Saturday, October 20, 2012

Good morning world!

Woke up too a beautiful morning.  The clouds give a touch of art too the morning sky.  I love the endless blue skies of summer here, but a few clouds can give it interest.

The best gardens for me are the ones that invite wildlife in, even "pests".  Ok...maybe not all, but some I can live with.  These are found on my Datura sp.    
"Tomato Hornworm"," hummingbird spinx month caterpillar"
Manduca sexta

"not a pest!"
Pacific tree frog

Despite the freezing nights, some flower still blooming.

agastache sp.

liatris flower, just started to bloom.

Some new plants, some old.
My new cactus from
Ferocactus cylindraceus, will be planted outside next year and covered in the winter.

Unknown ferocactus I grew from seed.  Came from a desert seed pack sold in the southwest.
This is last one I have, all the other died with lows in the low 20's

Purple pricklypear cross.  Planting it outside next year.

Some cactus seed that sprouted from mulch that came with a desert plant I bought.
  Looks like purple pricklypear. Opuntia santa rita? 

And the best for last!  A new hybrid cross I got from my friend Tim.
Yucca arkansana "freemannii" x reverchonii-thompsonii
Will be covered this first year.

This was also from Tim.
Yucca gluaca-stricta, Maxwell NE

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Trimmed my bush, before and after pics!

Bitterbrush (Purshia tridentata)
I don't trim too many of the bushes except I like too keep the bitterbrush trimmed once a year to help them stay in shape and size.  Bitterbrush is on one the few desert shrubs that can handle being shaped. It would probably work well as a desert hedge.  It also will grow well next to lawns or with no direct irrigation at all. 
A nice sent and yellow flowers in the late spring.  Good for deer browse and other wildlife.    




All three after, hard too see.

And this is what I water everything with except the grass.

And some very bad shots through the window of Chipping Sparrows.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

All my "J-trees" Yucca brevifolia profile plant.

This just may be my all time favorite desert plant, of course I say this about every plant...  But I do love it!

The first winter this plant lived through an Idaho winter it was a dream come true.  Many winters later it is now a large trunking yucca.  It was grown from seed that was mail order from California, and is the only place I have seen Y. brevifolia with such long leaves.  The leaves on this Joshua tree are up to 18 inches long unlike most brevifolia that are 6-12 inches!
About 2 winter ago the top rotted off and now has regrown 11 new crowns.  I doubt all will grow and branch but it will soon be a yucca tree.  And too answer the question about the winter the top froze off, no it was not a very cold winter.  What killed the top was a warm fall with heavy snow and a couple of nights  near 0 deg F., this is much harder on them than a winter with -10 deg F or colder.
50deg F one week and 4deg F the next, very hard on plants.

If you live in a warmer zone 5 or better give it a try, they grow fast from seed and should start a small trunk after about five years, and can grow over a foot a year! as adults.

As always keep plants high and dry the do much better in cold climates!         

This is a sucker clone from the above j-tree.
This is one I moved to higher grown and has done much better! 

Another one I moved to higher grown, should start showing much improved growth.

These next 2 are doing much better, again moved to higher ground.

One year on higher grown and has grown over a half a foot or better!

Parting shot, a scorpion my wife caught in the house.  Smaller than the last one.
"Harmless" But still hurts!
Back outside safe under a rock, and this weekend a new door sweep is growing to keep these guys out. lol
Vejovis boreus or Paruroctonus boreus