You Can Grow A Colorful Garden in the Heat

Most of us enjoy color in our life, including colorful flowers in the landscape. Something cheerful to greet us as we look out the window with the morning cup of coffee, or something welcome us home from the daily grind. Gardeners and landscape folks (members of the Green Industry) call this “color.” Lucky for us, “color” in the Southwest is a year round thing, especially if we use some annuals. Color Choices There are over 10,000 trees, shrubs, and perennial plants that can grow in the Southwest, and they all […]

Perennials for Pollinators

The third week of June is National Pollinator Week. As it happens, the entire month of June is “National Perennial Garden Month.” So combining the two national celebrations, allow me to introduce you to some on the many lovely low-water Southwest native perennials for Southwest pollinators. Pollinators in the Southwest When it comes to pollinators, the American Southwest is one of the most species diverse habitats in the world, with native species of bees, butterflies, moths, bats, and hummingbirds all busy pollinating our plants. The diversity makes sense when you […]

Desert Mistletoe in Your Trees

There are many species of mistletoe around the world, parasitic and hemi-parasitic on a number of trees. All mistletoe plants are toxic. Almost all mistletoe berries are toxic. The one exception is the Sonoran and Mojave desert mistletoe, Phoradendron californicum, also called desert mistletoe. Interestingly, this unique genus is a distant relative of sandal wood. It’s a Hemi Technically, desert mistletoe is “hemi-parasitic.” No, it isn’t packing an awesome engine under the hood. We are talking about plants so it’s a Latin term. In Latin “hemi” means half. These mistletoes […]

Caring in the Land of El Sol

Caring. Looking back over the past week of posts there is one common thread through it all, and that is caring. A Common Thread As some of you know, I am taking part in a 30 day blogging challenge. My goal is to become at delivering to you, gentle reader, the content you want and need. Today’s assignment was to find the common element in my posts over the last seven days, and I would have to say it is “caring.” The Thread of Caring The posts have been about […]

Plant Your Yard for Pollinators and People

Is it possible to have a yard full of native plants for the pollinators – and an edible landscape for humans at the same time? You betcha! Try these awesome aloysia.  (And thanks for asking that question!) Native Plants for Multiple Uses There are indeed hundreds of native plants with culinary, medicinal, and other herb uses, including deterring mosquitoes. Many of these herbs are full of compounds that make them tasty to us but not at all tasty to wildlife like javelina and rabbits. And while the leaves repel wildlife, […]

Native Vines for the Land of El Sol

Last week I wrote that vines are easy to grow since they need very little root space to flourish. They work well for both large and small yards!  Here are some of you top choices. Where to Buy There are a vast number of native vines that grow well in the area. Most of the ones I mention here are easily available at local nurseries. Big box stores will not have them because they buy nationally, not locally. (List of local Southwest nurseries – here.) Breaking every blogger rule – […]