Spring Light

Following a recent pre-construction meeting one morning away from the day job, using more vacation time to do so, I was glad to visit El Paso’s new Transmountain Hospital. You might remember I was the LA on its HKS-led project team.

The light was perfect, and the spaces I designed are settling in.

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Masses of similar plants contrasting other masses would never satisfy some, but it satisfies the need for ease of maintenance, and rhythm driving or walking.

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Available plants in quantities meant natives like Prosopis glandulosa, Muhlenbergia emersleyi, Chrysactinia mexicana, and Agave parryi. And adapted plants like Salvia clevelandii and Zephyranthes candida.

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The bright green of newly-leafed out Prosopis really is stunning against shadowy buildings and mountains, or bright blue skies.

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On to the break area, designed especially for nighttime sitting.

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Soon, the Salvia and Zephyranthes candida will be in bloom for the front doors area.

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The physicians parking area is stunning, and sweetly scented with near-native Acacia farnesiana. (take that old genus name, taxonomists!)

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Ahhh, the bold mountain islands on the east side of the Rio Grande Rift…

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If you’re entering from the west, off Resler, this is part of the greeting.

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Masses of the common Dasylirion wheeleri…just know when this planting is a few more years old, it will look almost too dense in spots but be spare and interesting in most of it.

The unknowing person would never imagine any of that.

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Time to head back home and to the now-day job.

Do you ever look at large-scale landscapes the public uses? Do you know the severe time and budget constraints on those? Or the array of other challenges on each one?

Time for bed, computer software diagnostics for hours over months are enough challenge.

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Color Spots

Tired of cool-colored Leucophyllum?

Well, I almost am, but cool colors are welcome here. By the end of our hot, week-long monsoon season break, most of the flowers went away.

But before the drying, do you see the flowering?

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Small trees were used lower, near the entry into the first phase of the development. Here it was Rhus lanceolata, to add interest to the pedestrian use of yuccas.

Here’s your color at the intersection.

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Masses of color work, but so does the special feeling of an unexpected spot of color.

Looking south from the rear view mirror angle and the front windshield view. It’s subtle, but subtle often makes more of an impact, especially with the juxtaposition of my design using boulders and plant forms.

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Sparse or spiky, then color, then more sparse and spiky. The gravel groundplane dominating with Dasylirion wheeleri and Aristida purpurea, then Leucophyllum zygophyllum and Yucca faxoniana dominate the gravel ground plane.

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8/11/17 weather: 98 / 73 / 0.75