Red Yucca Varieties

Red Yucca Varieties Red Yucca   Hesperaloe parviflora  is a versatile, evergreen shrubby perennial that is adapted to most areas in Texas. It is tolerant of alkaline to acid soils, sun, part sun or shade and while very drought tolerant it will also tolerate seasonally wet soils as long as the soil is well drained. They are winter hardy to   -20°F which makes them especially suitable for planting in pots in Central Texas. Coral to salmon-pink flowers appear on 6’ tall bloom stalks several times throughout the summer and are hummingbird [...]

By |2024-02-11T14:30:35-06:00February 11th, 2024|Succulents and Cacti|

Protecting Tropical Plants in the Winter

Protecting Tropical Plants in the Winter Our tropical plants have been happy outside over the summer, but cold weather is soon approaching. We need be prepared to bring our tender plants inside for a short freeze or even find them a bright spot indoors for the entire winter.       Before bringing them inside, check for fire ants in the soil. A soil drench with Captain Jack’s Deadbug Brew (with Spinosad) a few days before bringing them inside will kill any ants in the soil.         [...]

By |2023-10-29T14:06:27-05:00November 2nd, 2022|Plants, Houseplants, Succulents and Cacti|

Succulent Bowls Step by Step

If you love succulents, chances are that you will want to put together your own "creation" in the form of a succulent bowl. Since I have been around a long time (I am NOT old!), I have learned the "hard way" how to do many things, and I'd like to help you avoid a few pitfalls. Disclaimer: Just because this is the way that I have found best to plant succulent bowls myself does not mean that there are not many other ways of doing this. Please take this information [...]

By |2022-06-19T10:33:08-05:00June 19th, 2022|Plants, Houseplants, Succulents and Cacti|


Is it an Agave or Manfreda? It’s both! A cross between an Agave daddy and a Manfreda mama produces a new hybrid called x Mangave. (The “x” tells you that it is a cross between different genera.) Thankfully, it is polycarpic like its mama, not monocarpic like the Agave, so it does not die after blooming. That is a good thing, because it produces bizarre flowers that hummingbirds absolutely love! It has inherited an aversion to winter moisture from both parents, so well- drained soil or container growing is a [...]

By |2023-02-28T08:34:54-06:00September 23rd, 2020|Succulents and Cacti|

Desert Rose

Desert Rose (Adenium obtusum)             Like Oleanders, Adenium is a member of the Dogbane family (Apocynaceae) They are native to the deserts of South and East Africa and the Arabian Peninsula.  Since they are considered to be a tropical plant in Central Texas, the plants should be grown in pots so that they can be brought indoors in cool weather.             Young plants should be grown in filtered sunlight, outdoors, in pots under a sparsely branched tree, or at the edge of a canopy of a more densely branched tree. [...]

By |2023-02-28T08:36:01-06:00May 13th, 2020|Houseplants, Succulents and Cacti|

Moroccan Mound Euphorbia

This is the case of a cactus that is not actually a cactus, but is closely related. Technically, it is classified as a succulent, even though it does have spines. It is also related to the Christmas Poinsettia, but don’t tell it that! This low-growing succulent has a lengthy history of cultivation, and is one of the oldest documented medical plants of all the Euphorbia species. Mounding to 1’-2’ tall and spreading to 4’ wide, its pale blue-green upright, four-sided stems are adorned with brown spines along the margins. Small [...]

By |2023-02-28T08:37:19-06:00June 26th, 2019|Succulents and Cacti|

Beyond Cactus for Your Xeriscape

Your Xeriscape Tutorial Anyone who is stuck watering their lawn (or with the water bill) over our long, hot summers can probably appreciate the notion of a nice xeriscape. Cacti are a popular choice for xeriscaping, are well-suited for hot and dry weather, and look sharp (pun intended) in many different settings. They are not the only choice, however. There are many drought-tolerant plants and shrubs that can be added into a water-wise landscape. There are also several plants that are just as low-maintenance as cactus. Click the links to [...]

By |2023-02-28T08:39:44-06:00July 12th, 2018|Succulents and Cacti|

Christmas Cactus vs. Thanksgiving Cactus vs. Easter Cactus

Christmas cactus and Thanksgiving Cactus are tropical plants native to the rainforests of Brazil. They grow in similar environments as epiphytic orchids, in the forks of tree limbs, where they grow in decayed leaves and other natural debris that accumulates there. The flattened stem segments have no true leaves. The shapes of the segments differ in each species, which aids in identification. Easter Cactus also grows in forests in Brazil, but in drier forests than the Christmas and Thanksgiving Cactus. They are not considered tropical plants and their care will [...]

By |2023-02-28T08:42:05-06:00November 27th, 2017|Plants, Houseplants, Succulents and Cacti|

Agave Snout Weevils

The Agave Snout Weevils are at it again! The females have spent the past spring chewing into the Agaves and Yuccas and laying their eggs. They chew into the leaf bases, leaving behind a bacteria (Erwinia) as they go. That bacteria rots the heart of the plant. A small hole at the base of the leaf may indicate the entrance of the beetle. The eggs have now hatched into grub-like larvae, and have tunneled into the rotting heart of the plant. Damage to a Yucca caused by Agave Snout [...]

By |2023-02-28T08:44:09-06:00April 1st, 2017|Insects, Succulents and Cacti|
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