Saturday, July 26, 2008

Stop Fighting Mother Nature-Go Native

When I was landscaping my house I had a lot of choices for drought tolerant plants. Everything was on a drip watering system and they all made it through the dry months and flourished in the rainy months.

When it came to growing things at my property it was a totally different story. I bought a few plants in pots from my house. I told myself I would plant them when I found a good spot. I am never going to find a good spot. There isn't any constant watering source except for me and my watering can and there is no protection from the creatures. I finally decided I was going to have to embrace the native vegetation.

So, first I looked at what was already growning...Palo Verde, Acacia, and Ocotillo (if you call that a tree) for the trees, Creosote and Fairy Duster for the shrubs. Yes, there are also lots of Cholla cactus and Prickly pear cactus but I don't think it needs any encouragement from me.

Then I looked up what else grew around here. I am missing Mesquite, Ironwood, Desert Willow, and Arizona Ash among other things. I could buy those trees but really, do you expect me to spend money on that kind of thing? I'm looking for free seeds! The Mesquite trees have seed pods right now. I collected some from the parking lot at my local store and also asked for some baby trees from my boss. He usually just pulls them up as weeds. Also, on my daily walk I found an Ironwood tree with pods. I planted some out in the desert and some in pots.

I would still love some Desert Willow trees. I think their flowers are so pretty. I've seen some in the Safeway parking lot. I just need to wait for the seeds to ripen. I planted one in my backyard at my house. I wonder how it is doing.

Hopefully I can still feel like a successful landscaper if I just pick the right plants to grow.

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