Ocotillo Plants


Una added on March 26, 2017 | Answered

We bought this house 5 years ago, and there are 5 or 6 ocotillo around the front and back yard. It seems like in the first year they greened up with leaves in the spring. They are no longer doing that. They are on our drip system. I have never fertilized them because I thought they didn't need it. Would love to have them green up, what do I need to do? Thanks so much for any help, Una Loge.

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on March 27, 2017

Ocotillos are a bit unusual because they can survive for long periods and even flower without leaves. Often they will photosynthesize using the green parts of the stem.

Giving them more water can encourage them to leaf out, but it's not guaranteed. The best way is to water them at the base and also the surrounding area, since the roots spread out pretty far around the stem.

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