Veterans Day Poppies ~ Plant Now for Memorial Day

In the Southwest, Veterans Day is a good time to plant poppy seed for spring poppies.  Why mention this at all? Paper poppies were once sold to raise funds for veterans and their families left destitute by their service.  Why Poppies? A little history here. For some of you it might be ancient history, but for some of us it’s not.  We heard our grandfathers stories of the fighting on in the Great War (later called WW I). You may have also heard fathers and uncles discussing the differences between […]

Winter Color With Annuals

Want some spring color? Wildflower seed should be planted now. BUT!  But what about some garden color between now and then?! Good news – there are MANY options for a colorful garden for the winter months! Cool Season Color Color in the Southwest winter is provided by blooms from the forests and fields of the northern regions of the world. Winter is time to protect our tropical plants such as colorful canna and heat loving hibiscus. Time to start planting pretty pansies and splendid sweet peas. How lucky we are […]

Plant Bulbs in Autumn for Spring Color

Hiding underground for most of their life, many bulbs spring forth in Spring with shining flowers to brighten our gardens and days. I know the trailing heat of summer (especially this summer) does not seem like the best time to think of spring color but it is! (Science Nerd Note: In this article I am using the term “bulbs” to also include corms, tubers, and rhizomes.) Plan Now Like the title says, now is the time to order bulbs for planting now and into October. (Spring wildflowers too, but that […]

Happy, Healthy Hibiscus

Hibiscus is a lovely shrub, and now that it’s summer – it’s one commonly found in nurseries and big box garden centers. And no wonder! Hibiscus are beautiful plants with a bushy, luxurious looking form, glossy green leaves, and bringing the feel of the tropics to your yard. Then there are the flowers! Hibiscus Flowers Are Awesome The large size of the blooms, combined with their exotic appearance and downright durability as a flower has helped them find their way into our cultural world view. Who hasn’t see photos of […]

Colorful Cannas Part II

Last week I told you that You Can Grow Colorful Cannas.  Just because you can grow them – should you grow them?  Sure – why not! If you enjoy bright, colorful, lush plants in your landscape, and especially if you have a water garden – you should grow canna. (#PlantWhatYouEnjoy) But is that isn’t enough – here are some more reasons to grow canna. Cannas Add A Touch of the Tropics The broad flat leaves of canna are typically solid green but some cultivars have maroon, bronzy, or even enchantingly […]

You Can Grow Colorful Cannas

Cannas are – circle all that apply – colorful, tropical, large-flowered, bold, brash, bright, sometimes gaudy, glorious, short or tall, a glorious garden plant. I hope you circled them all, because cannas are all the above!  Plus very delightful and very variable. Cannas in the Southwest If you have an entirely desert landscape, cannas won’t look right in your landscape. But – if you are like most of us in the Southwest – you have an oasis zone in your low-water landscape (we used to call ’em xeriscapes), thus cannas […]