Louis Raymond experiments in his own gardens like

a mad scientist, searching out plants that most people have

never seen before & figuring out how to make them perform.- The Boston Globe

…Louis Raymond ensures that trees can grow in Brooklyn…

or just about any other place where concrete consumes

the dirt and skyscrapers shield the sunshine.- USA Today

 
 

NEW Trips to Take!

Myrtle's easy when the conditions are right.

 
 
 
 

NEW Plants to Try!

Louis tries to capture the exact words to describe the fleeting but deep pleasures to be found in these Summer-into-Autumn incredibles.

 
 
 
 

New Gardening to Do!

Allergic to bees? You can still have an exciting garden, full of flowers and color and wildlife.

 
 
 
 

Plant Profiles

Today in the Garden of a Lifetime: Klein's Cholla

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Prickly-pear cactus as supermodel: No big-and-juicy padding on this beauty!

 

The stems of Klein's cholla are slender fingers. They have so much rigid internal structure that they remain erect despite getting rid of all possible water weight to become freeze-proof. Instead of deflating into prostrate floppiness like a typical prickly pear, these stems just suck in their cheekbones. Skinny even in Summer, they are positively wraith-like in Winter.

 

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In its native New Mexico, Opuntia kleiniae can grow into a large shrub six feet tall or taller. Probably two or three feet tops in the East even, as here, when growing with perfect drainage: sandy gravel in a deep trough. Pink flowers in Spring lead to small but showy red fruits.

 

Here's how to grow a somewhat less hardy form of prickly pear; all forms of Opuntia can be handled the same way. Opuntia kleiniae is hardy to Zone 5 when provided with sharp drainage and a soil surface of sand or gravel instead of a wood- or planted-based mulch.

 

 
 
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