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Perennials/Sun loving plants

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Question
I have a 6' long by 2' wide area that gets all day sun in the Gold Country in CA. Can you recommend some plants that will do well in this area? Since this area is in my front yard I need plants that will still look good in winter.

Answer
Hi Diana,
Thanx for your question.  I recommend looking at High Country Gardens   http://www.highcountrygardens.com/  There are lots of ideas in their catalogue for plants that are good for the Western US and are good for xeriscaping/low water requirements.

YOu can also use flowering cacti of which there are many, many varieties that would be suitable for your climate such as echinocereus and opuntia just to get your started.  Opuntia can get out of hand if you allow it so, keep it under control by lopping off new pads after the plant has reached the desired size.  Sages are great not only for foliage but colorful flowers, lantana, aloes, ice plants, torch lily, agastache, mints (mints can get out of control.  you can control them by isolating them in a container and then sinking the container in the desired areas.).  


Check out Sonoma County Master Gardners.  They have some great information on native California plants.


http://ucanr.edu/sites/scmg/Sonoma_Gardener_Articles/Natives_Now/

Here's another link for local references you may want to review.

http://cecentralsierra.ucanr.edu/Master_Gardeners/Favorite_Gardening_Resources/

You have a great climate and you can use the large variety of plants that don't have heavy water requirements.  

Let me know if you need any other information.  I hope this helps.
Tom

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Tom Alonzo

Expertise

I have been a gardener for 20 years with perennials both growing from seed and from nurseries. I went through the Master Gardener Program from Kansas State University Cooperative Extension Service and I answered questions on the Hotline a few years ago for the Wyandotte County Kansas Extension Service. I have also lived in the Florida, California, Hawaii, Arizona, Texas, Kansas and Missouri and am experienced with a variety of climates, soils and weather conditions.

Experience

I have been growing perennials for over 20 years now. I am self-taught mostly except for a master gardener class. I have experimented with all kinds of perennials including many that are not common to my area. I have read hundreds of books and grown hundreds of varieties of plants and hope to make it a business some day. I have become versed in botanical names and growing conditions and what I don't know off of the top of my head I can usually easily find in my vast array of research material and botanical and horticultural contacts. I especially enjoy experimenting with growing plants out of zone.

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