Preston Hollow Estate

Photos: Jason Anderson with JA2Photography

This Preston Hollow estate looks exactly like what I imagine Prince William and Kate would choose if they moved to Dallas. It has all the beauty and elegance of a modern-day castle while remaining family friendly.

That’s a hard combination to get right, but builder Joe Kain always gets it right. Kain was brought on board to renovate, update and enlarge 5424 Edlen Drive several years ago. He’s known for his state-of-the-art design and execution, so I’m not surprised that it turned out to be exquisite. If you’ll remember he built 40 Braewood Place, a completely different kind of knock-your-socks- off home.

The estate was originally built in 1992 and had an entirely different look. In 2007 Kain took it from a Texas farmhouse to the present day modern castle. The foundation was in great shape, so he took the center down to the studs keeping 3,000 square feet and added another 6,104, which means there are now 9,104 square feet to love. So, it essentially became a brand new custom home.

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Now is the time to start planning your backyard pool, says Harold Leidner. Find out why winter is a great time to get started.

Well, the holidays are over, it’s cold outside, and everyone is back to work and school. Now it’s back to the grind and the long haul till spring break. Maybe you’ve been thinking about putting in a pool, or maybe you’ve been remembering those warm summer days and how nice it would have been to have a pool in the backyard? You are not alone, but is now the time to start thinking about getting that pool project? We asked our friends over at Harold Leidner Landscape Architects to suggest a few reasons why you might want to get that project going.
Jump to see five reasons why you should start building your backyard oasis right now!

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HLC Frost Cloth

With “Icemaggedon” hitting soon, and the cold weather officially upon us, it’s time to keep an eye out on protecting your plants from the freezing temperatures. We’ve asked noted landscape architect, Harold Leidner, to provide some insight and suggestions for protecting those plants from the cold temperatures.

Freeze Protection Methods

One of the essential freeze protection items that we install on all our projects is a rain and freeze sensor on the irrigation system. This sensor (which can be hard wired or wireless) activates once the temperature drops below 40 degrees and prevents the irrigation system from operating in cold temperatures and adding any water to the plants that may cause damage.

HLC Temperature detectorAnother primary method of protection those plans is to use a frost protection fabric or freeze cloth over the top of the plants. This fabric, which can usually be found at any nursery or home improvement store, will help wick water away from the plants, provide an additional layer of protection and help prevent any ice from forming on the plants.

We typically use short wood stakes to ‘tent’ the frost cloth above the plants and also use landscape pins to anchor the fabric down so windy conditions don’t blow it away. If the cold temps sneak up on you and you’re in a pinch, a good old bed sheet will work as well. (Just don’t use the nice ones!)

Plants That Need Protection

Most plant varieties sold at nurseries and used in the Dallas area will be cold hardy for the climate. However, there are certain varieties of plants, usually tropicals, that will need a little extra protection.

Palms are one of the primary plants that we take care to protect from cold temperatures. Sago palms (Cycas revoluta) certainly are fragile to the cold and will need to be covered. Windmill Palms (Trachycarpus fortunei) are generally cold hardy, but the trunks can be wrapped with a blanket or frost protection cloth. Other plants that are susceptible to freezing are Oleander (Nerium oleander), Variegated Ginger (Alpina vittata) and the vine Fig Ivy (Ficus pumila). All of which could benefit from the protection of a freeze cloth.

We find annuals to be optional but some of our clients prefer that we also cover their newly planted winter seasonal color like Pansies and Cyclamen. Any containers or potted plants that are not connected to irrigation or drainage, we would suggest simply moving them into the garage to weather the frigid night time temperatures.

Miss those 100 degree days yet?

Need help preparing for freezing weather? Contact the talented staff at Harold Leidner Landscape Architects to guide you.

HLC Freeze Protection

With the Thanksgiving holiday hitting this week and the cold weather officially upon us, it’s time to keep an eye out on protecting your plants from the freezing temperatures. We’ve asked noted landscape architect, Harold Leidner, to provide some insight and suggestions for protecting those plants from the cold temperatures.

Freeze Protection Methods

One of the essential freeze protection items that we install on all our projects is a rain and freeze sensor on the irrigation system. This sensor (which can be hard wired or wireless) activates once the temperature drops below 40 degrees and prevents the irrigation system from operating in cold temperatures and adding any water to the plants that may cause damage.

HLC Temperature detector

 

Another primary method of protection those plans is to use a frost protection fabric or freeze cloth over the top of the plants. This fabric, which can usually be found at any nursery or home improvement store, will help wick water away from the plants, provide an additional layer of protection and help prevent any ice from forming on the plants.

We typically use short wood stakes to ‘tent’ the frost cloth above the plants and also use landscape pins to anchor the fabric down so windy conditions don’t blow it away. If the cold temps sneak up on you and you’re in a pinch, a good old bed sheet will work as well. (Just don’t use the nice ones!)

