Linda Strader

Linda Strader

Linda Strader lives in Southern Arizona and starting writing professionally in 2009. She writes for several online magazines and newspapers on desert gardening, landscape design and southwest desert plants. She is currently teaching classes for her community in the care of desert plants. She has 30 years of experience in desert gardening, plants and landscape design.
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Bachelor of Landscape Architecture; University of Arizona, 1990; Master in Planning; University of Arizona 1994, Registered Landscape Architect and Certified Arborist


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Displaying Results 1 - 63 (of 63) for All Content
  • The Challenges Women Still Face Today in the Workplace
    As a wildland firefighter during the 1970's to early 1980's, I faced not only dangerous fires, but discrimination from the men on my crew. When researching my memoir, I discovered that over 30 years later, nothing has changed.
  • Planning and implementing landscape design components
    Although the fun part of landscape design is often the plantings; the reality is many components should be installed prior to digging any holes.
  • Making the most of your vegetable garden
    If you live in a warm climate, your vegetable garden can be in production all year. Although a cold climate prevents gardening in the dead of winter, timing plantings in early fall and spring will allow you to make the most of your garden.
  • Considerations before you start buying landscape plants
    We are probably all guilty of buying plants that die or just sit there and do nothing. It's easy to avoid when you understand the basics of plant selection.
  • Landscape design ideas for your backyard
    Landscape design goes beyond plants; think outdoor rooms, places for pets and edible landscaping.
  • Landscape plants with winter interest
    During the dead of winter it's hard to think about gardening. However, this is the best time to decide where your landscape design is lacking, and what changes to plan for in the spring.
  • Do Trees Have Stress?
    If trees could talk, they would tell us all about the stresses they endure. Many times their stress is something we do inadvertantly. Learn the symptoms of stress and how to avoid or alleviate the problem before it's too late.
  • Creative ways to recycle your Christmas tree
    Don't relegate your tree to the landfill! While buying a living tree is one way to avoid the problem, if you do opt for a cut tree, then choose an environmentally friendly way to dispose of it after the holidays.
  • Plant a living fence with style
    Who says your property line must have a fence to show what is yours? Using plants to suggest a property line is far more interesting, and actually maintains a feeling of openness you can't get from a fence.
  • First Person: Still Seeking That Elusive Job
    After years of unemployment, I finally decided I had to find alternative sources of income.
  • Composting with Earthworms: Make Your Own Worm Bin
    Most gardeners know compost is great for their gardens; and it is! Many also know the benefits of having earthworms appear in the garden. What you might not realize is how much your other plants can benefits from earthworm castings.
  • Where to find free landscape design ideas
    Whether you are looking to make a few changes to your landscaping or thinking about a whole new approach, there are plenty of free resources for design ideas.
  • Ideas for terraced landscapes
    Terracing provides opportunities for planting and creating outdoor living areas.
  • 2013 garden design ideas from a landscape architect and arborist
    At the end of a long summer maybe you've decided your landscaping is just taking up too much precious time, or you just didn't get that vegetable garden going like you planned. Here are some options to consider for next year.
  • Organic vs. inorganic mulch: What's right for your landscape?
    Mulching does more than make your yard look neat. Organic mulches provide necessary nutrients, and inorganic mulches add decorative touches.
  • 5 tough houseplants for people with brown thumbs
    The majority of people who think they have brown thumbs when it comes to houseplants probably are being too kind to their plants. Start with a tough plant, place in the correct lighting, and don't over-water.
  • How to Choose the Best Potting Soil
    The term potting soil is deceptive. Many potting soils do not have any soil, nor are they meant to go into pots! It pays to know what you are purchasing before you plant.
  • Selecting the Right Vine for Your Landscaping
    Vines have many uses. You can hide an ugly fence, or create an arbor covered with flowers. Picking the right plant is the first step to success.
  • Controlling Birds in Your Vegetable Garden
    Birds are very persistent when it comes to raiding your garden. With all the gadgets and suggestions for bird control it's hard to know what to do. Not all methods work for everyone.
  • Protecting Your Garden from Ground Squirrels
    Ground squirrels are one of the most challenging critters to keep out of your garden. They climb, dig and burrow with the utmost persistence. Building the right fence is the only way to keep them out.
