March 27, 2024

Wordless Las Vegas Area 'Arrangements'

Colorful mixed planting at the hotel

City 3
Buxus sempervirens and Cyclamen persicum

Sloan Canyon Ferocactus cylindraceus
Ferocactus cylindraceus at Sloan Canyon National Conservation Area

City 2
Pelargonium × hortorum and Viola × wittrockiana

VOF Senna artemisioides
Senna artemisioides at Valley of Fire State Park

City 1
Mixed planting along 'The Strip'

Red Rocks Yucca schidigera
Yucca schidigera and desert view at Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area

'Flowers' on the Sphere

March 18, 2024

IAVOM: Simple Early Season Treasures

Spring is happening early in my part of the world. Flowers began blooming in February, and many plants are breaking the soil surface preparing for the growing season ahead. With the exception of the Snowdrops, I rarely pick these early season flowers--for some reason I don't want to disturb them. ;-)


Because of this reluctance, I only picked a few, and I share a very simple vase/bowl.

Two of the Hellebore (Helleborus orientalis) varieties have been in my garden for many years, and their cultivar was not listed. The one in the middle is Helleborus x hybridus 'Sandy Shores.' Also included are a few Crocuses (C. vernus) and some Snowdrops (Galanthus nivalis 'Flore Pleno'). The Crocuses were closed when I picked them in the morning, and they opened a bit more later.


I also combined a tiny bouquet of 'Flore Pleno' with some Barrenwort foliage (Epimedium x warleyense) remaining from the previous season.

We'll have several days in the week ahead with temperatures below normal, while March, until now, has been unseasonably warm. I hope the blooms/plants outdoors will be OK.

I'm joining in with Cathy's In a Vase on Monday meme. Head on over to see the other amazing entries!

March 10, 2024

Nevada Highlights: Plant Treasures at Springs Preserve Botanical Garden


We're recently back from a trip to Nevada, where we enjoyed both exploring natural areas and sightseeing in urban Las Vegas. One highlight was a visit to the Botanical Garden at Springs Preserve. As always, I could have spent many more hours exploring the plant collections, but our brief visit was educational and fun.

Opal Flower 'Quadricolor'

One plant that really caught my eye, was the four-colored Opal Flower (Lachenalia aloides var. quadricolor). I think I've seen this plant before; perhaps during travels to other warm climates, or on another blogger's post. In any case, it's certainly colorful and fascinating. It's native to southern Africa.


The botanical garden has an amazing collection of cacti and desert succulents, both around the various trails and in its Cactus Alley display. A few examples:

California Barrel Cactus

California Barrel Cactus (Ferocactus cylindraceus)

Thistle Cholla

Thistle Cholla (Cylindropuntia tunicata)

Argentine Giant

Argentine Giant (Echinopsis candicans)

Silver Torch

Silver Torch (Cleistocactus strausii)

Cottontop Cactus

Cottontop Cactus (Echinocactus polycephalus var. polycephalus)

Pincushion Cactus

Pincushion Cactus (Mammillaria pseudoperbella)

Parry's Agave

Parry's Agave (Agave parryi var. parryi)

Rainwater Collection

Springs Preserve's water system is designed to be self-sustaining--collecting gray water for treatment and recycling for plant irrigation.

Resting Area

The Palm Garden offers shade and a welcoming resting spot.

Pansies and Kale

During our visit, the botanical garden also had sweet displays of common garden plants, including potted Pansies (Viola spp.) and Kale (Brassica oleracea).


Daffodils (Narcissus pseudonarcissus)


Snapdragons (Antirrhinum majus)

Other interesting plants of note:

Upright Myrtle Spurge

Upright Myrtle Spurge (Euphorbia rigida), popular with the bees, ants, and other pollinators.

Peach Blossom

Peach blossoms (Prunus persica), with their lovely, delicate beauty.

Texas Virgin's Bower

Texas Virgin's Bower (Clematis drummondii), native to the Southwestern U.S.

Spring Bouquet Viburnum

'Spring Bouquet' Viburnum (V. tinus), delicate and fresh, and also popular with the pollinators.

Desert Bluebells

And Desert Bluebells (Phacelia campanularia): Who can resist that bright, true blue?

It was a lovely afternoon visit. If I'm ever in the Las Vegas area again, I'll make sure to stop by this fabulous botanical garden for more exploration.