Extreme Sun & Heat

Asked April 11, 2013, 9:43 PM EDT

Do you have any ideas for anything other than cacti and desert plants for areas of extreme heat and sun. I live in zone 9b (Phoenix), but I lose hundreds of $ a year in plants that are suppose to be able to grow here. It seems the primary issues are bad soil (which can be amended), and extreme reflected heat & sun. Ground temps exceed 130 degrees even if the air is 117. High UV (10-11 range.)
Have had success with tropicals in shade, but I do not have enough shade areas.
I'm really tired of desert landscaping.
Thank you for your help.

Maricopa County Arizona

4 Responses

I sympathize with your frustration. Two suggestions:

1) Visit the Phoenix Desert Botanical Garden for inspiration.
2) Call (602) 827-8200 and ask to speak with a Master Gardener for ideas.

The Desert Botanical garden is strictly Desert plants, absolutely nothing else.

Will make the master gardener contact.

Thank you.

Thanks for the reply. I hope the PHX MGs can help. From what you describe, you are very limited ("bad soil...extreme reflected heat & sun...Ground temps exceed 130 degrees") which is why l referred you back to desert landscaping even though you are tired of it.

Perhaps you could install a very tall shade cloth structure which might allow you to grow some other species you are interested in.

Excellent idea. I've purchased two to create a double shade cloth. Am trying to build a structure for it.

At least the tropicals love it in the shade if I give them lots of water; that way I can feel like I'm in Hawaii.