Lookin’ Fly – More Spring Flowers

Lookin' Fly - More Spring Flowers


With the rain this weekend everything in the yard is looking fluffed and happy.  All the flowers I talked about last week are still blooming, plus tons more!


Clockwise from top left:


Parry’s Penstemon – I consider these a staple for any desert garden.  They have beautiful blooms, which can range from light to dark pink/purple, plus they have some incredible hybrids now that have pink/peach/orange gradients.  Every spring when they bloom I end up wanting to plant about a dozen new pots of them so I have a mass of color.  Hummingbirds love them, and the cool thing is that they remember to come back to your yard every year once they know you’ve got some food on hand.  To add a cherry on top, they readily re-seed themselves.


Firecracker Penstemon – Again, a garden staple.  These guys have been in bloom for about two and a half weeks already and probably have another week left to go.  They are super showy and also re-seed.  I don’t see the hummingbirds checking them out much, but the honeybees go wild for them.  I want my yard packed with bees!  I bought a couple of these a few years back and now the clumps are about three times the original size, so the show gets better each year.


(Neon Pink) Globe Mallow – Globe mallow in the spring is a desert essential.  Normally you see both the medium and light orange around town, but I found this hot pink cultivar last spring and couldn’t resist.  They don’t seem to flower as profusely as the orange, and they also don’t re-seed as far as I can tell, but the color is amazing.  Globe mallow usually puts on a huge show in the spring and then the whole plant turns crispy brown by May or June, so you can just trim it all the way back (almost to the ground) and wait for it to make a reappearance with summer or fall rain.


Indigo Bush (Dalea pulchra) – I think this shrub usually blooms more towards the middle of the winter, but for some reason mine is just waking up.  When mature they can grow to be an extremely low maintenance 4’x4′ shrub with small silvery leaves, and will be covered in flowers that resemble common clover for weeks (maybe months?).  They’re evergreen and work well when mixed in with things that have more structure, like agaves and desert spoons.  Also, bees love ’em!


As I was poking around the web this morning I found a great native plant list from a fellow landscape designer here in Tucson.  I’ll probably spam you with this at least 100 more times because native plants are totally the way to go – and we have so many options.  Plus, this list is actually from the Tucson basin – other lists stretch as far west as California and east to Texas, which leaves a lot of room for  things that might not do so well here (and may not support our native bees/birds/butterflies/lizards, etc).  Have a look, whydontcha: http://www.gardeninginsights.com/html/articles/totallyTucson.htm

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