Saturday, February 18, 2017

The Gardening Begins

I dutifully filled out the forms for my plans to landscape our Arizona abode and everything was approved, which surprised some people because I had twelve plants on my list.  But, I did a lot of research into what will work the best during the summers when they are on their own and stuck with the smaller, lower growing ones...mostly. I got the first bunch planted, but am still looking for some of the others on my list.

It really changed the looks of the yard already by removing the odd corner piece and relocating the concrete circle to the hibiscus bush where it will help hold the water.  We are allowed two drippers and the one for this bush was buried deep underneath the bush, so I raised it up to make sure it's working and hopefully this will improve its appearance.

I'll use colorful pots with annuals to add more color and some height and I'm sure there will be some additional metal art and a trellis coming my way.  I found a cheap little glass bird bath at Walmart that work for now to create some color as well as water for the birds.

I couldn't resist this cute little mammalaria with the pink flowers and even though it wasn't on my list I snuck it in...shhh, don't tell anyone.

This is the Argentine giant and in the spring apparently gets huge white flowers that bloom in the dark.  Not to worry about the giant part, it stays about three feet tall.

This is a fishhook cactus and I was warned by the man I bought it from that unlike the others that just leave needles in your skin, this will rip the flesh right off your hand.  Charming.  I planted it very carefully and without incident.

This is the guy that had me the most worried with all those nasty looking spikes, but again it went in without any harm to my body.  It's not the most attractive looking plant, but will have some deep claret blooms in the spring.

This one was advised to be planted in the back to allow for growth of its "arms".  It is called a Mexican fence post and apparently is used to create fences.  I'll bet that's very effective.  He looks so tiny and lost right now, but I was told they can grow about a foot during the summer.

He's toward the back and near the bedroom window.

I had to have one of the prickly pear cactus for the shape and form, plus the spring blooms.  I can't wait to see the blooms before we head north.

This is the Blue Elf aloe and the orange tubular flowers attract hummingbirds, so I planted it in front near the bird feeders.  I really like the texture this provides.  I wanted the partridge breast aloe, but he didn't recommend it very highly unless it can be watered.

I almost didn't get the following one because of some things I'd read online about it causing blindness if the sap gets into your eyes.  After talking to the man I get my plants from I wasn't as concerned.  Yes, if the sap gets into your eyes you will lose about 80% of your vision for several hours and it hurts like the dickens.  He's had it happen to him twice now.  So, when pruning and exposing the sap it's good to wear protective eye gear and not to touch your eyes...just use common sense.  I'm so glad he talked to me about this because the Fire Sticks are so pretty and provide a nice deep reddish orange to the garden and the form reminds me of coral.  I put this on the corner of the house as they can get quite large and it will soften the corner of the house.

I'm having a ball digging holes and augmenting the soil with potting soil as was recommended.  It's a far cry from the heavy clay I was used to working with.  Now I need to find those flowering groundcovers I've been looking for and get those pots filled up.

Long Live the Queen


  1. Cheryl, it looks great. You found some great speciman plants. Can't wait to see pictures as they "grow up". Welcome back to the world of gardening!!!

  2. Ahhhh, now it is "home"!! It just needed some birds and lots of pretty plants. I can't wait to see all the beautiful new blooms. You have magic gardening hands my friend. I'm sure your yard will be a showpiece when it is done. Have a wonderful day, hugs, Edna B.

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