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Colwell Shelor Landscape Architects Create Thriving Gardens in an Arid Region of Phoenix

Nestled in Phoenix, Colwell Shelor Landscape Architects honors the surrounding context and forges seamless indoor-outdoor living experiences.
Colwell Shelor Landscape Architects Create Thriving Gardens in an Arid Region

Nestled in the vibrant, family-centric Arcadia district of Phoenix, Colwell Shelor Landscape Architects honors the surrounding neighborhood proportions, and forges a seamless indoor-outdoor living experience.

Through close collaboration with the architect and homeowner, Colwell Shelor Landscape Architects develops the character of the site, including hardscape, planting, walls, and outdoor amenities.

Colwell Shelor Landscape Architects Create Thriving Gardens in an Arid Region
Landscape Architecture by Colwell Shelor // Architecture by A-I-R // Photography by Bill Timmerman.

With an understanding of the organic and inert material morphology of native vegetation and desert environments, Colwell Shelor Landscape Architects creates a simple, yet dynamic lush gardens.

In an area known for its arid landscape, the landscape architects achieved a abundant, green landscape sustainably fed by the city’s unique flood irrigation system, built expressively to irrigate the locality’s orange and date groves.

Encircling the home, terraced planter beds crafted from corten steel supplant extensive grassy expanses, introducing region-suited vegetation.
Landscape Architecture by Colwell Shelor // Architecture by A-I-R // Photography by Bill Timmerman.

Encircling the home, terraced planter beds crafted from corten steel supplant extensive grassy expanses, introducing region-suited vegetation.

Beneath the multi-stemmed trees providing height to a low-profile architecture, a rich underplanting of yucca, euphorbia, and pedilanthus integrates with Chihuahuan orchid trees.

Defined by a smooth light-colored flooring that contrasts with a rich green vertical garden, wooden armchairs invite relaxation and conversation, positioned to face the warmth of the elongated, minimalist fireplace embedded in a clean, white wall.
Landscape Architecture by Colwell Shelor // Architecture by A-I-R // Photography by Bill Timmerman.

Defined by a smooth light-colored flooring that contrasts with a rich green vertical garden, wooden armchairs invite relaxation and conversation, positioned to face the warmth of the elongated, minimalist fireplace embedded in a clean, white wall.

Overhead, the architectural overhang provides shelter, and its recessed lighting adds a soft glow that complements the fire’s natural light. The design emphasizes clean lines, open space, and a connection with nature, showcasing a blend of functionality and serene aesthetics.

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Adjacent to the principal living zones, a series of sophisticated external spaces were created to blur the boundaries between indoor and outdoor spaces.
Landscape Architecture by Colwell Shelor // Architecture by A-I-R // Photography by Bill Timmerman.

Adjacent to the principal living zones, a series of sophisticated external spaces were created to blur the boundaries between indoor and outdoor spaces.

A central courtyard with a hearth and al fresco dining/barbecue spot creates a secluded familial spot to lounge with Creeping fig vines adorning the property’s facades, integrating the building with its lush surroundings.

With the existing in-ground swimming pool untouched, Colwell Shelor reimagined the existing pool area by introducing white seating ledges to blend the pool with the contemporary dwelling.
Landscape Architecture by Colwell Shelor // Architecture by A-I-R // Photography by Bill Timmerman.

With the existing in-ground swimming pool untouched, Colwell Shelor Landscape Architects reimagined the existing pool area by introducing white seating ledges to blend the pool with the contemporary dwelling.

To create a sustainable landscape, the site’s original pavers were repurposed for the driveway, enhancing groundwater infiltration.

Colwell Shelor Landscape Architects Create Thriving Gardens in an Arid Region
Landscape Architecture by Colwell Shelor // Architecture by A-I-R // Photography by Bill Timmerman.

Based in Phoenix, Arizona, Colwell Shelor is a landscape architecture and urban design studio, established in 2009 by Allison Colwell and Michele Shelor.

The firm prides itself on crafting impactful, dynamic spaces that resonate with the unique cultural and ecological aspects of their locations.

Their portfolio is diverse, encompassing a variety of projects from large-scale public venues like academic plazas and civic centers to more private, tranquil retreats.

In every project, Colwell Shelor Landscape Architects strive to merge functionality with a desire to foster a better connection between individuals and their environment.

Their core mission is to transcend traditional sustainability, aiming to construct thriving, poetic communities that elevate quality of life and offer environmental advantages for everyone.

Landscape Architecture by: Colwell Shelor Landscape Architects

Architecture by: A-I-R

Photography by: Bill Timmerman

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