  • The Correct Way to Plant Your New Tree
    If your tree planting technique dates back to the 1970's, it is time to revisit.
  • Diagnosing Common Plant Problems
    If your landscape plants are looking a little sick these days, you might be part of the problem. Simple solutions for many common plant ills may be as simple as buying the right plant in the first place.
  • Do Landscape Plants Need Regular Fertilizing?
    Fertilizer myths abound. The fact is, a happy plant exhibiting no symptoms does not need fertilizing. If the plant is not doing well, check for other problems before feeding.
  • Tree Pruning Dos and Don'ts
    Assessing your trees is the first step to determining whether or not you should try and prune yourself, or hire a professional.
  • Ways to Control Weeds Naturally
    As spring approaches, so does the time to start tackling spring weeds. Forgo toxic weed killers and try these alternatives. Mother Earth will thank you.
  • What is Sustainable Landscaping?
    Sustainable landscaping is simply landscaping that is low maintenance, low water use, and environmentally friendly. Converting your yard to a sustainable one is not as daunting as you might think.
  • Time to Plan Your Spring Garden
    It's dead winter for much of the country, but that doesn't mean you should put off buying garden seeds. New seed catalogs are out, and for best selection consider buying sooner rather than later.
  • Protecting Plants from Freezing
    If you live in an area where hard freezes are not common, and you want to protect plants not used to low temperatures, following these suggestions will help your plants get through an unusual cold spell.
  • Successful Cactus Growing in Desert Landscaping
    If you feel like you have a brown thumb when it comes to growing cactus, chances are you are taking too good care of them. Cactus is easy to grow, provided you understand what they do and don't need.
  • How to design a desert succulent garden
    Cactus gardens are very popular in desert areas for good reasons -- they have low water and maintenance requirements. However, the same can be said for succulents. A succulent garden is a great alternative to a cactus garden.
  • Desert Landscaping with Colorful and Dramatic Cactus
    When choosing plants for desert landscaping, include cactus as part of your selection. Cactus provide interest to landscape design, and use little water to no water. Look for varieties offering colorful spines and flowers for the greatest effect.
  • Winter Care for Your Desert Cactus
    Cactus often die for several reasons. We either take too good care of them, or pick species that can take the hot summers, but not cold winters. Selecting the right plant ensures success with cactus.
  • Hot and Dry Climate Shrub Choices for Screening
    If you are looking to add shrubs for screening to your landscaping, but worry about increasing outdoor water use, these tough, but attractive plants give you the screening you want, but don't need a lot of irrigation or maintenance.
  • Guide to Creating a Native Landscape in Your Desert Garden
    The desert heat is finally waning, so now is the perfect time to consider adding native landscape plants to your yard. Here are basic guidelines for getting started.
  • Decorating Your Home with Crafts Made from Desert Plants
    If you live in the desert southwest, why not decorate your home with natural materials with desert origin? You can be proud of your creations and how they fit with a southwestern themed home.
  • Screening Options for Desert Landscaping
    Using plants to make privacy screens or hide unattractive views are aesthetically pleasing, but take many years to mature. Using a combination of fences, walls and natural materials can provide either temporary or permanent screening.
  • Adding Shade to Desert Landscaping: Beyond Trees
    Certainly living in the desert makes one appreciate shade of all kinds, and trees offer the most aesthetic way of bringing shade into your landscaping. While waiting for trees to mature, building shade will have you enjoying your back yard in no time.
  • How to select locations and materials for paths and walkways around your home
    Paths and walkways are an important component for landscape designs that work. Once you decide on the purpose of the walkway, you are free to experiment with a surface treatment appropriate for the use.
  • Adding whimsy is a fun way to accessorize your backyard landscaping
    If you love whimsy, but are afraid of ending up with clutter, here are ways to experiment with the art of whimsical gardens without being tacky.
  • Setting Up Your Own Composting System
    Why throw out perfectly good composting materials when you can enrich your soil instead? You can skip the expensive fertilizer, and reduce the amount of trash you set out at the curb.
  • Outdoor containers without plants: Decorate your patio
    Container plants take a lot of fuss, so if you still want the color and design of pots outdoors, without the work, use your imagination for making those pots work without live plants.
