Modern Phoenix Neighborhood Network

Xerophytic Design Objectives

by Thomas Park, President of Xerophytic Design, Inc.


My goal at Xerophytic Design, Inc. is to create unique landscapes that tie interior and exterior spaces together, while emphasizing the local color of the community or historic home. I believe that everyone deserves a well-designed environment, and I work with each client to create what works best for their site, budget, and personal style.

Additionally I have two other objectives. The first is to be desert-friendly. In North Scottsdale I try to teach clients to respect NAOS and HOA guidelines, while striving for a more personalized statement in private places on the property. I will not use any plant that I consider to be an invasive weed in any design.

I salvage and reuse existing plant material, uncovered building materials, salvaged yard materials, and anything else recycled from on-site that enhances a project's style. I rarely design grass into a project. In the few cases I have used grass, the client needed to justify its use. ("Rex has to have grass to poo!", is not acceptable! Most dogs will figure out how to poop on just about anything provided.) I encourage the correct usage of irrigation clocks to reduce water use. I choose deciduous shade trees for their seasonal heating and cooling effect, and have developed an adaptable gardening style that uses as much drought tolerant material as possible without leaving a home looking barren.  
The second objective is to make every effort to be as eco-friendly as possible. I recycle or reuse all packaging materials. I buy local products when available. I use eco-friendly construction materials (like a.k.a. green in Scottsdale). I am working on a battery recycling program as well as a car pool incentive program for employees. My plant nursery is entirely succulents, specializing in Gasterias, Haworthias, Aloes, Agaves, Cacti, and other xerophytes from around the world. Two big advantages to growing my own succulents are that they are Arizona Grown, therefore adapted to local conditions -- unlike Californian specimens so commonly found in big-box chain markets. My plants are "greener" since there aren't any additional shipping costs associated in their production. The most enjoyable part of xeriphytic landscape work is creating a design. When I design a new garden, I actually sit down and look at the space, sometimes with the client, sometimes without. I reflect on what views need to be preserved, how to create privacy, what the flow is through the space, what architectural elements can be picked up in the landscape layout, etc... I know it sounds crazy, but many spaces really just design themselves if you know how to look and listen.

 

 

All garden designs and photos are copyrighted by Thomas Park of Xerophytic Design, Inc. unless otherwise indicated