Creating a landscape plan is a complicated endeavor. Luckily for home gardeners, landscape architects specialize in designing outdoor spaces. Today, we’re sharing a unique plan by New Mexico landscape designer David Cristiani to give you some inspiration and ideas for designing your own yard. We’ll be sharing three more landscape plans in future issues of 505Outside.

Green spaces and water conservation need not conflict, nor does an oasis require the use of high-water-use and high-maintenance turf grass at the exclusion of native plants and succulents. This typical front yard area contains mostly evergreen plantings and an inviting entry experience to welcome guest and owner alike, no matter the season. A low wall and climbing evergreen vines combine to provide additional screening and intimacy for sitting out on the front porch and also extend the architecture into the plantings. While designed for a smaller front area, the plantings can be increased in scale and number to fill a larger property.

The sculptural and leafy forms of an evergreen escarpment live oak grouping provide a canopy to the plantings below, which offer seasonal interest using native and adapted species. Native bear grass provides a soft yet bold texture, as do the spiky flower stalks of red hesperaloe, or red yucca. The loose forms of colorful desert globemallow provide masses of pink-toned flowers throughout much of the growing season. Germander and trailing rosemary generously fill in the ground surfaces with dark green color, fragrance and seasonal flowers. Durable materials prevail, while the plant spacing provides both screening from adjacent neighbors and ample room to access both sides of the home.

Learn more about specific types of gardening here:

Coolscape Landscape Template

Wildscape Landscape Template

Simple Steps to Get Started Designing Your Yard

Xeriscape Landscape Type