Saturday, May 20, 2006

Life-Giving Rain

My yard is 1/2 civilized and 1/2 sage brush. (It used to be all sage brush, so I feel like I'm making progress!) I'm overwhelmed by the size of this half-acre property, so I've parcelled it into small sections, creating new garden beds, each year.

In the meantime, the wild side is left to do whatever comes naturally. At least, that was the plan. Then I fell in love with these dainty, little wildflowers - Meadow Phlox. They speckle the backyard, putting on a pretty show after a spring rain.

Mountain wildflowers have evolved to handle adverse conditions, such as poor soil and long periods of drought. Regular watering, or fertilizer, can often spell the end to them. Here's what works: once a month I drench them - in the same way a hard rain hits this high plains desert, bringing everything back to life. (I suppose that's cheating. But, I figure... what they don't know, can't hurt 'em.)

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