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Desert Landscaping Ideas

The folks in the Southwest part of our country get to enjoy the beauty and ease of gardening with desert landscaping ideas. Desert plants need little water, are hardy and also easy to transplant. They come in many interesting types, some with beautiful blossoms and others with unique shapes.


The Yucca tree grows tall and produces a beautiful flower. Other cacti with their menacing spines can be very intimidating, but will also flower during certain times of the year. Due to their spiny thorns, surrounding your yard with them can act as a security fence.


Desert landscaping ideas are perfect for an area that gets direct sun all day. Commonly the north side of your home is in the shade most of the day. Landscape shade plants will do will in this part of the yard and add some variety to your landscape plans. Shade plants can produce some beautiful flowers as well.

Desert Plant Varieties

Listed below are just a few of the hundreds of varieties of desert landscape plants as well as a few landscape shade plants. The hot and dry climates produce many beautiful and hearty plants to choose from.


Agave Americana: The interesting form and the plant's high tolerance to heat, drought, cold, sun, and even poor soils makes this an ideal all-around plant. The Agave Americana will grow anywhere from one to six feet tall, developing into unique styles of leafs and beautiful colors.


Opuntia phaecantha variety discata, This is a very hardy plant that can survive in cold weather and will produce a beautiful deep yellow flower in the spring and summer months. It does tend to crawl along the ground and root as it goes. It has very sharp long spines that can be dangerous if planted around children.


Golden Barrel: This desert plant has beautiful gold flowers with gold colored foliage. At maturity, the plant will reach about four feet high and three feet in diameter.


North Side Of the Garden

Some varieties of shade plants can also thrive in a desert environment if planted on the north side of your home.


One type of plant is the astilbes, also known as the feather flower, due to the shape of its blooms which are puffy, feather like spires that come in white, ivory, pink, red and purple. For an easy care plant with lots of color, great texture and toughness astilbes would be a great addition to your garden.


Hostas are another shade variety that blends in well with desert landscaping plants. They are perennials that come in several types, some with solid green or variegated leaves. They produce flowers white, pink or purple flowers and can grow in full or partial shade.


Another type of shade plant is the Liriope Spicata. This plant resembles grass and is sometime called border grass. It has flowers the turn from white to purple when it is blooming then a dark berry grows on the plant in the fall.


Often labeled a day lily the Foxglove is extremely versatile and grows equally as well in the sun as it does it the shade. The flowers produced by this plant are striking and vary in color depending on the species. It is however a poisonous plant and should not be exposed to children and pets.