Design Through the Decades - Phoenix, Arizona - 1990s Landscaping

December 19th, 2008 · 2 Comments

Design Through the Decades - part 60

As mentioned in an earlier post on 1990s exterior architecture, new home construction was fast and furious in the 1990s, and home lots shrunk in size.  That meant there was not much room for landscaping for these Phoenix homes.

It is difficult to get excited about 1990s landscaping when there is only room for one tree and two bushes out front.  Homebuilders offered free landscaping packages for front yards.  Homeowners had the choice of either a mesquite tree, a ficus tree, or queen palms.  For bushes, they got pink oleander, natal plum, yellow lantana, and/or red yucca.  Maybe a patch of grass out front, but mostly it was gravel rock with the color choices of tan, tan, or tan.  Landscape design was minimalist in the 1990s.

The typical 1990s Phoenix home had a mesquite tree out front.  The purple flowering shrub is a Texas sage bush, which was popular in 1990s landscaping.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

Another Phoenix home with a mesquite tree.  There’s a red yucca (aka hesperaloe) to the left of the tree.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

Queen palms dominated landscaping designs in the 1990s.  Bougainvillea, oleander, and ruella bushes accent this 1996 Phoenix home.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

A 1990-built Scottsdale home with queen palms and a rosemary bush in the foreground.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

More queen palms and a hibiscus bush out back at this Scottsdale home.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

Ficus nitida trees were very common in the late 1990s.  This 1997 Phoenix home has a ficus tree to the left.  A blooming bougainvillea bush is on the right.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

Ficus trees in a back yard of a 1998 Phoenix home.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

Mexican fan palms could be used in 1990s landscaping as long as at least one queen palm was also used.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

1993 Phoenix home with Mexican fan palms in back.  Mesquite trees to the left.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

This 1999 Phoenix home decided to buck the trend and not have any trees out front, opting instead for blue agave and dwarf oleander.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

A rare Phoenix home with grass out front.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

This back yard with minimal landscaping was seen in the majority of 1990s Phoenix back yards.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

Homeowners sometimes planted winter rye grass to maintain green lawns year ’round as seen at this 1997 home.  The obligatory queen palm is present.
1990s landscaping Phoenix homes Design Through the Decades

Coming Up:  What will landscaping look like at Phoenix homes built in the 2000s?

Tags: Landscaping · Design Through the Decades · 1990s

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Greeney // Mar 16, 2013 at 11:15 pm

    These pages are so informative for me!

  • 2 We’ve got this. | phoenixgardendesign // Jun 10, 2015 at 12:07 am

    […] I think we can do better when it comes to garden and landscape design.  I’ve thought this for a while and maybe you have too.  To me, a lot of the Metro Phoenix is time warped in a particular type of 1990’s landscape design I have dubbed “The Barbara Bush Collection” with my wife.  It is sorta my rant.  Close your eyes with me and visualize pink and white oleander bushes, marigolds, purple petunias, dianthus, mexican birds of paradise, honeysuckle, and shit tons of vincas.  It was as if my parent’s generation was not satisfied unless every bush and plant was a shocking shade of Crayola color (I’m talking about you Texas Sage Brush).  Oh, I’m not done with my rant yet.  The trees in the Barbara Bush collection include Queen Palms, Jacarandas, Chinese Elms, and the worst offender of them all… the dreaded bottle tree.  I single out the bottle tree because of all the times I mowed over those damn seed pods and the superfine needles exploded sending superfine needles into my exposed toes because you know… flip flops.  I congratulate them on surviving the dreaded summers here but seriously, I want their reign of terror and ugliness to end. For more laughs, read this blog post here. &$@*! […]

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