The Native Plant Demonstration Gardens along the Tule River Parkway reveal the benefit of adding pockets of color into established gardens. As the gardens progress through the year, newly planted colorful blooms add interest to the structure of the gardens. This week’s featured plant is Desert Marigold. This sun-loving wildflower is native to western North America. Its daisy-like flowers form impressive mounds of nearly solid yellow. The long-lasting, bright-yellow flowers rise on nearly leafless stems above the mounds of woolly, gray foliage. The flowers, which occur sporadically over a long bloom period, turn papery with age. Desert Marigold grows quickly, is somewhat short-lived as a perennial and readily re-seeds itself if conditions are right. In the garden give it fast drainage. Water weekly once established and use a mulch of surface rocks. Organic mulch or fertilizer shorten its life. Trimming back the spent flower stems will create a neat appearance and encourage additional flowers. Desert Marigold grows to 1.6 feet tall and 1 foot wide. Consider planting a group of three or more for an impressive show of yellow flowers. With Desert Marigold’s consistent fast growth in warm months, a gardener who prefers a very neat appearance or has limited space could remove this wildflower each fall and replant in the spring. Desert Marigolds supports native bees and are deer resistant.
The following are just five of the plants which you can see blooming in a quarter mile walk along the Tule River Parkway between Jaye Street and Parkway Drive.
1. Desert Marigold (Baileya multiradiata)
2. Santa Cruz Island Buckwheat (Eriogonum arborescens)
3. California Buckwheat (Eriogonum faciculatum)
4. Bush Monkeyflower (Diplacus aurantiacus)
5. Creeping Black Sage (Salvia mellifera repens)
Desert Marigold and many other California native plants available at Luis’ Nursery 139 S Mariposa Ave, Visalia, Quercus Landscape Design in Springville https://quercuslandscapedesign.com/availability, and Alta Vista Nursery in Three Rivers which is open by appointment 559 799 7438. More information on this plant can be found at calscape.org by searching for the plant by name. Each of the Native Plant Demonstration Gardens is featured on the website tuleriverparkwayassociation.org
The Tule River Parkway is a City of Porterville public park which features a three-mile paved walking and bicycle path. The gardens were planted and maintained by volunteers with project management by the Tule River Parkway Association. We have three volunteer garden days each month. Follow Tule River Parkway Association on Facebook for announcements. July garden events are dependent on weather if interested contact Cathy Capone at 559 361 9164. The public is encouraged to explore the gardens to learn more about the featured plants and the project. For More information contact TRPA at firstname.lastname@example.org