Plants That Need Protection

Most plant varieties sold at nurseries and used in the Dallas area will be cold hardy for the climate. However, there are certain varieties of plants, usually tropicals, that will need a little extra protection.

Palms are one of the primary plants that we take care to protect from cold temperatures. Sago palms (Cycas revoluta) certainly are fragile to the cold and will need to be covered. Windmill Palms (Trachycarpus fortunei) are generally cold hardy, but the trunks can be wrapped with a blanket or frost protection cloth. Other plants that are susceptible to freezing are Oleander (Nerium oleander), Variegated Ginger (Alpina vittata) and the vine Fig Ivy (Ficus pumila). All of which could benefit from the protection of a freeze cloth.

We find annuals to be optional but some of our clients prefer that we also cover their newly planted winter seasonal color like Pansies and Cyclamen. Any containers or potted plants that are not connected to irrigation or drainage, we would suggest simply moving them into the garage to weather the frigid night time temperatures.

Miss those 100 degree days yet?

Need help preparing for freezing weather? Contact the talented staff at Harold Leidner Landscape Architects to guide you.

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Troy Aikman just purchased this home on St. Johns for $4.3 million. 

This just in from the lovely, amazing, and talented Alan Peppard: Troy Aikman has bought his second Highland Park home in three months, this time opting for the 6,000-square-foot former home of reporter and author Jane Wolfe.

The mansion on St. Johns was purchased by Aikman for a confirmed $4.3 million. Aikman’s last purchase was an 11,000-square-foot Mount Vernon manse built by Tatum Brown on Normandy that is just incredible inside and out, with beautiful landscaping by Harold Leidner.

3801 Normandy

 

Aikman’s home on Normandy was built by Tatum Brown and features a lush landscape by Harold Leidner

While the home is gorgeous and has entertained and hosted notables such as former Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf, the 73-year-old red brick estate may not be long for this world. From Peppard:

Aikman has long expressed to friends his plan to build a new home and the Wolfe home sits on a stunning promontory overlooking the Connor Lake section of Turtle Creek.

Even more interesting is how the transaction between Aikman and Wolfe was completed. Wolfe, whose family owns the Columbus Dispatch and is considered the first family of Ohio, is also a well-known author and definitely has a flair for the dramatic.

It took an exchange of autographs to seal the purchase. Wolfe is the author of The Murchisons, a book chronicling the family of Dallas Cowboys founder Clint Murchison Jr.

“When we were back and forth negotiating the price, he asked me to sign a copy of my Murchison book,” she says. “I asked him for a signed Troy Aikman jersey.”

To celebrate the closing, Troy and Jane and her daughter, Lee Harris, had dinner at Fireside Pies.
“He gave me a big, beautiful jersey,” Jane says, “and I gave him a big Murchison book inscribed, “To the best Cowboy ever.”

Fabulous story! And now we must wonder, will Troy hire Tatum Brown, a CandysDirt.com Approved Builder, to construct his new Highland Park home overlooking Turtle Creek? In the meantime, check out these photos of Wolfe’s beautiful home, complete with mirrored ceilings and leopard-print carpet on the staircase!

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9131 Gunnison Front A lot of the homes with pools in Lake Highlands are just basically concrete holes in the ground. I look at them and I think, “Gosh, if that were my house, I would have done that pool much differently!”

9131 Gunnison Living

If you dream of living in Lake Highlands but want a custom pool (one designed by Harold Leidner perhaps?), then this is the perfect home for you. Just off of Skillman north of Walnut Hill is 9131 Gunnison, where you’ll find more than 2,300 square feet of living space in a contemporary candy-coated shell.

9131 Gunnison Dining

This home has been completely redone and every inch is just perfect. Built in 1978, this house has three bedrooms and two bathrooms, and two rear garage spots. It’s priced well at $330,000 considering the amount of elbow grease that went into this home prior to it hitting MLS.

9131 Gunnison Kitchen

In the living room there is a vaulted ceiling with a gorgeous fireplace and hardwood floors. French doors open to the backyard, where your perfect pool and landscape will be built. From there, you can check out the kitchen, which features stainless appliances, a huge island, and a breakfast nook with another pair of French doors.

9131 Gunnison Breakfast

Upstairs is the master suite which has a huge window that overlooks the backyard. This is a wonderful space that can fit oversized furniture with plenty of elbow room left over. A vaulted ceiling makes the whole room feel even bigger, and of course, there’s a ceiling fan, too.

9131 Gunnison Master

The master bath has a huge shower with fresh tile, but sadly, no tub. Still, it’s a great retreat with granite counters on a spacious double vanity that has tons of storage room. The vanity lights and mirrors add visual interest, too.

9131 Gunnison Master Bath

And the backyard, is, well, a blank slate. There’s a small deck attached to the home, but other than that you don’t have to fight any bushes or trees for your vision of the perfect summer oasis to take shape! I can’t wait to see what you build!

