Nature Photography

Nature Photography: Xeriscapes and a Prickly Pear Cactus Sunrise

Good landscape planning and design is one of those things that a lot of us talk about, and some of us even do it.

But, here’s Martha from Reality-ville: I didn’t plan the design of my yard. I just made it up as I went along. And my forary into water harvesting was motivated more by a desire to save money on the water bill than anything else.

Be that as it may, I do have a xeriscape going out there. And it kinda-sorta follows the notion of dividing one’s yard into xeriscape zones:

  1. The Oasis is the zone that sits closest to the house. This is where you put the plants that really like the water. I have my lantanas in the Oasis. And, for low-tech water harvesters who are schlepping buckets of graywater from the bathtub, this is a good thing. It means that you won’t very have as far to schlep with those heavy buckets.
  2. The Transition Zone is a good place to put plants that need occasional watering. My trailing rosemary falls into this category.
  3. The Arid Zone is a fabulous place for cactus and other native species that can get by on rainwater only. However, there’s nothing that says that you can’t plant “security cactus” right next to your house. A lot of people do this to deter burglars. That’s what this stand of prickly pear cactus is doing…

Nature photography - Prickly pear cactus at sunrise, Tucson, Arizona

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