Thursday, February 28, 2013

Misc. Mile High

Some interesting things I saw around this past winter, on a higher level.
Low angle, late afternoon light in the Mile High City - downtown. Coming from a large
town in a much-different desert southwest place, such taller buildings are a form
of stand-out sculpture to me.

The person I was with, used to New York City, enjoyed Denver's low-slung skyline!

Absent from everyday lives, bison (AKA buffalo) are back in the popular culture (and even cuisine) in parts of the great plains, including Denver on the western end. Here, in the form of small sculpture, with the colors of the land and skies.

Full scale would be much larger in size - either out of scale here, or even a wind-projectile in severe storm season.

Dawn breaks the day of my speaking engagement, from my downtown Denver hotel room, looking towards the plains.

The plant sculptures from the central high plains are impressive when placed well.
As they are at the Denver Botanic Gardens, that fine day Panayoti gave us a tour
in mid-January 2013.

The container chosen to compliment the winter purples of the cactus, in front
of a green New Mexico Yucca / Yucca neomexicana, does the trick.

Once part of Kansas, this area later became Colorado, but the ecoregional locale is
still firmly on the great plains, at the base of the Rocky Mountains. Denver was
named after a Kansas Territorial governor; that state's flower, Helianthus 
annuus, is still found along roadsides and fallow fields just beyond the city.

Though my first reaction was that Abq friend Liza moved to Denver over the
holidays, and had some of her friends over. But I digress...

Back to that other Mile High City - Albuquerque - much warmer, arid and not semi-arid, since were 400 miles south and over 2 large mountain ranges and two more highland areas from Denver. Some still don't know that!

Actually, that scene is from northern suburb, Placitas, but close enough. I'm on a trail I haven't ridden in over a decade. We should be getting more warm breaks in the cold, but not this winter - though it did rain the day before, so the trail was firm.

That scenery never fails to amaze me, just like how it is never embraced in city landscapes.

My neighbor, Nate, is also enjoying the ride, before we returned via the La Cumbre Taproom. Of course...

Speaking of what should inspire landscapes in Abq - it would be great to see some of that simple contrast abstracted in gardens in or near the foothills - small courtyards to freeways. Tan, dormant Grama grass expanses / Bouteloua spp. = negative space. Green Oneseed Juniper / Juniperus monosperma in swales and Comanche Prickly Pear / Opuntia camanchica among grasses = positive space or mass. And the Sandia Mountain backdrop ain't bad, either.

Closer to home is the steel agave or yucca sculpture, set into the ruggedness. It's
the City of Albuquerque's marker for our East Gateway or El Pedregal area.

I must post on that sculpture lit up at night, very soon. 

About the only water is in my courtyard fountain, though sometimes in frozen form.

Does any of this recall treks you've taken in the past? 
Or give you ideas where you might want to visit? Tell me about it!


  1. So beautiful city.You took some wonderful pictures. Thank you for sharing such beautiful post.

    1. Thanks - both places both unique, or could be. Enjoyed your blog and theme...that's what would make my area, better use of more "architecturally beautiful plants".

  2. Bellos paisaje, y puedo imaginar los interesantes paseos, ya que me gusta el clima semidesertico.


    1. Me gustan los lugares secos, también! Muy interesante - encinos en los arroyos, el descanso es hierbas secas.

  3. That sculpture is very nice - it must be gorgeous at night, and lit. I hope you share those pictures soon also.

    1. Right where traffic sees it andcity lights come into view. A must-photograph for years...

  4. Must get some pics of the bike trail near my home. It goes to Stone Mountain & Jimmy Carter Library............

    XO T

    1. That would be great, as well of the cool cactus by the bridge or tracks you mentioned. Hopefully before I finally make it to visit GA!

  5. Really neat photos and observations!

    1. Thanks - I think we are both enjoying this warming - you like spring, me almost there!


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