9131 Gunnison Backyard

Headington Condo Outside

Harold LeidnerIt’s hard to find a better landscape architect than Harold Leidner. I’d hazard to say that few, if any, can match his eye for how landscapes interact with their surroundings, and how to make modern design look and feel organic.

He’s best known for his amazing work on the 21st floor penthouse at the Ritz Carlton Residences that was recently purchased by Charles and Moll Anderson. Featuring bold shapes and textures, this project is a feast for the eyes.

Browse Leidner’s projects and designs on his Houzz page or find out more about his work on his website.

CandysDirt.com: Where are you from?

Harold Leidner: Born and raised in Dallas. Great place to live and work.

CD: How did you get into landscape architecture?

Leidner: Started in high school when I was mowing lawns and taking care of landscapes. It piqued my interest in the design of landscapes and the value of beautiful properties and gardens.

CD: Innovative outdoor design is a hallmark of your brand. What inspires you most?

Leidner: Sophisticated and modern design that is well detailed. I also enjoy seeing and incorporating unique items in the garden that are not typically found there. The recent Chihuly exhibit at the Arboretum was a great example. Having the artistry, color, and delicacy of the glass blended into the gardens was beautiful.

CD: Where is home for you in Dallas?

Leidner: I live in the Prestonwood neighborhood off Preston and Arapaho. We are fortunate to have a great lots that back up to a natural creek.

CD: And you drive ….let me guess, Mercedes Benz?

Leidner: BMW X5 M. Fun to drive and I love the gadgets.

CD: What is your favorite ‘hood in Dallas and why?

Leidner: Tough to call. Many great areas in Dallas like Preston Hollow, Kessler Park and Lakewood. I would probably say Uptown, mostly because I’m a Mavs fan.

CD: What project are you most proud of?

Leidner: Now that is even more difficult. I have had the pleasure of working for many wonderful clients and on many gorgeous projects. One of my recent favorites was a residence we completed in Highland Park for Betty Lou Phillips. Combination of a beautiful site, superb architecture along with a client with an exquisite design sense.

CD: Likewise, what was your most challenging or memorable project?

Leidner: My most memorable project was probably the penthouse terraces we completed a couple years ago at the Ritz Carlton Residences in Dallas. A once in a lifetime project overlooking the skyline of downtown Dallas. Spectacular views, especially at night. The construction was an immense challenge however, in getting all the workers, tools and materials from the ground to the 21st floor. Not as easy as you might think.

Headington Condo outside 2

CD: Has your work taught you any life lessons?

Leidner: Everything changes except the completion date.

CD: What does the future of design look like?

Leidner: Our designs and clients are all pushing towards a clean and modern design style that fits their lifestyle. Fortunately we are seeing more residential architecture lean a bit more towards modern, which allows us to respond with luxurious landscapes and gardens that simplify the outdoor living experience and enjoyment of nature.

CD: If you ever change careers for an encore you’ll…

Leidner: Become a doctor like my daughter.

CD: Do you have a second home?

Leidner: Besides my office and car, no.

I’m in looooooooove!

It just took one look at this magnificent home — 4612 Watauga in Bluffview — and I was swept off my feet! The front of the home is so lush and gorgeous, you can practically imagine the Harold Leidner landscape was airlifted in from the Dallas Arboretum. And the backyard is just as beautiful, with a patterned stone and grass lawn surrounding the pool and loggia.

This home, built in 2000, has five bedrooms, four full baths and two powder rooms, three living areas and a five-car garage over 7,863 square feet. The great thing about this gorgeous Mediterranean being in Bluffview is that a home of its size won’t crowd the 1.3-acre lot. It’s marketed by the phenomenal Dave Perry-Miller himself for $5,795,000.

If you thought the exterior was beautiful, check out the insides! This home is so open that it’s perfect for entertaining. There are tons of fireplaces, too, making this one cozy house for upcoming holiday fetes!

I’m not usually a fan of faux finishes or plaster, but this dining room with a coved ceiling just kills me. I bet dinners are elegant affairs at this table, and intimate too if done by the light of that amazing chandelier.

The kitchin is a stunner, too. The countertops look like some kind of red soapstone or marble. Whatever they are, they are super sophisticated and fit perfectly with the soft paint and dark wooden cabinets. The appliances are what you’d expect from a home in this price range, and the island is generously sized.

Now, the master bedroom looks a little underfurnished. That could be because the owners or stager wanted to play up the gigantic size of the room, which tops out at 27 x 22. I love the tray ceiling, too. It makes this room feel like a master bedroom right out of a castle.

I am a little bummed that, although there are four full baths in this home, we only get one photo in this listing! Oh well, the rest of the house is beautiful enough to help me forget about that!

What do you think: Does this home just kill you or what?