though the woods a long time ago, instant noodles and brothels have clouded their vision, which is already manipulated by a 2D pane.

    1. Although we love green, we shouldn’t only focus on our own point of view. Everyone of the people involved has their reasons…
      The former owners of the property are an elderly couple, selling half of their very green property. The other half is still remaining and gives them more work than they can actually handle alone.
      The real estate company want to build reasonable homes. For them it is important, that they can sell the houses. In that area, they can not build only a few houses with great space for rich people, because those won’t sell. Means: small houses with small gardens..
      The people who buy there are families with children. The fathers at work all day and the wives busy with children, household and work.
      All of them might treasure their free time.
      And yes, there I have to agree, unfortunately seldom with gardening, because they might have forgotten about the positive effects..

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