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Re: now desert willow

interesting-I may have to see about one of those just for experimental purposes. I have a place by the street that stays hot and dry. Ours soils are very acidic here but sounds as if that wouldn't be a problem with the Chitalpa.


----- Original Message ----- From: <TeichFauna@aol.com>
To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
Sent: Tuesday, October 28, 2008 3:20 PM
Subject: Re: [CHAT] now desert willow

Yes I do. I'm in Fort Bend County, just SW of Houston. We get, on average,
8 inches less rainfall per year than downtown Houston.  Soils  going west
from Houston are more and more alkaline....rather than acidic like downtown Houston and parts going east from there. I found all this out while trying
plant a native landscape...none of the typical  native plants of SE Texas
grow in my area.  Should have known since  we can't grow Azaleas out here
without really serious help with soil additives and amendments....which grow
crazy in Houston itself. I started concentrating on central and south Texas natives. Desert Willow is native to the SW US, including West and Central
Texas.  We are also less humid  here, although more so than San Antonio or
Austin. I found that I had much more success with these plants than with others....however, since we do have more rains than the SW and we are more
humid, I
have also found that there  are some plants that just won't do here.  We
moved from the Mojave desert in California after living in El Paso.....so it
a big change, and I lost a lot of plants....so it hasn't been too easy either
finding that happy  medium.

I would think that Theresa would have more luck with the Desert Willow than
you would, Andrea.  I don't know, but from what I have heard, your area is
pretty much acidic and humid, no?? My Desert Willow, despite surviving, is
thriving.  It has not gotten more than about 8 foot in 10 years  and was
about 2-3 foot to begin with, and although it does bloom, it is very spindly
sparse in branching and foliage.   I did plant it  on a high area that I
raised more, so it never stands in water, and doesn't stay wet when it rains.
don't give it supplimental water at all. This is the same area where I grow many of the succulents, agave, Cacti, and other plants that folks in the SW
area would be familiar with.   I think,  though that I would have had much
success if I had gotten one of the  improved landscape varieties.

Personally if I were to make a recomendation to you, I'd say go with the
Chitalpa.  It is a cross between the Chilopsis (Desert Willow) and the
The Catalpa can take a lot more moisture and humidity than the  Desert
Willow.  Probably be easier to find too.  Here is a link....._San Marcos
Chitalpa 'Pink Dawn'_ (http://www.smgrowers.com/info/chitalpa.asp)
There are a number of  varieties too, this just shows one.

zone 9
Texas Gulf Coast

In a message dated 10/28/2008 5:36:27 AM Central Daylight Time,
andreah@hargray.com writes:

Noreen-so you have one and it's well? You're really humid and get a good bit
of rain right? That might mean I could plant one in a well  drained spot.
What do you think?

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