Plant of the Month

/Plant of the Month

Read in depth descriptive articles about plants that grow well in the Santa Fe area. Learn about plant diversity growing around you! More plant of the month articles available here

1 Feb, 2016

FEBRUARY : Arizona cypress ‘Blue Ice’ : Cupressus arizonica var. glabra ‘Blue Ice’

Scientific name: Cupressus arizonica var. glabra ‘Blue Ice’ Common name: Arizona cypress ‘Blue Ice’ Cupressus arizonica var. glabra 'Blue Ice' (Photo: Cristina Salvador) Family: Cupressaceae Article by Susan Bruneni In the winter landscape in Santa Fe, a highlight of the Botanical Garden at Museum Hill is the bluish-gray/silvery foliage of the Arizona cypress ‘Blue Ice’ with [...]

1 Jan, 2016

JANUARY : Ephedra species

Scientific name: Ephedra equisetina Common names: bluestem ephedra, bluestem joint fir Scientific name: Ephedra torreyana Common names: Mormon tea, joint fir Plant Family:  Ephedraceae (joint fir) Article and photos by Janice Tucker Ephedra equisetina (bluestem joint fir) growth habit early fall (Photo: J. Tucker) The Ephedra’s unique and rather austere structure often prompts the [...]

1 Dec, 2015

DECEMBER : Christmas greens : Ilex aquifolium, Viscum album, & Pseudotsuga menziesii

European holly (Ilex aquifolium), family Aquifoliaceae Mistletoe (Viscum album), family Santalaceae Douglas Fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii), family Pinaceae Article by Jeanne Gozigian What all of these “Christmas Greens” have in common is that they are evergreens, retaining their green leaves throughout the seasons, wherever they may grow.  For this reason, they have traditionally been adopted for decorating [...]

1 Nov, 2015

NOVEMBER : Sand Lovegrass : Eragrostis trichodes

Scientific name: Eragrostis trichodes Plant family: Poaceae Article by Susan Bruneni Visitors to Santa Fe Botanical Garden at Museum Hill this time of year are treated to the airy purplish flowers and slender delicate foliage of the sand lovegrass. But this beautiful ornamental perennial bunchgrass is also a hard-working participant in the USDA’s Natural [...]

1 Oct, 2015

OCTOBER : Gambel oak : Quercus gambelii

Scientific name: Quercus gambelii Gambel's oak (Photo: Janice Tucker) Common name: Gambel oak Plant Family:  Fagaceae (Beech) Text and Photos by Janice Tucker New Mexico has wonderful native trees that do very well in the Northern New Mexico climate. These trees thrive in high altitudes and dry conditions, bringing beauty into our landscapes without [...]

1 Sep, 2015

SEPTEMBER : sweet briar rose : Rosa rubiginosa

Scientific Name: Rosa rubiginosa Sweet briar rose flowers (Photo: Janice Tucker) Synonym: Rosa eglanteria Family: Rosaceae Common Name: sweet briar rose or rose ‘Eglantine’ Article by Jeanne Gozigian Gertrude Stein famously said, “A rose is a rose is a rose."  Ah, but the marvelous, beloved, diverse, and prolific Rose family is anything but that [...]

1 Aug, 2015

AUGUST : Fendler’s sundrops : Oenothera hartwegii subsp. fendleri

Scientific name: Oenothera hartwegii subsp. fendleri Oenothera hartwegii subsp. fendleri (Photo by Janice Tucker) Synonym: Calylophus serrulatus  Family: Onagraceae  (Evening Primrose) Common names Fendler’s sundrops, sundrops  Article by Susan Bruneni Sundrops are unique members of the evening primrose family (Onagraceae). They are a few of the more than 145 species that open blooms [...]

1 Jul, 2015

JULY : sulphur flower : Eriogonum umbellatum

Scientific name:  Eriogonum umbellatum Eriogonum umbellatum in mid summer (Photo by Janice Tucker) Common name: sulphur flower Plant Family:  Polygonaceae - buckwheat Text and Photos by Janice Tucker The Eriogonum umbellatum (sulphur flower) may grow low to the ground but it is impossible to ignore. The extroverted, bright yellow or red-orange flowers, swaying [...]

1 Jun, 2015

JUNE : ‘Radiant’ crabapple : Malus × ‘Radiant’

Scientific name:  Malus × ‘Radiant’ Family: Roseaceae Common name:  ‘Radiant’ crabapple Article by Jeanne Gozigian One of the lovely, spring flowering trees in the Goede Family Orchard at the Botanical Garden at Museum Hill is the 'Radiant' crabapple.  Its broad, rounded crown sports greenish purple leaves alongside the deep red buds; as the buds open to [...]

1 May, 2015

MAY : Wooly speedwell : Veronica pectinata

Scientific name: Veronica pectinata Common name: wooly speedwell Family: Plantaginaceae - Plantain Photo by Meredith Yue Article by Susan Bruneni One of the featured selections at this year’s Santa Fe Botanical Garden plant sale is Veronica pectinata, or wooly speedwell. Examples of all plants featured at the sale are growing at Botanical Garden sites, [...]