My husband and I have lived here in Colorado on this lovely property since 1986. I had no idea when we bought the property how many different ecological zones exist on the property. We have two meadows, a dry gulch and a damp gulch with a seasonal stream, slopes facing all four compass directions so we have hot, sunny slopes and cooler, moister slopes. All these areas allow for many of the native Colorado plants to thrive on our property.
I had decided not to grow the plants that I grew back east (like marigolds, canna, zinnia, tea roses) because, somehow they just did not fit with all the wild beauty of the place. As my husband and I have been reconstructing the land around our house that was poorly graded and planned when the house was built, I am trying to use mostly native plants that I have found growing on our own property. I've made some exceptions like three leaf sumac and rabbit brush; I have observed plants like these growing in nearby parks with environments similar to ours.
I cannot say I have had a resounding amount of success yet. So far, my efforts have been undocumented and sporadic. I have more time now to devote to growing native plants and hope to be more scientific in my approach.
This section is divided into 4 main categories. Each category starts with an overview of plants in the category that I have tried to grow and what my success has been. Within each category, I provide a specific page for each plant. These are the 4 categories:
Trees. Most of my efforts at propagating trees has been purchasing potted trees from the Colorado State Forestry Service. My future plans include trying to determine when the evergreen cones are ripe and the seed viable so I can collect seed from our existing trees.
Shrubs. I have made attempts at propagating various shrubs with limited success so far. But I have a lot of ideas on how to improve my success ratio.
Wildflowers. Wildflowers are my main love. I have had success with both growing wildflowers from seed and transplanting growing plants from various places on our property. We have over 80 types of wildflowers and I hope to be able to propagate many of these.
Cactus. My greatest success has been propagating the two type of cactus that grow up here at 8,150 feet.
As you read the details on various plants, you will notice a recurrent theme - my plants are eaten by deer and other critters. I plan to try at least one of the deer deterrent products that are on the market today to see if I can keep the deer away from my gardens.
I also plan to take images of seed that I collect and plants that I am transplanting. I will be adding these images to the specific plant pages.