I finally took photos of some plants I’ve eyeballed to and fro some projects and my Saturday morning breakfast taco haunt!
To those without their desert eyes on, they are just shrubs. From 7/31/14 –
One reader, formerly from interior southern California, calls areas of such plants “elfin forests”, forming “chaparral tunnels”. Makese sense, and at 6′ tall, I’m quite comfortable standing next to and especially sitting under such a tree.
While these examples aren’t small spaces, there are constraints of utilities or nearby vegetation. And that’s perfect for dwarf trees – most are large shrubs but gently trained to provide close-range scale and intimacy, even some shade.
Now picture them in a tight space between buildings, by an intimate patio, or anywhere it’s unethical to plant a larger, future problem.
And many of us have done that, though I try not to – plant supplier-stranglehold allowing.
Now to another underutilized, also lush plant, which also forms a dwarf tree with just some modest pruning.
I cannot see him, but a transient was sitting and resting in the shade of one sumac in this grouping. I tried to respect his privacy, but such a mountain vista…
Both the Vauquelinia and Rhus are hardy to at least 90s and low 100s all summer, dry air, and to cold in USDA zone 7 (arid). One reader told me they even thrive in extreme Dallas.
Can you think of plants that fit this bill in your area? Mountain Mahogany, Mexican Buckeye, Wax Myrtle, Toyon…