Attitude Adjustment Time – Not Weeds – Wildflowers!

In Arizona, we live in a community that encourages low water use desert plantings. This means gravel yards instead of grass. Landscaping is done with cactus, succulents and plants that don’t use much water. Residents are also expected to keep weeds under control.

This past spring, the vacant house and lot next door to us quickly become overgrown with a carpet of weeds. Most of these weeds had tiny flowers, so the overall effect was greenly messy. As the Arizona sun got high and hot, the weeds started to die, and the yard started to look brownly messy.

I was less than impressed with living next door to a weed seed factory… but my attitude changed when I photographed the plants with my macro lens! Suddenly they were wild flowers!

Crypthantha (If you hover over each photo, you can read the caption. Click on the photo to see the full size version.)

A weed is a plant that has mastered every survival skill except for learning how to grow in rows.
– Doug Larson –

Common Fiddleneck

Crabgrass can grow on bowling balls in airless rooms, and there is no known way to kill it that does not involve nuclear weapons.
– Dave Barry –


Plant and your spouse plants with you; weed and you weed alone.
– Author Unknown –

One person’s weed is another person’s wildflower.
– Susan Wittig Albert –


So many weeds, so little Thyme.
– Author Unknown –

California Poppy – there was only one of these plants in the weed patch, but the bright yellow flowers really stood out!

It’s a wildflower if you want it and a weed if you don’t.
– Author Unknown –

Lupin – these are quite common roadside flowers in the spring, but they were few and far between in the weed patch.

Same Flowers, Other Filters

How is your ‘Garden of Weedin’ doing this summer?

17 thoughts on “Attitude Adjustment Time – Not Weeds – Wildflowers!

  1. Most weeds are just misunderstood (unwanted) wildflowers. Our roadside “gardens” are absolutely gorgeous, yet you see none of those “flowers” in anyone’s “cultivated” gardens. So sad.

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    1. Some of those ‘weeds’ are just so prolific! If they get into the garden they just take over. Maybe that is why we try to banish them.


      1. Last year we had a massive invasion of fleabane – the farmers hate it (each plant can have as many as 10,000 seeds and they can travel for miles). We were pulling it out of every corner of the property (I had some this year, too; a lot of people didn’t know what it was, so didn’t mow it down!) I’m sometimes amazed at what I find growing “wild” in the forest – plants that are sold in garden centres for ridiculous sums of money. I guess “one woman’s weed is another woman’s prized plant”!

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      1. For years, long before my boss and I left the Firm and went out on our own, I did a “Thought for the Day” – many of those years was before we had internet; we had something called Pine E-mail (just for use in the office) so I would collect quotes from newspapers, magazines and I had many perpetual calendars with daily quotes in them. I loved doing a quote every day – I still stick one in my blog posts occasionally.

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    1. Anything that will grow in Arizona should be treasured! The homeowners association, however, has rules about unruliness – but I can see their point. Many of us are only there in the winter, but the full time residents have to put up with our ‘plant choices’ full time. Even the lovely Lupins are mostly dead sticks for much of the year.

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    1. I’m hoping we have a normal fall in Alberta this year so that I can take photos of the leaves changing colours. Last year we had a late September snow. The leaves froze, turned brown, and fell to the ground.


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