Plant of the Month – May

Mojave Aster Xylorhiza tortifolia  Plant Form: Perennial sub-shrub Water Use: Very low Mature Size: 1-2 ft. tall and wide Exposure: Full sun Bloom Time: Spring (March-May), Fall (October) Native to: California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah Hardiness: Cold hardy to 10°F   Mojave Aster adds unexpected color to the normally harsh habitat where it grows naturally. In your garden, the long-stalked flower heads on this perennial sub-shrub hold two-inch-wide, yellow-centered, lavender-petalled flowers that are beautifully iridescent. After plants are established with regular […]

Plant of the Month – February

Linear-leaved Goldenbush Narrowleaf Goldenbush Showy Goldenbush Ericameria linearifolia   Plant Form: Evergreen shrub Water Use: Very low Mature Size: 2-3 ft. tall x 3-4 ft. wide Exposure: Full sun Bloom Time: Spring (March-May) Native to: California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah Hardiness: Cold hardy to 10°F Linear-leaved Goldenbush is a moderately fast-growing, erect shrub that is highly branched. One of its common names, Showy Goldenbush, was inspired by its prolific spring display of bright yellow, daisy-like flowers on long stems above dark […]

Plant of the Month – November

Great Basin Sage Big Sagebrush Artemisia tridentata Plant Form: Evergreen shrub Water Use: Low Mature Size: 3-6 ft. tall x 3-10 ft. wide Exposure: Full sun Bloom Time: Summer (July-Aug), Fall (Sept) Native to: Western North America, Canada, Baja California Hardiness: Cold hardy to -20°F Great Basin Sage is a study in silver and gray. This shrub forms the primary vegetation across vast stretches of the Great Basin desert. A member of the sunflower family, it develops a woody trunk […]

Plant of the Month – August

Golden Dogbane Thymophylla pentachaeta Plant Form: Perennial Water Use: Low Mature Size: 6-10 in. tall x 1-2 ft. wide Exposure: Full Sun Bloom Time: Spring (March-May), Summer (June-Aug), Fall (Sept-Nov) Native to: California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Northern Mexico Hardiness: Cold hardy to 0°F  Golden Dogbane is a dainty, colorful plant that brings happiness to both gardeners and butterflies. Because it provides both nectar and food for butterflies and their larvae, it is perfect for butterfly gardens. Gardeners can plant just a few […]

Harvesting Native Gardens

~ Bladderpod ~ Spring entices a burst of bright yellow flowers on our native Bladderpod, attracting hummingbirds, hawk moths, gardeners, and ethnobotanists. Besides being an attractive, fire-resistant, evergreen shrub, Bladderpod produces showy clusters of flowers and inflated seed pods that can be eaten if cooked. We’ll share with you how to prepare these treats below. ♦♦♦ Part of my appreciation of our native desert plants comes from the indispensable gifts that these plants have provided for millennia to humans, wildlife, birds, insects, soils, and […]

Plant of the Month – November

Mountain Mahogany Cercocarpus betuloides Plant Form: Evergreen Shrub Water Use: Very Low Mature Size: 8-15 ft. tall x 10-12 ft. wide Exposure: Full Sun, Part Sun Bloom Time: Spring (Mar-May) Native to: California, Oregon, Baja California (below 6,000 feet) Hardiness: Cold hardy to -30°F  Mountain Mahogany is a large, upright, evergreen shrub or small tree with beautiful, smooth, light gray bark. Small, wedge-shaped leaves with toothed edges resemble birch leaves, giving this plant its other name, Birch-leaf Mountain Mahogany. Its small, cream-colored, rose-like […]