Desert Mountain Times
Desert Mountain Times - People, Plants and Places of Desert Southwest

1st Bird of Paradise tale “doesn’t stand a chance!”

Pennsylvania Bird of Paradise

“Hey, ol‘ buddy! That wimpy looking Bird of Paradise you all grow down in Texas can’t even come close to the ones we grow up here in Pennsylvania! Looky here! Eat your heart out!” [Courtesy photo]



By Dan Bodine



Hee, hee! Tom Fuelmer, and old friend in Pennsylvania, replied to my recent post on Bird of Paradise plants (allegedly) with a photo of the ones they grow there. To give other readers a view of this plant, I’m posting it here (above). Magnificent, no?

He’d mentioned in earlier correspondence couple years or so ago of tall bushes he and his wife had at their home. Wow! I thought. That sure takes the cake compared to the ones I’d posted from our garden here in El Paso! (below right, Mexican Bird of Paradise). Continue reading

Mexican Bird of Paradise and a morphing start-up

Yeah, that’s me, yours truly, at my new potting bench. Putting one of these wild Mexican Bird of Paradise seedlings that come up in my yard each year into a pot to be sold later. New entrepreneur project arose to celebrate Pres. Trump’s election, it is. Now I just need to make sure I’ve got the exact identity of the plants! And how to tell apart when young? Testimony of any self-professed plant expert — such as a genuine Trump supporter — would be taken as de facto expert proof, of course! Just reply to this post at the bottom, anyone with an idea. (DMT photo)


By Dan Bodine



Bush, on left; tree, on right. Both Mexican Birds of Paradise! Can offsprings from a plant take on distinctive different characteristics than its parent — such as what foolish human children have attempted “to get away” with for thousands of years? (Image by Mauro Guanandi)

Prez Trump and his throw-it-to-the-wilds attitude may be setting the standard now for new start-up’s, and you can bet there are millions of us other wanna-be entrepreneurs out there “in the wings,” too — still scratching for cash; awaiting our own “rendezvous with destiny”! Continue reading

Transplanting barrel cactus no ordinary fete

By Dan Bodine


"Uh...You're my friend, right!?"             (Image as on Craig's List ad)

“Uh…You’re my friend, right!?”             (Image as on Craig’s List ad)

Transplanting a fishhook barrel cactus from one yard to another can be far from an ordinary fete! Especially as a senior citizen when you’ve settled into cozy linear thinking!

This cactus was at a home in Santa Teresa, N.M. More than “a little bit” west of El Paso’s Far East side! Continue reading

Setting out asparagus fern purchased 26 years ago

Methusela's long runners, extending in every direction, obviously reduce the amount of light plants on the garden floor below her are able to get daily.

Methusela‘s long runners, extending in every direction, obviously reduce the amount of light that plants on the ground in El Hueco garden below her are able to get daily. Thus, move her! the call became. She needs a better fit. (DMT photos)

Methusela VI


By Dan Bodine


Monday I did it!

Before the season’s first hard freeze arrives, I set out an asparagus fern named Methusela I’ve toted around for the past 26 years – transplanting it every few years into a larger hanging basket pot until she’s become just too large now.

Confronted with this Sunday afternoon — e.g., she’d really prefer to be in an open bed somewhere where she could really grow, wouldn’t she?! — I did it! Continue reading