Plant of the Month

Jojoba, Goatnut Simmondsia chinensis Plant Form: Evergreen shrub Water Use: Extremely Low Mature Size: 6-8 ft. tall x 8-10 ft. wide Exposure: Full Sun Bloom Time: Winter (Feb), Spring (Mar-May), Summer (June) Native to: California, Arizona, Mexico (between 0 – 4,900 feet) Hardiness: Cold hardy to 15°F Jojoba is a long-lived, slow-growing dense evergreen shrub that is one of our most drought-tolerant, heat-tolerant native plants. Thick, leathery leaves grow upward so that only their edges face the sun during the hottest part of the […]

Join Robin’s Next Class

Beautiful, drought-tolerant southwest desert plants can add richness and enjoyment to your garden, supplement your edible garden offerings, and enhance the  lives of your neighborhood songbirds and wildlife. Learn how to plant, irrigate, and care for your native plant garden, with inspiring classroom instruction inside, then move outside into a “nearly native” demonstration garden, with over a hundred examples of mature desert native plants.  Our classes and workshops show you easy, fun, and healthy ways to incorporate our native plants […]

Plant of the Month – May

Basketbush Sumac, Fragrant Sumac Rhus aromatica   Plant Form: Deciduous Shrub Water Use: Low Mature Size: 5-6 ft. tall x 6-8 ft. wide Exposure: Full Sun, Part Shade Bloom Time: Spring (Mar-May) Native to: California, western U.S., Canada to Mexico (below 7,500 feet) Hardiness: Cold hardy to -15°F Basketbush Sumac is a surprisingly lush plant to be found in dry desert habitats. It is a tidy shrub with arching stems and dense leaves, spreading by rhizomes to form a thicket. […]

Plant of the Month-April

Foothill Penstemon, Bunchleaf Penstemon Penstemon heterophyllus   Plant Form: Evergreen herbaceous perennial Water Use: Low Mature Size: 1-3 ft. tall x 1-2 ft. wide Exposure: Full Sun, Part Sun Bloom Time: Spring (Apr-May), Summer (June-July) Native to: California (below 5,500 feet) Hardiness: Cold hardy to 10°F Foothill Penstemon makes you smile just to look at it. Every one of its abundant blossoms appears to be stretching up to greet you personally. From its yellow flower buds, you would never guess the […]

Plant of the Month – Jan. 2018

Coffeeberry Frangula californica   Plant Form: Evergreen Shrub Water Use: Low Mature Size: 5-12 ft. tall and wide Exposure: Full Sun, Part Sun Bloom Time: Spring – Summer (May-July) Native to: California, southwest Oregon, Nevada, Arizona, northern Baja (below 7000 feet) Hardiness: Cold hardy to 10°F Coffeeberry is touted as looking “trimmed without trimming”, although this tidy evergreen does take pruning well. This long-lived California native, also known as California Buckthorn, grows naturally in a wide range of habitats, with many available varieties, so […]

Alter-Natives for Desert Gardeners

“Great Native Alternatives to Traditional Yard Plants” A Presentation by Robin Kobaly | Botanist, Executive Director of The SummerTree Institute for Master Gardeners – UC Cooperative Extension, as part of  their 18-week Master Gardener Course   Wednesday, January 24th | 9-11 am  UCR Palm Desert | 75080 Frank Sinatra Drive, Palm Desert, CA   Wednesday, January 24, 2018 Presentation 9-11 am UCR Palm Desert | 75080 Frank Sinatra Drive, Palm Desert, CA 92211 Not open to the Public ~ however, you may sign up for a future Master […]