Plant sales to offer fresh start

Now through April is the time to start digging
2013-03-10T00:00:00Z Plant sales to offer fresh startElena Acoba Special To The Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

Time to get planting. Several plant sales by non-profit organizations can help you find stock for replacing frozen landscape, starting your veggie garden or trying something new.

DESERT SURVIVORS NURSERY

All plants at this native-focused nursery are discounted. The sale this week will feature:

• Giant sedge, a semiaquatic grass with broad leaves. It's good as a riparian or pond plant, says nursery employee Jason Elam.

• Willow leaved groundsel, a 4- to 5-foot shrub with willowlike leaves. Its yellow daisies appear in spring and early summer.

• Bladderpod from the honeysuckle family. The 4- to 5-foot shrub features spring yellow flowers that attract bees and butterflies.

• Sonoran everlasting, a 2-foot semievergreen perennial. Its silvery leaves smell like lemon, and heads of silver-white flowers pop up during the monsoon.

TOHONO CHUL PARK

Anything silver is the featured plant at the park's sale next weekend. That includes varieties of agave, cactus, penstemon, artemisia, Texas ranger and senna, says Lee Mason, the park's general services manager.

"The foliage is silvery colored," Mason says, not the flowers. That provides an interesting contrast when planted next to plants with dark green leaves.

Mason has set up a demonstration plot so that buyers can see how to use silver plants in a landscape.

NATIVE SEEDS/SEARCH

Tomato, chile, pepper, herb and other edible seedlings at the April 6 sale allow growers to catch up on spring veggie gardening.

Native Seeds/SEARCH gives seed stock to Aravaipa Heirlooms nursery, which germinates them into seedlings for the sale.

The plants, which cost $3 to $4, are good for people who don't have the patience to plant from seed, says Vivian MacKinnon, the group's retail shop manager.

"These are varieties that people have trouble with," she says.

The sale is expected to have a large number of Sonoran chiltepin chiles and epazote herbs.

Anything left from the sale will be sold in the retail store.

MASTER GARDEN PLANT SPRING SALE

Plants sold at the April 20 sale are propagated from master gardeners' own stock. That means that sometimes a sale will have a large number of certain types of plants.

That's the case this season. It looks like lots of succulents will be on the shelves, says sale co-organizer Judy Hiner.

They'll include the popular crested Peruvian apple cactus, pointy-leaf Eve's needle, Trichocereus cactus, euphorbia, agave and "Mother of Millions" kalanchoe.

The usual favorites include ground covers, herbs, vines, perennials and blackberries.

IF YOU GO

Desert Survivors Spring Plant Sale

• When: 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday.

• Where: 1020 W. Starr Pass Blvd.

• Information: 791-9309, www.desertsurvivors.org

Tohono Chul Park Spring Plant Sale

• When: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. March 17

• Where: Enter on North Northern Avenue northwest of North Oracle Road and West Ina Road.

• Information: 742-6455, www.tohonochulpark.org

Native Seeds/SEARCH Seedling Sale

• When: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. April 6.

• Where: Retail store at 3061 N. Campbell Ave.

• Information: 622-5561, www.nativeseeds.org

Master Gardeners Spring Plant Sale

• When: 8-11 a.m. April 20.

• Where: Pima County Cooperative Extension, 4210 N. Campbell Ave.

• Information: 626-5161.

Contact Tucson freelance writer Elena Acoba at acoba@dakotacom.net.

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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