Southwest Plant of the Month – Blue Ranger – Leucophyllum zygophyllum

Plant Form:  Shrub
Plant Type:  Evergreen
Sunlight:  Sun
Plant Size:  3′ x 3′
Water Usage:  Low
Colors:  Blue, Purple

Physical Description:  Small evergreen shrub with rounded, compact form. Young branches are erect and silvery, drooping and turning grayish-tan with age, and the small, soft wooly leaves are also silvery gray-green which contrasts well with the 1/2″ long bell-shaped, purplish to pale lavender-blue flowers that follow summer  and fall rains.

Care and Maintenance:  Occasional pruning out of older branches helps invigorate a mature plant.  Avoid overwatering/poor drainage.

Gardener’s notes:  Generally smaller than other Leucophyllums. Native to eastern Chihuahuan desert of Mexico. Cultivar “Cimmarron” is somewhat less sensitive to over watering.

Southwest Plant of the Month material courtesy of NMSU ACES –  http://desertblooms.nmsu.edu/plantadvisor/