Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Ocotillo and Olenders in full Bloom!

Over the weekend, my Ocotillo came into full bloom as did my Oleander bushes.

The Ocotillo is a unique native desert plant that lends striking accent with its low-branching, leafy, whip like canes topped with bright orange-red flowers. Ocotillos can grow to 15 feet in height and as wide. They are typically leafless most of the year, but profuse leafing of the canes follows periods of sufficient soil moisture. During periods of drought, these curious plants shed their leaves to reduce evaporative loss and conserve plant moisture. Widely adaptable to landscape use, ocotillos are right at home in the desert Southwest. The flower as you can see just magnificent!

The Oleander plants are near the front of my home, and while not native, they are an evergreen shrub that easy to grow and can be used as a bush, a tree or as a hedge. Oleander is low maintenance but toxic, so should be avoided in gardens with children. It is also known by the name Rose Laurel, but is most commonly known as Oleander and it is a wonderful, rewarding shrub to cultivate with spectacular blooms.

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