Colorful Cannas – Part II

Last week I told you that You Can Grow Colorful Cannas.    Just because you can – should you?    Sure – why not!    If you enjoy bright, colorful, lush plants in your landscape, and especially if you have a water garden – you should grow some cannas.    But is that isn’t enough – here are some additional reasons to grow them. Cannas Add A Touch of the […]

You Can Grow Colorful Cannas – Part I

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 of 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 […]

June 2024 Garden Tasks

June in the Southwest is normally hard on plants and wildlife, and this year promises to be no different.   All plants, even succulents, are stressed by this normally dry month, and worse than usual with the erratic winds that can dry plants further. June is one of the longest chapters in my Month by Month Garden Guide.  This post is a much shortened version. Need More than This Short Post? The […]

Acacia – Part I

As I write this the native white thorn acacia (Vachellia constricta, formerly Acacia constricta) are blooming in my yard.  I love the fragrance.  So close to sweet peas!  Gentlemen may seek out sweet smelling roses with which to woo the fairer gender, but as a Southwester gardener, I far prefer the sweet smelling acacias around my garden.  Oh, wait, I forgot, they aren’t technically “acacia” anymore. Quick Look at Acacia […]

Desert Mistletoe – Part II

Last week, I started this series about desert mistletoe, to discuss what you might do about it in your trees. Not a Bad Thing Some people try to eradicate desert mistletoe, thinking it is harming the tree.    It be a poor parasite if it killed it’s host.    Yes, it does some harm, but it is a limited amount of harm.  Thus lives with the host trees for many […]

Desert Mistletoe – Part I

Here in the desert we have a unique species of mistletoe called the desert mistletoe, Phoradendron californicum.  It is in a family closely related to the fragrant sandalwood. There are many species of mistletoe around the world, parasitic and hemi-parisitic on a number of trees.    All mistletoe plants are toxic.    Almost all the berries are toxic.    The one exception is the Sonoran and Mojave desert mistletoe!   I wrote […]

May 2024 in the Garden

May Day is nigh! Time to get your garden and landscape ready for the summer ahead.  Sadly, for 2024, the long range weather forecasts say that it is going to be a hot dry one. May In General In the Desert Elevations – tasks in May revolve around making sure the water system is working. In all elevations, it’s time for fertilizer to encourage healthy growth for the tough summer […]

Be Aware – Bees are Swarming

Much in the news about bees as pollinators. And while we all enjoy the fruits of bees labor, not many of us want a swarm of them settling in the backyard.    Especially not the Africanized “killer” bees that are a fact of life in Texas, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and parts of California.    Read on to learn how to stay safe. Honey Bees are Non-native Bees Even if […]

15 Sunflowers for the Southwest – Land of the Sun

The simple sunflower is a native Southwest plant, used for centuries by the Native peoples.    If you plant the right varieties – and plant them in the spring – you will have a gorgeous garden full of bright sunflowers. Sunflower Origins Originally sunflowers grew only in North and Central America (the “New World”).    After  Europeans “discovered” sunflowers, they were rapidly shared around the globe. There are over 70 […]