November 04, 2008
November arrived with some strong winds and as Norm Schilling found, lots of color in the garden.
Sky Flower (Durante erecta): Gorgeous little flowers of purple with a white rim. 8-15' High x 6-10' Wide. Can freeze back to the ground in a cold winter, but then will regrow. Long bloom season (spring through fall)
Indian Blanket Flower (Gaillardia grandiflora): Stunning red to orange to yellow daisy-like flowers. 1-2' H x 1-3' W, depending on the growing habits of the particular variety or cultivar.
Cape Plumbago (Plumbago capensis): - Lots of blue, blue, blue flowers! 3-6' H x 3-6' W. A shade lover that likes moister soils, so use organic (wood chip) mulch. Great for planting in a shady area (especially next to a lawn, so it can pick up the extra water it needs).
California Fuschia or Hummingbird Flower (Epilobium californica - was formerly Zauschneria californica): Masses of fall coral-colored blooms, spectacularly bright. Grows to about 2' H., and will spread slowly over an area. A great plant for attracting and feeding hummingbirds!
Sierra Gold Dalea (Dalea capitata 'Sierra Gold'): Cute little upright blooms of yellow with red. Very soft looking foliage. About 1' H x 4-6' W. Great groundcover.
I also mentioned 'Tecoma sp'. It is a variety of different plants but all of the same genus (Tecoma). The common name for this genus is ''Yellow Bells'' but the named varieties often are referred to as a common name based on the particular name of that variety. In other words, Tecoma hybrid 'Orange Jubilee' often goes by the common name of Orange Jubilee.
Individual species include:
Tecoma stans 'angustata' gets 5' High x 5' Wide
Tecoma stans gets 6-15' H x 6-10' W
Tecoma x 'Sunrise' gets 8' H x 8' W
Tecoma hybrid 'Orange Jubilee' gets 12' H x 8' W
Tecoma stans 'Gold Star' 8' H x 8' W
Tecoma hybrid 'Sierra Apricot' 3' H x 6' W
All species of Tecoma bloom constantly with very impressive flower shows from spring through late fall. However, they freeze back hard every winter, usually dying back to the ground, or nearly so. Following winter, they grow back quickly, and one simply prunes off the dead wood after new growth has begun.
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|Mar 24, 2014 | Spring Garden Party |
Spring is here and the garden is blooming . . . so invite some friends to enjoy the rewards of gardening!
|Mar 10, 2014 | Lady Banks |
If you love roses, but don't care for thorns, you may want to call on 'Lady Banks.' Here's Angela O'Callaghan with Desert Bloom.
|Feb 26, 2014 | Signs of Spring |
It may be February, but if you are paying attention, signs of Spring are visible. Dwarf peach and Mexican plum trees are in bloom. Vibrant Red Spraxis can be seen among the falling Almond blossom. Watch gardening expert Norm Schilling transplant an offshoot. Check out the slide show of photos taken from his backyard.
|Feb 18, 2014 | Mulch is for Winter |
Rewards for using mulch in your landscape can be had year-round. Mulch is about mulch more than just "good looks" according to Angela O' Callaghan. In any climate, and certainly in a desert, mulch is an ecologically sound way to conserve our limited soil moisture and to control weeds.
|Feb 4, 2014 | Investing for Spring |
Temperatures are scheduled to stay cool this week, but Norm Schilling finds his yard is ready for Spring. He reflects on techniques to keep older trees healthy even as the surrounding yard may change. Bigger, older trees may need more water.
|Jan 13, 2014 | Freezing Temps |
If your garden looks like it's been zapped by Jack Frost, there's still a chance that all is not lost. Delicate desert plants can suffer chill damage even when the temperature stays above freezing. Well-established plants should survive.
|Dec 31, 2013 | Leave the Leaves |
Just because most of the leaves have fallen from the trees, it doesn't mean you have to rake them all up. Norm Schilling says it's better to use the leaves as mulch to protect the plants and make rich soil. Some woody plants can be pruned now, while others should wait another month or two.
|Dec 13, 2013 | Winter Greens |
It is the season to enjoy some winter gardening. In Southern Nevada, a cold-snap does not have to mean that your garden is done for. Angela O'Callaghan gives a few cold facts.
|Dec 3, 2013 | Winter Watering |
After a recent rain followed by a cold snap this week, Norm Schilling digs in to figure out how much water is needed this time of year. Touch the leaves to get a feel and don't water much at all for the next few months.
|Nov 18, 2013 | Herb Gardens |
Our desert environment may be hard to handle for many plants, but it is possible to grow your own herbal remedy. The healing properties of some herbs are still widely recognized. Even though we rarely have to rely on them to deal with our infirmities, Angela O'Callaghan says many herbs are pretty and simple to grow.
|Nov 5, 2013 | Fall Color |
Our second Spring is in full bloom. Norm Schilling shares his favorite plants that are bringing color to the yard right now, including Chocolate Flower, Mexican Bush Sage, Autumn Sage and ornamental grasses.
|Oct 29, 2013 | Pumpkins |
Halloween just wouldn't be the same without the jack-o-lantern. But there's more to the tradition of decorating squash than meets the eye. Angela O'Callaghan says pumpkins are more than decorations for a single day. They're food, and a very good food at that.
|Sep 30, 2013 | Fall Pruning and Mulching |
Pruning for aesthetics and mulching for rich soil quality are on his to-do list before he gets started in earnest on fall planting. Find out where to find mulch and mulch more on this week's edition of Desert Bloom.
|Sep 17, 2013 | The Best Place to Garden |
The Mojave Desert isn't the easiest place to cultivate a garden, but we do have a few advantages here. In fact, Angela O'Callaghan says Southern Nevada is the BEST place in the world to be a gardener, partly because dry air helps keep our plants healthy.
|Sep 3, 2013 | Sacred Datura |
Sacred Datura is a native, but poisonous, desert plant that offers stunning blooms. Often seen at the side of the highway, it's found a home in Norm's yard.
|Aug 20, 2013 | Drought |
Living in the desert means - learning to live with less water. The more thought you put into watering, the better off your plants will be.
|Aug 6, 2013 | Casualties of Summer |
Ever the optimist, Norm finds something to learn from the casualties of summer.
|Jul 22, 2013 | White Prickly Poppy |
Is a poppy by any other name just a weed?
|Jul 9, 2013 | Agave |
Agave is well suited to our desert climate. Norm Schilling shares his collection.
|Jun 25, 2013 | Summer Vegetables |
Growing your own food in triple-digit weather is challenging, but not impossible.