Patio Home Progress

Most of a growing season later, a decent monsoon season in there, and two tiny, new garden spaces…on the sandy bluffs west of the Rio Grande.

Albuquerque’s west mesa has some of the most amazingly warm, soft breezes of anywhere I’ve been.

Here, the owner is really connected to his plantings, then sharing it all with his array of friends. And did I say he likes to work in the garden? Yet I design low-maintenance and low-water-use, anyway, because it’s only right.

maybe Predock would be proud of this 1970-ish La Luz patio home garden redo…maybe…I like the concrete lintels, and the colorful containers for foothills-native Beargrass…lighter, green foliage dancing against the earthy stucco walls…and another accessory used

Continue reading “Patio Home Progress”


Santa Fe – More Than Monet

Many people see Santa Fe romantically from vacations or the media. It’s a marketing and tourism success, starting with the early 1900’s plaza area face-lift and gentrification since, but rarely very deep.

But how about Santa Fe from a horticultural standpoint? Past, present, and possible…via reality and place.

A tour through my landscape architect’s eyes; a prelude to my upcoming presentation at next month’s master gardener’s symposium. It’s more than Monet.

a 1500′ climb up to Santa Fe from the last of the Chihuahuan Desert north of Albuquerque…the distant Sangre de Cristo mountains are the southernmost end of the Rocky Mountains

Continue reading “Santa Fe – More Than Monet”

Garden Designers Roundtable – Enclosure vs. Exposure

I’ve lived in 2 countries, visited many more, and I’ve been in all but a hand full of US states – by 18. Many more now, with my observations heightened over my aging memory. All that in more different ecoregions than I can recall off hand. Each has their own quality, right down to personality.

I could never put my finger on why some places that people built all over, either lured me into them to linger, or had me say “next” and run fast from them.

It was how the successful spaces worked – knowing when to let a view hang out, or hold that view back. It’s skill and scale, dont’cha know?

(my apologies for this late posting for the GDRT…it’s a long story) :-)

1) Our Land

In the “gentler” Mediterranean climates of the world, the dry golden hills let all hang out, even Mt Diablo (such a gentle name…Mount Devil!), but gentle folds where water concentrates in the winter wet season, helping nourish live oaks. I.E. “the Golden State”…chipping at those SF Bloggers Fling pics, 1 by 1!

Continue reading “Garden Designers Roundtable – Enclosure vs. Exposure”