West Texas Landscaping

The ice plant is popular in West Texas landscaping. All photos: Texas Tech Horticultural Garden

The semi-arid climate in Midland and Odessa mean the sun burns bright and water is scarce. So how’s a homeowner to keep their West Texas landscaping from looking like a dry wasteland?

By making smart choices about the plants and trees they put there. Those that are well acclimated to places like Ector and Midland counties can thrive, even in difficult conditions.

Here’s a roundup of perennials, groundcovers, shrubs, shade trees, ornamental grasses, and ornamental trees that will look beautiful year-round.


Who needs Palm Springs? Besides, it’s almost as hot here, right about now. This nee 1963 mid-century modern sweetheart is sleek, snazzy and will actually save on your water bills and landscape frustration. (This coming from someone with crispy critter plants!) Built into an Oak Cliff hillside at the end of a quiet cul-de-sac, the home is designed with drought tolerant landscaping so you can thumb your nose at the water bill and stop doing novenas for rain. Architectural design by David Braden, you get vaulted ceilings, exposed beams, brick fireplace, clerestory windows, walls of glass & all the original built-ins with wood panels. A covered dining terrace just off the main living areas is surrounded by a custom horizontal cedar slat fence. Four bedrooms, two updated baths, and just over 2000 square feet of home. I’ll be honest: I’m not fond of the laminate in the kitchen, probably because it is just what my mother had in the ’60’s. TMI, TMI. But I LOVE the bathrooms with preserved original tiles. Let me tell you, tile back then was mudded in and lasts. This house also has so much built-in storage, that’s the secret to keeping it so neat and tidy! 2816 Ilahe is listed by mid-century modern specialist Ed Murchison with Virginia Cook Realtors. And not kidding: the asking price is REALLY $209,000.

Love this bath update!