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In addition to showing you pictures of my new landscaping, I want to talk a little about what changes I made and why. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

Waiting to be planted, here are some of the cacti that will be going into the various yard groupings.
Turned this one sideways so that you could see the cactus the way it will look when planted. We call it "Spike". It's also known as an Argentine Toothpick. The spines are about 6" long! We put it into a cardboard box to get it home from the plant sale, and the spines were going through the box.You'd think that would have warned me.

Stetsonia coryne — This hardy monotypic genus is becoming a popular landscape plant in areas that do not stay below freezing for more than 24 hours. Because of the long spines, it is not recommended for high traffic areas. Its natural habitat is Argentina. The grey-blue stems of this species branch off a main trunk, eventually forming a plant up to 10 ft wide and 26 ft tall. Called the "Argentine toothpick" its spines can exceed 6 inches in length. Intense sunlight and exposure to frost will promote heavier branching and tend to produce a bushy plant as wide as it is tall.

Originally, I planted Spike in the side garden. But, he can get to be 26 feet tall and 10-15 feet wide, and we felt it was too close to the neighbors for safety. So, we moved him to the front yard. But, planting him was an experience I won't forget.

While I was being very careful about putting "Spike" in place, he wasn't thrilled about his new home and dropped out of the hole while I was filling it. He landed on my foot and left two spines in my toes through the shoes. Unfortunately, one of them went all the way through the toe and had to be surgically removed. Everybody in the emergency room found it most funny except for the poor doctor who had to cut it out. X-rays indicate that it has been entirely removed. And I have two stitches to show for my fun 4 hours in the emergency room. Always treat cacti with respect. Especially when they have spines that are 6" long even at this size.

Spike's new grouping. We left him plenty of room to grow while still keeping a cohesive grouping. Between Spike's grouping and the ocotillo grouping is a group of perennial groundcovers (lantana and gazania) that will provide a spot of green and color in the yard.
A lot of perennials went in around the mailbox. They include white african daisy, several different colors of gazanias, and something called hearts and flowers (Apnea). All of these will survive the heat and drought of summer.
One of the gazanias around the mailbox.
 

White African Daisy (osteospermum)

For other African Daisy pictures, see my Pacific NW pictures. (This link will open in a new window for easy return to this page.).

The name on this thing is a mile long. It's a pseudopilocereus azureus. The only part of that I really understand is the azureus. This is a blue cactus. Actually, it looks a lot like a marble cheesecake. It has some interesting marbleing. It may get to 6 feet tall and will add "pillars" around it. This is fairly close to the sidewalk since we can cut extra pillars if it gets too wide.

In front of this, we will put a couple of boulders, some smaller rocks, and the gold barrel cactus cluster. In addition, trailing cacti varieties will be put in the crevices between rocks to add to the grouping.

Side Yard 1
Side Yard 2
Front Yard 1
Front Yard 2
Front Yard 3
Front Yard 4
Back Yard

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