Red Hills desert garden, St George Utah

Red Hills desert garden

While visiting Snow Canyon last weekend we stopped at the new Red Hills desert garden by St George, Ut. It is a very new park, barely more than one year old according to the locals. The plants are small but with the exception of the Utah agaves (!), all are doing well. Continue reading “Red Hills desert garden, St George Utah”


Barrel Cactus

just the right size 

Speaking of cactus… the Table of Pain was missing a barrel cactus, round and mean they can frequently be found with enviable girths. But on the table space is at a premium so it took some exploring to find a baby barrel.

Cactus and Tropicals came through for me. They have the most spectacular exemplar in the ground of their greenhouse in the Sugar House location. I took a few quick shots a few nights ago:



The largest on above is probably 20-24 inches in diameter. I am not counting on mine ever getting so large but it would be nice to see it grow, even a little.


agave 1.0

a new kid on the Table of Pain (patent pending)

I have an agave at last. Its origins are modest, as proletarian as they get actually: the Home Depot on 33rd South. This is just not the season to be looking for agaves, but somehow the HD doesn’t get it, in fact they pay no attention whatsoever to the season or the hardiness zone… It’s as if they use a great portal of randomness and out pops WHATEVER! Continue reading “agave 1.0”

Cactus + Zion National Park

Chollas at the entrance of Zion National Park, Utah

It’s been so cold in the Salt Lake Valley lately, 21 degrees this morning when I drove Finn to school, a far cry from the balmy 50’s  we experienced the weekend before Thanks Giving in Springdale, Utah. I thoroughly enjoyed the last of the warmth and snapped away at the many (giant) cactus we encountered around the main road and on trail.

Continue reading “Cactus + Zion National Park”

to cactus or not to cactus?

gifted prickly pear, variety unknown

A valid question for those of us in this perfectly dry, arid, desiccated climate… To invite a cactus into your yard is to invite pain but also a sense of fun. Here when someone starts growing prickly pear it is a declaration to the world that yes, we have turned a page on English borders in the desert and are ready to take on the heat. At least that is what a good friend told me while visiting with my new (entirely gifted)  dry garden: You are a girl of the West now Juliette! she exclaimed, a long way away from my native France…

Continue reading “to cactus or not to cactus?”