Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Southwestern Deserts

September, 2014
Regional Report

Web Finds

Arizona Native Plant Society
The nonprofit Arizona Native Plant Society website contains such useful information as sources for native plants and seeds; regulations on salvaging native plants from the wild; excellent details on exotic/invasive species; links to related sites; and a desert wildflower watch, detailing where to find seasonal flowers in bloom.

Favorite or New Plant

Chinese Pistache
If you have sufficient space, consider deciduous Pistacia chinensis for your landscape. This tree's canopy offers dense shade and probably the most dramatic fall color available for the low desert. Foliage colors vary somewhat from gold to orange to scarlet, so buy it in fall so you can see what color you're getting if that matters to you. There are also named varieties available, such as Red Push. Chinese pistache drops all its leaves when temperatures cool, so you%ll have some raking to do, but deciduous trees make excellent choices to protect windows with eastern exposures. Determine your site size carefully because Chinese pistache grows about 40 feet tall and 35 feet wide, although can get up to 50 feet by 40 feet with perfect conditions.

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