  • Create your own desert butterfly garden
    There are nearly 250 species of butterflies in the desert Southwest. A butterfly garden with a wide variety of plants to attract both butterflies and caterpillars, will bring a new appreciation of these colorful insects.
  • Fall in the Desert Means Time to Plant Your Garden
    With cooler temperatures on the way, fall is a perfect time to start the next vegetable season. You can also add to your herb garden, as many herbs prefer the cooler weather and shorter days.
  • Create Your Own Decorative Stepping Stones
    Stepping stones can add charm to your paths, but these colorful designs are not meant to walk on, they are meant to add fun and whimsical features. The materials list is basic; the decorations are where you can get creative.
  • Outdoor Seating Ideas Beyond the Traditional
    If you are tired of bringing out the lawn chairs for guests, and are up to make some patio and back yard improvements, consider optional seating that will bring more enjoyment to your outdoor spaces.
  • Making the Most of Color in Your Backyard
    When landscaping your yard, you probably plan on including flowering plants to add color. While this is a good idea, why not go a bit further and really bring color to the outdoors?
  • Herbs and perennials for fall desert gardens
    There are many herbs and perennials preferring fall planting. With fall approaching, now is the time to plant an herb bed to flavor winter soups to come.
  • Add a New Dimension to Your Backyard Using the Lure of Fire
    Adding a firepit to your backyard brings back the joy and pleasure of sitting around a campfire.
  • Garden Helpers Bring the Fun Back to Gardening
    If your love of gardening is getting harder either because you aren't quite as young as you used to be, or have other physical limitations, garden helpers are a great way to help you continue your hobby and make gardening fun again.
  • Desert wildflowers for fall planting and spring flower show
    In the desert, fall is the second planting season, and the best time to plant wildflowers for spring blooms. Here's how to prepare a planting area, and seed options to get you started.
  • Why Is My New Tree Not Thriving?
    If your new tree is just sitting there and not doing a thing, there are a number of problems you can assess on your own.
  • Selecting and planting the right tree for your landscaping
    Picking the right tree, right planting spot, and planting correctly will ensure your new tree will bring you pleasure and enjoyment for many years to come.
  • Hiking Trails Near Tucson Without the Crowds
    Hiking in the Tucson area usually means heading to Mt. Lemmon or Mt. Wrightson in the Santa Rita Mountains. These two trail options are peaceful options to the popular routes.
  • Planting a Desert Fragrance Garden
    Many people love to bring color to their landscaping, so why not add another level of pleasure to your desert garden? Adding fragrant plants make your yard even more enjoyable.
  • Desert Landscaping Using Landscape Glass
    Landscape glass is a new addition to the realm of landscaping gravel and rock. Learn how to use this new and colorful ground cover treatment to make your neighbors envious.
  • How to Harvest Rainwater for Desert Landscaping
    Harvesting rain water and using drought tolerant desert native plants is a water saving way to landscape your yard. It's not as hard as it sounds; just create gathering places for rain water to provide supplemental water for plants.
  • Flowering Shrubs for Desert Landscaping
    Using shrubs with purple flowers in desert landscaping complements the colors of the desert, making this the color of choice in many landscape designs.
  • Desert Landscaping Ideas for West Exposures
    If you are new to the desert, and a plant lover, you are probably quite frustrated by the challenges presented living in a hot, dry climate. Throw in below freezing temperatures during the winter, and the challenge gets even tougher.
  • Do I Need to Stake My New Tree?
    Staking trees is not always necessary or warranted. Before you automatically assume your tree needs staking, there are a few things you need to know.
  • Fast Growing Trees for the Desert
    Want fast shade in your desert back yard? Selecting the right species will have you enjoying shade sooner.
  • Cantaloupe Problems Demystified
    Cantaloupes are a delicious addition to any garden. If you have healthy plants but no fruit, usually all you need is patience.
  • How to Propagate Your Own Prickly Pear or Cholla Cactus
    Grow your own cactus from cuttings is easy once you know how to start.
  • Unusual Fruit Trees for Warm Climates
    Standard fruit trees are difficult to grow in climates where there are not enough chilly nights to encourage fruit production. However, there are some warm climate fruit trees that produce unusual, but tasty fruit.

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