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“The first rule of sustainability is to align with natural forces, or at least not try to defy them.”– Paul Hawken

These are a few of my favorite places for plants, supplies, and staff members who are knowledgeable about drought tolerant and native plants:

Drought Tolerant and Native Plants

Santa Ana Native Plant Nursery is a wholesale nursery located on Santa Ana Pueblo in Bernalillo. It supplies native and drought tolerant plants to local retail nurseries and landscape businesses. The staff is very knowledgeable about the habits and uses of native plants. Call for an appointment and you can take a tour of available plants.

Plants of the Southwest, located in Albuquerque’s North Valley, supplies native and drought tolerant plants and a wide variety of seeds. Staff is very knowledgeable. Their catalog of available seeds is also a valuable resource for plant descriptions and growing conditions.

Albuquerque Water Gardens and Nursery is also located in Albuquerque’s North Valley. Albuquerque Water Gardens offers not only native and drought tolerant plants, but should you be fortunate enough to have a pond or rain garden you can find water loving plants here too. Staff is helpful and very knowledgeable. Take a stroll through the grounds to see native plants growing.

High Country Gardens is located in Santa Fe. Plants are available by mail. The website offers a wealth of information on drought tolerant plants, individually and in planned groups. The photos are invaluable to help you envision color combinations. 

Waterwise Gardening LLC was founded by David and Ana Salman. During his lifetime David focused on developing and improving drought tolerant and cold hardy plants. These are available through the High Country Gardens retail catalog and at in-person sales in Santa Fe several times a year. 

Rehms Nursery is convenient to downtown Albuquerque. Rehms offers a wide variety of native, drought tolerant plants as well as houseplants and gardening supplies. Staff is helpful and knowledgeable. Tool sharpening also available.

Jericho Nursery is also located in Albuquerque’s North Valley. Jericho has a wide selection of native and non-native plants, along with a wide selection of pots and beautiful garden decorations.

Osuna Nursery, also located in the North Valley, is a large gardening center with a large variety of native and non-native plants. Ask to be directed to the area for native and drought tolerant plants. Osuna also carries a lot of decorative pots and lawn furniture.

Jackalope, with locations in Albuquerque and Santa Fe, Jackalope has a small number of drought tolerant and native plants, and a huge number of decorative pots and yard art. Sometimes successful gardening in the desert means using an assortment of colorful planters. An assortment of colors and shapes can transform your outdoor space.

Local Information Sources

Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority provides a wealth of information on waterwise gardening and plant choices. The links below also give information on using mulch as a groundcover and on choosing turf grasses.


Office of the State Engineer

New Mexico Master Gardeners
Albuquerque area 
Sandoval county
Valencia county

New Mexico Cooperative Extension Service
There is an extension service office for each county. The Home and Garden Program includes information on a multitude of subjects. You’ll be happy to find that the experts at NMSU have already researched the answers to many of your questions.

The information below is specific to New Mexico. Below are links to different topics:

•    Season Extension
•    Irrigation Management
•    Drought Resources 
•    Urban / Small Farm Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
•    Bernalillo County Extension Master Composter Program
•    Desert Blooms
•    Southwest Yard & Garden Columns
•    Melon Patch Columns
•    Low Water-Use Landscape Plants for the Southwest
•    Chile Pepper Institute
•    Plant Diagnostic Clinic
•    Soil, Water, and Agricultural Testing
•    New Mexico Master Gardeners
•    Pesticide Safety Education Program

Albuquerque Backyard Refuge Program
Once you’ve gotten started, you may see that in having a space with native and drought tolerant plants, you have also created habitat for many different critters (including native bees and beneficial insects, butterflies, birds) that contribute to the health of your landscape. Whether in the city or suburbs, your yard can contribute to providing habitat for disappearing native species. The website also links to a plant list for the Albuquerque area.

The Nature Conservancy
Check out other programs in New Mexico and look at the information on climate ready trees.


Desert and Native Plant gardens to visit in Albuquerque and Rio Rancho

If you have other favorites, please let me know!

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