Associates Part 1

I take notice of plant groupings growing in the same spot with identical conditions. Yet when it’s time to design, I rarely apply any of that.

Architecture, busy-ness, and dealing with client realities / curveballs take over.

I wish that wasn’t so. This is from a 9/2017 trip to the Big Bend, between Lobo and Valentine in Texas.

Another rest area in the middle of nowhere with a large yucca…


Yucca faxoniana / Palm or Faxon Yucca, at least 20′ tall.


And what else?

And a gentle reminder, this won’t look 50% as good without the yucca.


Do you ever take advantage of groupings in the wild, then create areas in your garden around those groupings? How successful are they?

I’m already thinking of a simple way to use the above plants in a purposed design for a typical space, where we can’t rely on miles of expansive scenery. I might share a sketch or two of that soon.


One Reply to “Associates Part 1”

  1. What a great post! I totally do! I find I do this especially with shade groupings for some reason. Probably because shade and dense shade are such a problem area for homeowners. I look at stuff I see on the trails….the understory trees first, and then the plants. And of course if it works there in the wild with no irrigation being the major plus then it’s going to translate into somebody’s yard and it makes my job oh so easy.

    Thanks! I’ve envisioned many posts like this – this one of a few others. I’ve sketched combos on hikes – rarely applied. Shade combos – you’re onto something, and that comes down to less diversity and more purpose. Key also is to turn people onto the more subtle beauty in shade, over the brash beauty in sun.


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