Extraordinary Succulents Grown Indoors

11/11/2018 Ken Davis

by Ken Lain, the mountain gardener The jade plant you grandmother grew is so yesterday. The popularity of succulent plants has exploded in recent years, due not only to the low care requirements of these sun lovers but also because…

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How to Plant a Living Christmas Tree

12/13/2017 Ken Davis

by Ken Lain, the mountain gardener An evergreen that has had a starring role in the mountains of Arizona is gaining nationwide popularity. The ‘Single Blue Pinyon Pine’ is a local variety that gives a bold appearance to a rustic…

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Evergreen Privacy After the Leaves Fall

11/04/2016 Ken Davis

by Ken Lain, the mountain gardener As trees drop the last of their colorful leaves our gardens tend to feel naked. It even seems like prying eyes can look right into your home!  Not only does your privacy seemingly disappear,…

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Recipes for preparing Prickly Pear Cactus Pads

05/03/2016 Ken Lain, mountain gardener

Prickly Pear Creole 2 cups of diced cactus – remove spine with a knife first 1 pound of hamburger (cooked and drained) 6 ounces of tomato paste 1 cup of water 2 diced Jalapeño pepper
s 6 1/2 ounces of canned shrimp…

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40 Waterwise Plants and Natives by Flower Color

04/30/2016 Ken Davis

by Ken Lain, the mountain gardener We’ve all seen  dreary, low-water landscapes. Though well-intentioned, the only color is gray to gray-green, with plants that look brittle and bone-dry. But water-wise gardens can be vibrant, colorful, and yes, even lush-looking. Although…

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Pine Needles Bad for Our Gardens?

11/14/2015 Ken Davis

By Ken Lain, the mountain gardener If you live in a neighborhood where ponderosa pines grow freely, you know about too many pine needles.  Pine trees drop lots of needles, especially those 50-foot giants!  Gutter guards protect my rain gutters,…

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Protect Landscapes from Wildfire

06/25/2015 Ken Davis

by Ken Lain, the mountain gardener Residents new to the mountains want to get back-to-nature, find solitude, and escape the rat race.  Locally we call this the urban-wild land interface. However, with a woodland lifestyle come risks.  For instance, this…

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Top 10 Indestructible Plants, Go Ahead . . . I Dare You!

06/05/2015 Ken Davis

by Ken Lain, the mountain gardener Every garden needs a few plants that can handle whatever abuse we throw their way. That’s not to say we should be needlessly tough on them, but let’s face it, there are places in…

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Plants for Southwest Landscapes

04/25/2015 Ken Davis

By Ken Lain, the mountain gardener Gardeners new to our area often bring with them the plants they loved back home. Admittedly, we have such a mild climate that the variety of plants that do well for us is greater…

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Timeless Beauty Desert Willow

05/31/2014 Ken Lain, mountain gardener

Large, fragrant, burgundy and lavender flowers appear in big bold clusters all summer long.  This unique Watters selection is prized for its long bloom time, without setting the usual seed pods. The flowers are highly attractive to hummingbird and 100%…

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