Desert Garden
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Living in the desert opens up new vistas for someone interested in gardening. Desert gardens can be sensational while consuming relatively little water and supporting native pollinators. Tucson's growing season is almost year round and we are blessed with numerous native plants nurseries and botanical resources, including UA cooperative extension information found here.

Our urban gardens can provide children as well as adults with abundant lessons in plant-insect interactions (see ASU Professor John Alcock's "In a Desert Garden").

Below are some photos taken in my backyard in 2007.

All photos © Dan Papaj


Trichocereus, Gaura, Psilostrophe (paper flower), and Verbena.

Oenothera (evening primrose) can barely be seen next to the Verbena.

there is some kind of Salvia with purple flowers in upper right quadrant.

Closeup of the Trichocereus blooms, which lasted only a day


It's Helianthus annus, but what variety?

From a mixed packet of seeds.

cactus flowers
... and a cactus species to be named later...
Gauria, verbena, artimesia

Artemesia in upper left and Gaura lindheimeri in foreground

The Gaura is a pink variety, the white form being more common.

Trichocereus bloom;

there are numerous color forms.
uid cactus blooms
another unidentified cactus species

Artemisia and Rabitida (Mexican Hat)

Mexican Hat re-seeds like crazy but persists only where there is extra watering.


Aloysia is a native shrub whose flowers have an enrapturing lilac-like scent.

Flowers for much of the year and is heavily visited by pollinators.

Last modified: 07-Aug-2009
Webmaster: Dan Papaj
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