Stopping by Another Hospital

Returning from my jazz party trip, I stopped at the far east side of El Paso to see what I had missed on a project addition of mine installed 2 years ago.

The Quercus buckleyi are doing well, as is this portion of the only Cynodon dactylon lawn on the hospital campus.


The oaks in the entry alcove are struggling, as are the Nolina.


The portion of lawn in front is not so happy; when I walked over it, the rotting, anaerobic smell of over-watering was obvious.

Of course, I wonder if the facilities manager or other administrators here actually are holding community movies projected against the back wall? That was one curve ball thrown at me, resulting in my having to take out a few red oaks, even though they would not block views. My guess is no, and for that, I had to fight not to move all trees off the lawn to appease the non-designer admin people.

I either had 3 or 4 trees moved from the lawn opposite the walkway. I hope it was not another apparent fail, like their community / hospital kitchen garden whim…


From the above, you might see another blog post coming on about shaping grasses and plants for no reason, over-watering to increase greenery, etc. If so, you’re right.

For now, some of the jazz party in Odessa the previous night.

The musicianship was stellar, and dressing up made sense for that occasion.

I enjoyed watching this older couple finally dance. His wife wanted to dance immediately, while he was tired and just wanted to sit down before dancing.

I bet they have some history in Odessa.

A final positive note: the granite boulder-covered mountains near Sierra Blanca.


About half-way from my home to Odessa, I always enjoy driving both directions through them. The Yucca torreyi with Dasylirion leiophyllum on the slopes always show off the west Texas ruggedness and hospitality.

5/31/17 weather: 83 / 58 / T


Focal Points in the Flatlands

Warm winds blowing, heat ‘n’ blue sky
And a road that goes forever…
I’m goin’ to TexasChris Rea, “Texas”

This weekend, I took a road trip to a jazz party in Odessa, Texas. It’s been running as long in years as my age is.

Crossing the Pecos River and continuing to enter a seemingly featureless setting, Yucca elata disappeared as Yucca campestris took its place.



I stopped by my father’s WWII flight training post outside what’s left of Pyote and the Rattlesnake Bomber Base. Checking ahead of each step, of course.


The main hangar is barely there, and below, the base was later re-purposed into…


…a juvenile correction center. Even that didn’t last, though Pyote alone might be really good punishment!


Then it was Monahans, the town and the Ward County Courthouse where my late parents were married.


The flags and this corner monument area aligns well with the courthouse, from where one passes by. I overexposed the allee of Quercus virginiana looking to the courthouse, so here it is looking away from the courthouse.


Then there were this Yucca rostrata, at the end of the alley I was using to get back to the main street, pointing my now-washed car back onto the freeway.


The jazz and my room later that night were great, too! Odessa – no pictures this time.

5/24/17 weather: 95 / 58 / 0.00

Hospital: Daytime This Time

A coworker has accompanied me every few weeks to bustling El Paso, so I can take care of some wrap-up work.

Combined with barbecue at 2 restaurants, dinner time trips caused too many late arrivals here to see much. This time was a morning trip to close out bank accounts, so I finally saw my work in daylight.

Without overplanting, this new landscape is thin. Some looks good…


…some other plants and many grasses not so good, the daytime arrival under a scorching May sun revealed the brown, bad news.

And poorly-placed signage added to a few changes. Striping seems less obtrusive, until the owner implements their wayfinding consultant’s excellent signage


Out the canopy-shaded walkway to the front doors, the Salvia clevelandii are already growing in to soften the Yucca rostrata.


So Cal: meet the Texas Big Bend. This side was barely interesting to me originally.


It now may be my favorite spot there; the curtain wall effect with the simple yucca and shrub grouping is better than I envisioned.


Oh yeah, Hueco boulders and yuccas. Or, I need to branch out more from using scenes from desert hikes and mountain biking.

Finally, I’m including my plant lists…



The clouds are mostly where I had to change some symbols that my CAD program didn’t generate at the correct size.

Salvia clevelandii again –



The break patio, some more concrete seat walls. And after the monsoon season, time to prune up the Forestiera neomexicana.


The mostly unoccupied medical office building (MOB) has this great razor-like entry canopy.


It’s flanked on either side by a spare but purposed green ribbon between a tree grove for shade…Prosopis glandulosa trees and Baccharis x starn groundcovers.

And a rhythm of Dasylirion wheeleri of course, every 12 feet or so.

The bump-outs use many Hueco boulders filled in with spikier or flowering desert plants: Agave parryi ‘Estrella’, Chrysactinia mexicana, Fouquieria splendens, and Dasylirion wheeleri included.


And out via the service road, with a swale and Sporobulus wrightii along it. Plus Larrea tridentata, Fouquieria splendens, an Agave lechuguilla beyond the swale, to tie in with the desert background.


The blank area between the grasses and curb is an 8 foot wide, future walking path. I prefer compacted, small crushed gravel – I’m sure the owner will do pricier concrete.

I’m showing some of the good parts; I’ll try and follow up sometime with some odd plant issues I saw driving onto the project.

5/16/17 weather: 76 / 55 / T