Plants of the arid southwest survive conditions that commonly defeat other life forms. Yet one of their most important adaptations for withstanding the rigors of drought and extreme weather, long life, is little documented or appreciated. Without great size to distinguish these ancient plants, they are routinely bulldozed for development. With each plant lost, we lose centuries of soil stability, wildlife protection, and a piece of a community we will never replace in our lifetime.

In order to help the rapidly developing communities of the southwest recognize and retain their long-lived native plants, The SummerTree Institute has launched SAVING THE ANCIENTS. This community awareness program is currently focused on the native plants of the Mojave and Colorado Deserts, and is designed to encourage protection and planting of long-lived southwest native plants, while improving the environment for people and wildlife.

When people become aware of the native plants of their area, they are more likely to save or plant them. The SummerTree Institute has created a booklet of Ancient Native Plant Profiles. This 34-page color booklet highlights 14 plants of the Mojave and Colorado Desert regions. Pages are laminated and bound for field durability.

This booklet provides the following:


Photographs for plant identification in the wild and in your yard

Drawings showing detail of leaves, fruit and flowers

Photographs of the plant in dormancy (if applicable)

Photographs for scale next to a 5'9" human silhouette

Plant longevity information

How the plants enrich their home habitats and gardens

Associated wildlife interactions and traditional uses

Price: $20 tax-deductible donation
Plus $2.50 shipping
To order copies of this booklet, click here, or use the convenient PayPal button, below.

Your donation is tax deductible and supports the work of the SummerTree Institute and SAVING THE ANCIENTS.



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