Monday, April 4, 2011

Arizona Landscaping; Some Very Special Caciti/Succulents

In this one picture, a lot of the different textures, shapes, and colors available to an Arizona landscape designer are shown. Let me 1st tell you what all is pictured above, from nearest to furthest away with a short description and then I will rant about it a little:

1 - Left corner Aloe, a "Blue Elf" I think (just the tips are shown) - dark and light green contrast, flowers orange/yellow at the tips of interesting "stalks".

2 - Next to the right is the Agave Parryi (such a useful Agave in designs) provides an almost perfectly symmetrical shape and, as you can see, brilliant (and year round :) blue color.

3 -Next to the right - the fuzzy looking vertical ones - Cleistocactus strausii or "Silver Torch". Again, provides year round color (white of course), beautiful pink flowers in the spring, and an a unique shape and texture as well.

4- Behind the Silver Torch is an Argentine Giant. They have an AMAZING flower in the spring that makes everyone drop their jaw ... everytime. There is a picture in our potrfolio of the Trico Cereus, which is quite similar

5 - To the far left you have the native Ferocactus wislizeni or Fishhook Barrel. With its red "hooks" and yellow fruit, round shape AND orangish flowers. Yes, it brings a lot to the landscape.

6- In the background you have the Green Desert Spoon (wispy one), a Purple Prickly Pear, and some more Agave.

So... the point I am trying to make here is that there is plenty of character, color, texture and style to create a really beautiful, diverse landscape using all cacti/succulents whilst NOT using all the water from the Colorado River to grow a few Hibiscus or Ficus that will freeze and need replacing/ heavy trimming like this year (I am not anti-Hibiscus or totally against using tropical plants here and there. I even have large Ficus that was already there when I bought my house. Just using those as a comparisons)

Guess how much trimming the above grouping of cacti need? Zero. Water? Minimal to None once established. This means no dump trips, no waste, a lot less money/time, fuel etc etc. They also gain consistent, real VALUE and character for the landscape as they mature.

Also, these are all pretty slow growing varieties that don't really ever get to big to control. If the Prickly Pear or Aloe gets a little big for the space, you can cut a piece off and RE-USE it somewhere else, or give it as a gift to your favorite sister or something. Pretty awesome right !

If your interpretation of "Arizona Landscaping" is what you see at Sky Harbor airport, or in the medians.... Please go to Arizona Cactus Sales and look around or call us to design something special just for you. The more I learn about Cacti, the more I fascinated I become.


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