White, Blue, Green

There’s solace in certain places, and a large part of that is the meeting of function and form. Some of that involves certain colors.

I’m about to channel Tara Dillard right now!


Many buildings in Marfa are white or off-white, skies are often blue, and there is a healthy embrace of native plants including green Desert Candle and Torrey Yucca. Either may be spiky to anyone and even unfriendly to the uninitiated, but they are green for little green in water or money.

I think that white, blue, and green are Marfa’s color trinity.

This Piñon tree is easy on the eyes with the building and sky.



The off-white, utilitarian building is stunning by not just the art installation inside it. The blue sky and it’s reflection on the glass panes is part, and the green, post-monsoon season look of the wild Blue Grama grasses provides the finish.


A designer I really respect insists that plants are icing on the cake.

I beg to differ, and modify that some: flowers are icing on the cake. Make sure there is massing of foliage, show off the sky, and make a simple backdrop.


Marfa Roadtrip!

A 3 day vacation of relaxing, good design and food, and plenty of horticultural interest in our hottest time of the year.


My stress lifts after El Paso at the 80 mph sign (God Bless Texas!), then it all dissolves on US-90.

Cathedral Mountain looms 40 miles distant, inspiring Big Bend Brewing Co’s logo.

After a Judd Foundation tour of Donald Judd’s studio spaces, it was time to shoot towards the sun and capture the hot, clear light of the high parts of the Chihuahuan Desert.

Rows of Dasylirion leiophyllum point towards a work of southwestern architecture, plus skyline accents of Yucca torreyi L and Fouquieria splendens R.


Green, white, and plant sculpture do it every time.

So does my gracious Airbnb host get it right with this, 100F and a strong west wind outside:


Cool air conditioning blasting inside her adobe casita.


Cold Shiner Bock after bottles of cold water? Yes!


Stay tuned, including the bench some of you might remember. Plus her new garden and plantings where I’m staying.

Time to start the evening in style.

Marfa White

In clothing or walls, white tends to be safe and clean for a background; black tends to slim and provide mystery.

I’m unsure what inspired all the white and pale grays on so many renovated buildings in Marfa. But it’s a relief from tan to brown stucco on most everything, or Santa Barbara or Tuscany meets Miami Vice.

maybe it’s the look of miles of Yucca elata blooms
or just being clean and fresh
even inside their apartment my few nights
the cumulus clouds do the same…white billows
pale and creamy white…and blue, blue-green
facing the back of my project
always the clouds, sky and Yucca rostrata blooms