By: Tony Steine
You may think that most of the native plants in the Phoenix area will be those in the cactus family with little to no coloring. However, while cactus is definitely a staple in native landscapes there are quite a few other native species that call the Phoenix area home. These other varieties offer a wide range of coloring for your desert based garden without requiring too much precious water. Check out these 5 native plants for easy gardening in Phoenix, Arizona:
This beautiful yellow display of delicate daisies is a great addition to any desert based garden. Angelita Daisy enjoys full-to-partial sunlight without needing very much water at all. This is a fast-growing plant that also does well when placed near pools. A mature plant will form round 1 foot clumps that will grow well when placed along a border. Angelita Daisy attracts wildlife and is a great year-round native choice for a Phoenix garden.
Another desert beauty is the Canyon Penstemon that features tiny delicate fuchsia-colored flowers. This perennial has a moderate growth rate that will reach about 18 inches in height and 2 feet wide. The mature rosette form will add beauty and texture to any garden in the Phoenix area. Look for the blooming spikes of color during spring as well as visitors from neighborhood pollinators. Plant Canyon Penstemon seeds in the fall in order for enough growing time for the spring season.
This native ornamental grass is great for use in the desert region. It enjoys full to partial sun and grows quickly up to 4 feet wide and high. The mounding form of deer grass creates texture and interest to a garden as well as a lot of ground cover to help deter weeds. It is a deciduous evergreen that turns tan in the fall giving your garden more contrasting color options. Deer grass requires little amounts of water and is does well when planted near rocks or in a xeriscape.
For another bright addition of color, the Blue Palo Verde is a remarkable tree that offers a gorgeous yellow to the Phoenix landscape. Its water requirement is substantially less than other trees and it enjoys full or reflected of sunlight. The Blue Palo Verde grows fast and can reach up to 30 feet in height and width making this a showstopper in a garden. The yellow blooms appear in the spring and then turn to a muted blue-green color as summer arrives. Plant a few of these in the garden to help shade your home during the hot summer season.
This native succulent has an interesting shape that forms a tight rosette of thorny blades. Parry’s Agave does best in full sunlight and doesn’t require much water. It features bright yellow blooms in the summer and has sharp tips that can hurt to the touch. The coarse texture offers interest to a garden as well. This slow grower will eventually reach a size of 2 feet high and wide making it a good option in garden beds or in areas that don’t see many daily visitors given its sharp composition.
Using native plants in your yard in order to support the local environment as well as cut down on extra water usage. Choose from a wide range of colors and textures that will all do well in the desert climate of the Phoenix area. Consider these 5 native plants for easy gardening in Phoenix to help the local ecosystem thrive for years to come.
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