Expanding the Garden Palette for Semi-arid Climate Gardens: Challenges and Problems

Horticulture in Colorado has a history stretching back thousands of years in Mesa Verde and other well documented archeological sites, but our contemporary plantings derive overwhelmingly from “bi-coastal syndrome”—most of the garden palette grown here still derives from plants better adapted to maritime climates of the coasts, or Midwest whence most early settlers of European ancestry migrated. Denver Botanic Gardens ushered in a better adapted horticultural palette, mostly deriving from sister steppe climates in Eurasia and the southern Hemisphere. Panayoti will describe the challenges and successes of this dynamic that other public gardens might emulate.


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