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I drive over to the city’s west side a couple of times a week, and when I do, it’s impossible not to notice the missed opportunities landscaping-wise. There are empty medians, medians filled with dead and dying plants, and then all the areas with improperly pruned plants, like here:

Butchered is a better description than improperly pruned.

Looks like many of the Apache Plume have already died from the injustice – note the gaps between plants:

They should be full and wispy, and not box-shaped.

These photos aren’t that great – it’s absolutely terrifying driving on the west side, much less pulling over to photograph anything. (Hence no photos of the dead medians.) Sorry about that, but safety first!

Sigh.

The bad pruning goes on for miles.

I’ll be back manana, hope to see you here.

Because otherwise, you get Apache Plume shrubs that look like these:

Sigh.

Hello Agave pups, and happy Monday! Hope you all had a great weekend!

For the last few months, I’ve been taking photographs of the strange desert flowers I see around Albuquerque and New Mexico. It seems like everything is blooming – we’ve had some generous rain.

I’ve been living in the desert Southwest for 12 years now, and I’m still amazed by the wacky plants that thrive here. It’s just so dang different from Indiana, where I was raised.

I can still remember the first time I saw an Ocotillo. I was like, “Whaaaaat?” And with those crazy orange blooms?

My but your flower is impressive! I’ve been calling these “Dr. Seuss” plants. They are all over town right now. Which is sad, because these are Agave plants, and they die after they flower. I’m guessing they’re a bitch to remove once they’re dead, too, but I don’t have first-hand experience with that.

I love the Prickly Pears! Such mean, thorny plants with delicate little blooms in all sorts of colors.

I’m partial to the pink ones. Yes, because I’m a girl.

Speaking of mean, thorny cacti, here’s a Cholla cactus. I like to give these wide berth. Pretty blooms though!

I don’t recall seeing Yuccas in Indiana, so of course, I’m fascinated by them. They come in so many different colors. Like yellow. And red:

Plus, there are so many varieties and types of blooms.

That’s some funky shit right there!

I’d never thought much about the desert before moving here. I do remembering thinking it would be mostly brown. Nothing could be further from the truth. Lest you get suckered into believing in the brownness, here’s photographic evidence to the contrary.

There’s purple Russian Sage:

Pink Mexican Primrose:

Cherry Sage:

If that wasn’t red enough for you, here are red blossoms on an Ice plant:

Orange Trumpet vines – now there’s a plant I recognize from Indiana:

So yes, the desert is quite colorful. It’s also filled with billowy, poofy plants, like this Bird of Paradise:

I love anything with plumes.

I think this is a Smoke tree. It’s poofy, I like it!

Apache plume, also very nice. Definitely not a Midwestern plant.

Colorful, poofy, weird and wonderful plants. Some, though, are downright dangerous. Like Jimsonweed, for example:

This photo was taken at sunset – you can see the blossoms are set to open. I think it’s super funky that it blooms at night. Every part of this plant is poisonous – the leaves, the roots, the flowers.

So there are at least some of the crazy plants in bloom around town. There are many, many more that I neglected to add to the list, but I will add them in a future post.

Hope you enjoyed! I’ll be back manana. Until then, happy gardening!

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About Me

Hi! My name is Liza. Welcome to my blog and thanks for visiting! I'm a Midwestern gal now living in the beautiful Land of Enchantment, Albuquerque, New Mexico. I have a plant care business here in town called Good To Grow. I can beautify your home, office, or patio with plants and flowers. I have 13 years of experience growing plants, and friendships.

Plants are living, breathing creatures, and if they're indoor plants, they are 100% dependent on human care. They cannot water themselves.

Please let me know if you have questions or if you would like help with your plants or garden. You can reach me at lizatheplantlady (at) gmail (dot) com or follow me on Twitter, Lizawheeler7.

All photos are mine unless otherwise noted. All content is also entirely my hard work. If you'd like to use any content or photos, all you have to do is ask. If you take without asking, you are a thief. And thieves suck. So don't suck. We have a deal? Good.

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