Walking Oregon

I enjoy walking, to get a closer look at what lurks on the streets I drive or ride along.

With the same-old that I just can’t stand, there’s also much in the way of interesting architecture and plantings. And potential for better garden spaces. I’ll mostly let you guess which I think is good, bad, ugly, or even downright evil!

What causes a culture to make the commitment to embrace better horticulture – a better life?

Have you ever taken such a walk? Another breezy 75F afternoon was perfect for my task – 1 mile of Oregon Street! Photos from 3/17/2014 –

a candidate for a few discerning Portland landscapes?

a pair of tall , native Torrey Yucca…

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invasive Siberian Elm…poorly-adapted without pipes to root into…
always money for gravel…and for fake lawn at $14 / square foot…
Purple Robe Locust replaced the Las Palmas’ Mexican Fan Palms that froze in 2011…
but pretty spring flowers…

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almost works, just a bit aggressive on the Texas Sage pruning…

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pueblo style facade  for a plain office building…they did try, but…..
any plantings there before?…or could some appropriate plants be added?
piñons, lawn, junipers, ash…just like their other landscapes in the region
scattered Autumn Sage, Spanish Broom,…a rock-lined swale for accent, that could be used for water harvesting and some nicer plantings…I think I’ve seen this before…..

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‘Tam’ Juniper, Softleaf Yucca planted on 2′ centers…
an old Piñon…an Olive recovering from 2/2011
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the bitter end of an arroyo…
good bones with boulders, gravel, and dwarf tree accent – Texas Mountain Laurel…

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this strip had more plants…now a lone Deergrass…rock meanders nicely-implemented
some Red Yucca and Apache Plume made it…

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mature Arizona Rosewood, another great evergreen dwarf tree for tighter spaces…an all-too-rare narrow form of Arizona Cypress…
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looking downright Madrean…is that a Bigtooth Maple, too?
Turpentine Bush hanging in there…
common Fruitless Mulberry, unsure how long they are practical to work around…nothing can be planted under them, their roots make that a futile exercise…

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popular Red-Tip Photinia…this yellowing chlorosis problem is the rule in the SW…
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Powis Castle makes this
that close to Mexico!
an El Paso duo must include Honey Mesquite and Hesperaloe (here, Giant or Coahuilan Hesperaloe)…
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or Honey Mesquite and Texas Sage…

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or Vitex / Chaste Tree and Trailing Rosemary…and a Desert Candle…
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neglected apartments with great bones are all over…imagine how this gem 1/2 mile from a major university and downtown would be treasured and renovated  (and priced) in Austin…Denver…LA…
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that’s was some detailing and craftsmanship
my neighborhood…some amazing mansions (I’m not in one)…

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art gallery owner…
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interesting sculpture…
intersting sculpture at their gallery…
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poor Southern Magnolia (right)…
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more apartments, generous balconies…
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well-maintained apartments…no interest in the landscape…
only basins are needed to match the containers…
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David was there!
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9 Replies to “Walking Oregon”

  1. Interesting walk. I enjoyed seeing all the little details. I really enjoyed the serpentine boulders with different sized gravel on either side. As for plantings, I loved the mountain laurel (I could almost smell it – yum!), autumn sage and the purple robe locust (never seen that plant before, but it looks pretty). Funny – I chose all the plants with blooms! haha But I also liked the powis castle and hated the photinia (never have cared much for that plant). And the trailing rosemary is great, too – love the scent of rosemary! Maybe someone will make something fabulous out of that apartment building – and keep those cool architectural touches! I hope it doesn’t end up as the future site of a McDonald’s!

    That street does have some character, and plenty of details…an upcoming post will be at the rose garden, as they are really starting to look good. Hopefully, the apartment will end up in the right hands…at least there’s a McDonalds a few blocks away, but it’s miles to the nearest Chili’s…

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  2. I like those honey mesquites! …and I know you do! :)

    The buildings are just gorgeous! I see your vision for the apts….BIGTIME!

    That I do…wait until I do more of a tour of the cooler trees at UTEP… Powerball is at 40-mil!

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  3. I think I like the the mesquite and texas sage the best. I also the liked the rosemary and dasylirion. UTEP is cool also, oh and the big yuccas! I liked parts of everything. ha.

    It was hard to decide, so I just put 1/2 of my walk pics in! So much, and with this weather, even better…

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  4. Just got to know the palm tree story! Where I grew up the little Mexican fan palms across the street went up in flames more than once. I guess the teens were bored…

    Me too, but fire might be involved here, too! In your case, probably some teens / future botanists, who hated palms and wanted live oaks instead? (not me, I like oaks and palms:)

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  5. Oh yes! If only we could find those Torrey Yucca to try out here in Portland.

    The neglected apartment buildings were gorgeous, the pueblo style facade on the office building, pretty darn sad…

    I thought of you seeing those with the street sign…I should hunt down some small Y. torreyi (and Y. faxoniana)… Yes, maybe those offices were built in the Santa Fe Style craze of the 80’s, but the wind knocked the howling coyotes off?

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  6. You make a good walking partner. I had a great time. The home and gallery sculptures were especially whimsical. They make quite a statement.

    You are so right about those apartments in Austin. Before long they’d be redone using top of the line finishes then priced to match. (Or as likely lately – torn down and replaced by high rise condos).

    Ha ha! It was cool running into some interest, among the neglect and potential! Months ago over breakfast, I overheard 2 women in property management saying they were from Austin, amazed at some of my neighborhood’s homes and buildings… If I win Powerball, I’ll renovate so people of average means can enjoy, while I make a more modest profit.

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  7. Nice walk and a good lesson on what works and what doesn’t. We need to finish off our dry creek this year. Those Baja Beach stones are nice but expensive here.

    I once tried to explain to a coworker in DC about the school buses picking up students at the border but she couldn’t quite grasp the concept. Walking across the border just to buy lunch was even more confusing.

    That it was, not to mention what sort-of-works, that’s everywhere and we’re forced to work around! The border really makes it interesting here, even more before the drug cartel voilence across the way.

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  8. Loved seeing everything on your walk but the art gallery sculptures were awesome! (To me).

    A great way to play hooky, but I missed the sculptures until I walked it!

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