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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Water Trough, Walls, and Wildflowers

My first evening was a scorcher, but the serene Capri courtyard by Ten Eyck’s office was perfect to stroll after a drink inside.

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Christy says this was a nod to Donald Judd, but this also reminds me of a famous Luis Barragán garden with a horse by a water trough, only less spare.

I can’t help but see what many rehash out of catalogs was not rehashed here.

Instead, native and adapted plants, but natives emphasized including those some wrongly disdain. And bold or rugged with softer flowers, and axial lines instead of curves where not needed.

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“Serenity now!” – Seinfeld

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I would have just liked the budget for a gabion wall of this one’s scale.

If only they served breakfast and great coffee here, I’d arrive at 6:30 am. Though not sure I want to live in Marfa to do that.

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Massive yet delicate. Yet another reason to move towards buying my own abode once again, for a garden to zone out in.

Focal Points

Focal point is a design principle I learned as a college sophomore, but lost in designs while fielding an array of requests and deadlines.

Landscaping is much about focal points.

Pick a great place to be or just sit, then plan what you’ll look at.

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I spaced the Dasylirion wheeleri into Picacho Mountain just so they would do what the three with flower stalks are doing – interrupting the sky. Focal points even work when driving.

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Nolina greenei, Sophora x ‘Sierra Silver’, and Larrea tridentata

That was another view of the same development entry, with more evergreens playing off the Dasylirion on the left. But mostly a non-focal point of clumped desert plants, except the ocotillos.

Passing the entry island and leaving Picacho Mountain, another focal point you miss while entering the same development. It faces you only while exiting.

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Yucca faxoniana and a mass of Nolina greenei

Inside the development, one has to look at an island in each cul-de-sac, with no irrigation and native plants.

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Fouquieria splendens, gray Leucophyllum zygophyllum ‘Cimarron’, and Ungnadia speciosa

Another cul-de-sac.

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another Fouquieria splendens for height, Leucophyllum zygophyllum ‘Cimarron’ for fill, and Ferocactus wislizenii for pop

Do ever step back from your overall design, only to add in focal points and then work off of those?

6/12/17 weather: 96 / 65 / 0