Beautiful Brittlebush

Brittlebush is not only beautiful to behold – it is beautiful for many aspects of any Sonoran and Mojave desert habitat.    Brittlebush provides food for foraging pollinators, a shady spot to start saguaro life, a sheltered spot for wildlife to rest, and a safe corner of the world to build a little lizard den under. Brilliant Brittlebush Brittlebush (Encelia farinosa)  is one of the most common and conspicuous wildflower […]

Native Zinnia for Native Pollinators

Want the native butterflies and other pollinators to visit your yard?  Think Z for native Zinnia! Native Plants for Native Pollinators People are concerned about the recent decline in native pollinators.   This has highlighted the need to grow more native plants in our yards.    Great idea!    But most gardeners want colorful plants in their yards.    Never fear – native zinnia are here! Landscape with Native Zinnias First […]

Hummingbirds Love Spring

Spring flowers are beginning to bloom and hummingbirds are zipping around, collecting nectar and a few insects while they are at it. Entice the Hummingbirds Hummingbirds need more than just sugar-water feeders. Like most animal life, they need a balanced diet of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. This means that they do need some flower nectar. More than Just Food Every living thing on earth needs food, water, and a place […]

Gardening for the Birds

Cover image – Male phainopepla, a silky flycatcher native to the Southwest deserts and mountains. February is National Bird Feeding Month. The birds are really hoping you will celebrate. But Don’t Just Feed the Birds – While it is nice to add feeders to your garden, it seems like cheating somehow. Plus you may attract the non-native birds that crowd out our desert adapted species. So, instead of actively feeding […]

Desert Trees for Fast Shade – and Pollinators

“Fall is such a great time to plant new trees, and there are so many wonderful native and near-native choices to add pollinator and wildlife benefits to your yard!” She got me with that wonderful opening sentence so I asked her if I could use some more of her words. Yes! So today we have a guest post from longtime friend and plants woman extraordinaire, Carianne Sienna Funicelli, or should […]

Spring Wildflowers in 5 Easy Steps

Wildflowers in the Southwest spring. Who doesn’t want some?!Great news is that there are 5 simple steps to have them in your yard this spring. But first some background. Why Plant Wildflowers Now? Yes plant them Autumn!  Spring wildflowers bloom in the Sonoran and Mojave Deserts in response to the winter rains off the Pacific Ocean. Thus you have to get the wildflower seed into the soil now, because their […]

Perennials are Perfect for Pollinators

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. This massive diversity makes sense – because much of the region has plants that bloom in every month of the year. Pollinators in the Southwest We have a plethora of pretty pollinators here!  We are the […]