Borrowed View: To My East

Each day after working around those I must work around, this is what I see once I change into summer clothes and open the blinds.

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Sure, the foreground of my rental property lacks. Though the spare look of retained native plants in brown gravel mulch helps – Soaptree clumps and a few Fourwing Saltbush.

The neighbor’s horse fence trellis nicely compliments the space, adding an additional edge to their house, irregular desert plants, and low wall.

More closely, a nicely-framed Sotol is in the shadow of a Desert Willow.

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A borrowed view is a powerful design tool, when it’s good.

Even when you borrow it with what you choose to frame, but certainly more when you design frames into such a view.

Just a tempering of our near-record heat to something less obscene, and more flowers are appearing on that Chilopsis linearis.

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Though none of this is mine, it’s certainly a nice welcome back to my real life when I get home each day. Or just each day that I’m home.

It is my own view of serenity.

7/8/17 weather: 96 / 65 / 0.00

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What Makes It Work?

Note the whitish layer in the soil (called caliche), overlain with gravels (called desert pavement), and the widely-spaced olive-green creosote bushes on top. As the wind blows the clouds about, which of course don’t rain.

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this, catching my breath on a Sunday mountain bike ride

No coincidence or randomness in that.

Geology, biology, and meteorology conspire to grow things where there is no drip irrigation, nobody wearing black and glasses, or a municipal client with an open pocketbook – for those who stay in line.

During a conversation about our pasts, a landscape architect years ago asked me how my original college major of meteorology even related to my final degree in landscape architecture and becoming an LA.

Yes – I’m also confused!

Potential replies to that and a few times since have gone off in my head, “how does graphic design relate to the 4-D canvas of land and horticulture?”, “how does overplanting by 3 times help your client?”, or “how does it work using plants observably hardy only in the life zone warmer than you up in the mountains, only to copy Des Moines down in the desert?” All common themes in that group.

She asked in all sincerity, not out of shooting me down. Instead of getting uppity with her, I mentioned some things about working with one’s native vegetation and climate goes further when one gets their interrelatedness.

Of course, it all relates. Even other design fields, graphics to fashion.

But most certainly soils, life forms, and weather – caliche, creosote, and climate.