Streetscapes: Buffering and Visibility by Using Better Plants

At my day job as a planner, the desired forms of various development types has become a topic thanks to a few applicants.

Part of that form is the “buffer” and the degree one should hide or just soften different but adjacent land uses. Related to that is the form seen from the street and sidewalk – the public realm – crucial yet often marginalized.


Those car dealerships are owned by the same person, their entire length softened but provided with visibility using native, low water-use plants. This is an effective buffer, for the land use or zone.

Outside Fouquieria splendens, Yucca elata, Dasylirion wheeleri, Echinocereus coccineus, and E. triglochidiatus were employed.

Inside, there are more Fouquieria splendensYucca elata that are massive and sometimes multi-trunked, and Dasylirion wheeleri, plus the occasional Ferocactus wislizenii.


An important point is how well this planting does its job most of the year, when it isn’t flowering.

The effect with sleek new vehicles is stunning and interstellar!