Southwestern garden escape
This Albuquerque backyard is a vacation in itself –– complete with road trips. See 5 things that make it work
Meandering paths, dry creek beds, and shared materials connect low-water planting areas, a shady patio, and grass-filled "traffic" circle.
Design: Amy J. Steidlmayer, Red Twig Studio, Albuquerque (505/265-0082)
The arbor-shaded patio with banco seating invites guests to the garden’s far reaches. The fireplace is faced with the same cultured stone as the circular planter, visually connecting the two areas.
A large round planter, filled with 'Hameln' fountain grass, encourages a circular traffic pattern. It’s built of cement blocks and faced with cultured stone.
Small wooden bridges span the path. In summer, the dry creekbed is a river of gold, thanks to the generous daisylike blooms of Perky Sue (Hymenoxys scaposa).
The desert rose color of the fine gravel makes the path stand out from the coarser gray gravel mulch around it, inviting you to follow its lazy course.