2 years ago we bought a house in Alamogordo, NM. Or backyard has a lot
of lawn and requires a lot of watering.
Since we want to conserve water we are planing some kind of desert garden.
So we are looking for somebody who can help us with planing. I assume,
that we have to start to recondition the soil but we don't know how.
We also need some advice which plants or shrubs we can use so that we
have a nice garden through out the year.
Thanks for any tip or address
I used to live in El Paso, TX and though my house had a lawn, desert
landscaping was very popular and many houses had a variety of cacti,
yuccas, and ocotillos surrounded by the red rock gravel common to
the area (almost every house also had walls made from the same rock).
As a kid I was fascinated by the local flora and managed to collect
almost every cactus from the region and had the most awesome garden
in my backyard as well as around my mailbox. Other plants native to
the El Paso (Chihuahuan) desert include something called a "bird of
paradise" (but not to be confused with a tropical plant of the same
name); also, there were desert willows with pretty fragrant flowers
as well as palo verde trees which have green photosynthetic bark and
yellow flowers. Ocotillos are also common, very bizarre-looking
things with maybe 5-10 tall vertical branches with very tiny waxy
leaves and bark and thorns. Yuccas abound, similar to Joshua Trees
except they have only one head. Also several species of agave which
have nasty points that can actually penetrate soles of shoes. And
I'm not sure if century plants are native to the region, but they do
grow very well there.
You can have a very attractive yard using just the local Chihuahuan
desert plants, there really is a very good variety including the
ones I mentioned above plus all sorts of cacti. A popular ground
cover was the non-native "ice plant," a succulent with small fleshy
leaves and pretty flowers that is hardy, grows fast, covers the
ground attractively and does not require much water. But make sure
non-native species can survive in the local conditions, please do
not even try to incorporate a Sonoran (Arizona) desert cactus like
saguaro into your landscape, or if you do it must be in a pot and
brought inside for the winter or it will die a miserable death as
each successive winter freeze damages it.
The "Bird of Paradise" you are referring to is native to Antigua and the
botanical name is Caesalpinia pulcherrima. I have two varieties. The more
common red to orange, and a yellow. They are breathtaking. I believe I have
seeds for the former if anyone is interested.
On Sun, 22 May 2005 05:26:49 GMT, "refs unpersons rewrite fullwise"
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