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Desert Plants - Desert Landscaping

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Published on Dec 30, 2008

California travel expert Veronica Hill of http://www.CaliforniaTravelExpert.com offers a guide to desert plants in this episode of "California Travel Tips" filmed at the Living Desert in Palm Springs.

With little rainfall and average summer temperatures rising to over 110 degrees, desert plants must be extremely hardy to survive.

Veronica Hill of California Travel Tips tours the Living Desert botanical gardens in Palm Desert.

Let's take a look at some common desert plants and learn a few tips about drought tolerant desert landscaping.

Palm Springs is known for its tidy landscaped desert gardens, and I can't think of a better place to get new ideas and inspiration than at the Living Desert.

This peaceful and beautiful park is known for its showcase gardens of plants that grow in the Mojave, Colorado, Sonoran and Chihuahuan Deserts.

Walking along the gentle paths, you'll find specimens of barrel cactus, agave and yucca. Turn the corner and you'll find some mallow, cholla and prickly pear cactus. Many of these drought tolerant plants can go 2-3 months without water in the scorching desert heat.

My guide Glenn explained that one of the most amazing and useful desert plants is the fragrant creosote bush. Its leaves are used for healing by native Indians and its tangled roots as shelter by desert animals. If you are ever in the desert after a rainstorm, the smell of creosote is unmistakable.

At the Living Desert, you'll also find desert trees such as the Joshua Tree, Mesquite Tree and Escarpment Live Oak, while the Palm Garden features several hundred palm trees from around the world.

If you want to grow a hummingbird garden or butterfly garden, you'll find some great ideas here — and proof that they work.

At the Wortz Demonstration Garden, you'll find some great examples of Southwest landscape design, complete with beautiful gates, stonework, water fountains and rustic yard art.

On your way out, stop by the Palo Verde Garden Center. You can purchase a wide variety of unique cacti, succulents and other desert plants not found elsewhere in the state.

I hope this visit to the Living Desert has given you some insight into the beautiful plants and landscaping of our North American deserts.

The Living Desert
47-900 Portola Avenue, Palm Desert, CA 92260 760-346-5694
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