Southwest Gardening

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When you think about the Southwestern US, you think about desert, cactus and tumbleweeds. However, with a little free time and a lot of love, you can transfer a portion of your living area into your private hanging garden. Because here we enjoy abundant brilliant sun light and our winter rarely dips under freezing, you can even grow your tropic plants here.

I have started to build my own little hanging garden a couple years back. Ever since leaving Hawaii, I have had this nostalgia feeling about a lot of tropic plants, their unique fragrance and their exotic beauty often haunted me. Because of the harsh sun and dry air here, I had never thought it is possible to grown tropical plants here. Until one day, I stopped by Lowe's and found one of the post-flowering orchids on sale. It looked rather small and sad. Out of a feeling of compassion, I bought it and took it home, never really expecting it would survive. I repotted as soon as I get home. For a whole year, I kept watering it regularly. It wasn't until later on that year, I find new leaves emerged from the center. I was bewildered and soon overcome with joy when I noticed a little stalk starting to form. My moth orchid soon flowered. It was pure white with a touch of gold on the center. Though it does not offer any fragrance, I was really amazed at its beautiful flowers. They started to open early in Spring, but it wasn't until mid way in the summer the flowers slowly dries up and fell off. Before I lost any of the flowers, a new stalk has already emerged. No wonder why my visitors often thought it was a fake flower I kept.

Since then, my flower collection consisted not only of the flowers that I bought totally out of compassion, though I still do it quite often, I started to purchase some more exotic plants from online stores. Rare, exotic plants such as clivia, Michelia alba, various types of jasmine, citrus, peony, and various types of orchids currently share my home. So far, I have been very lucky to be blessed with a green thumb, for the most of the part.


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