ISSUE 32  |  South of the Border

A Garden That Thrives on Adversity

August 09, 2012 5:00 PM

BY Michelle Slatalla

On a broad plateau in West Texas, the challenge was to create a windbreak and to shade an exposed ranch house sited on a slope.

The solution, from Austin-based Ten Eyck Landscape Architects, involved retaining walls, native plantings, and even a mini-orchard:

Photographs via Ten Eyck Landscape Architects.

Above: After noticing that existing pecan trees were thriving, the landscape architects created an orchard of six more near the house to create shade.

Above: Beneath the pecan trees, a dining table amid clumps of native grasses.

Above: A rustic fire pit.

Above: In the garden, the pool’s perimeter is defined by masonry retaining walls .

Above: Expansive southern views, from the pool.

Above: Native plants withstand the harsh West Texas climate.

Above: Alongside old ranch roads, native grasses create a visual counterpoint to the vast horizon.

Above: Mesquites line the entry path.

Above: Cast concrete, stone, and drought-tolerant plantings accentuate the beauty of the severe climate, rather than trying to fight it.

(N.B.: For more inspiration, see 225 more images of Texas Gardens in our Gallery of rooms and spaces.)