Plaza Honors

A few years ago, someone told me I might like a small garden within the University of Arizona’s campus.

On my few visits to Tucson, I kept forgetting to look up the official, more floriferous line on the Women’s Plaza of Honor.

My last trip, I remembered to, enjoying it one warm Friday with someone else into gardens (and all things warmer) than her home in Ohio. I know two of the designers (it was a team effort of several award-winning landscape design professionals), so that added to the interest. Photos from 2/21/2014 –


The dying eucalyptus would be best in the mulch pile, they really detract fro all the good here. Those appear to be the U of A’s version of what globe willow or cottonwood are in NM…big trees that grow fast over thought about what such trees will become. It’s time to take out the trash. Onward…

color, negative space, low wall for hardening the edge…
various time periods and geographic influences of women

Too bad I can’t find a number of my other pictures (phone camera) from my Tucson trip, namely an Allan Houser sculoture one must have in such a setting in AZ and NM…it was of an Apache woman. Houser’s work is so smooth and stunning, if you haven’t seen it – AZ and NM

extraordinary use of ordinary concrete…swirls often work…
the blue (glass?) added a great touch to ordinary exposed aggregate concrete
always something to photograph on that campus…she parked bicycles, me her
…these low walls making the space…tile details in ordinary brick…
some celebrating special events or people, or just because…
ordinary gray concrete block or red brick walls, but forming the perfect backdrop to xeric plant massing….

Tucson is so refreshing in it’s embrace of desert plant symbols, compared to at least one of it’s southwestern sister towns’ uptightness. It’s interesting to compare those who added the celebrative spirit to Tucson’s horticulture (the two women I noted earlier are a huge part of this – Liba Wheat and Margaret West), versus the oppressive feel elsewhere and who is the cause of that. So important…maybe someday.

flowers are even fine, if used carefully…I’m beyond petal-pushing, in case you’ve had any questions…form first
more clever insetting of tile work and accents, on the paving
conversational seating within an old citrus grove…

There’s a few more details I’ll point out at this garden, some other time. With 41 40 draft posts in queue, in some state of completion, I don’t look for ideas; there are more than I even have time to post…and that’s me holding back.

Enjoy your weekend!


7 Replies to “Plaza Honors”

  1. This looks like a great garden to visit. You did an amazing job of capturing all the details that made it unforgettably southwestern. I especially love the arches and the mosaics. I have to admit, that although eucalyptus trees are amazingly unwise choices for the southwest, I adore their ghostly looming shapes. I would love to see a eucalyptus forest in Australia

    I would like to see Eucs in Australia, too…unusual forms. The garden is a must-see while in Tucson, and I need to go back since I missed some good shots, somehow…


  2. I really like that citrus bosque with the benches. Reminds me of the central park in San Miguel de Allende.

    I keep hearing about San Miguel de Allende – someday. That little bosque was priceless!


  3. Allan Houser sculpture! A tour of his sculpture ranch outside Santa Fe, where monumental sculptures are incorporated on winding paths in a native high-desert landscape, is a lesson in the friendship of art and nature.

    I visited an outdoor gallery in Tesuque almost 20 years ago, but the website I linked to sounds elsewhere? What I saw was art / nature, but it seemed in their valley.


  4. Really like the tile accents everywhere. For some reason I’m a patsy for mosaic type arrangements in garden settings. Also really like the citrus grove with seating. For some reason that suggests a place set apart – almost out of time and space – which is something I think I bring with me but then isn’t that part of any design? What the viewer brings?

    Petal pusher. Ha!

    40 posts in queue? Wowsers. Lots to look forward to!

    Seeing the Tucson use of moasics all over, I need to do this more…whether fragments of flagstone, brick, tile, concrete, whatever. You’re right on how that citrus sitting area works! Yes, a ways to go posting, between my paying job…


    1. Yes! I’m with Deb about how appealing the tile accents are. Like jewelry for the structures.

      Denny and I are moving in May; downsizing house & lot. I’ll be looking more at your posts for ideas…and if you go by our way, stop for a night so we can catch up.

      Jewlery – a good anology. Can’t wait to hear about your new place – need to plan a roadtrip down someday…that would be great!


  5. I love Tucson through your eyes! I never get over that way and look what I am missing.

    So much in your Old Pueblo, including the new downtown areas!


  6. Did a grove of trees, gravel, rill & benches in a client backyard….amongst the alle, garden rooms, pond, potager, outdoor kitchen….

    Ok, 2nd pic. The stones must be relaid, the tree has grown, as if they are jewels. Because they are.

    Love it when those bull horns in your forehead sprout !!

    Are the blue chips in the concrete that ‘new’ night time glow in the dark material?

    Garden & Be Well, XOT

    Sounds like a great garden retreat! You’re right to relay those rounded rocks – I often take for granted how dust and stuff blows in over time, but we shouldn’t accept that. Bull horns – oh yeah! Not sure on the chips – you may be right.


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