For old hands or inexperienced newcomers, A Desert Gardener's Companion is the essential reference for creating and maintaining a bountiful and environmentally sensitive Southwestern gardens. Master Gardener Kim Nelson provides a wealth of information in an easy-to-use seasonal format, covering what to do week-by-week in the desert climates of Southern California, Arizona, southern Nevada, southern New Mexico, and West Texas. Nelson covers everything from planting agave americana to mulching melons to adding zinc chelates to desert soils: one hundred sixty specific topics in all. Delightful drawings by noted nature artist Paul Mirocha demonstrate proper planting and pruning techniques, suggest complimentary landscape groupings, and illustrate specific low water-use plants. No other single volume provides as much useful advice about selecting, planting, and caring for such a wide variety of plants and gardens as Nelson packs into A Desert Gardener's Companion. Her informative and entertaining prose reflects her years of successful, hands-on gardening experience in both Southern California and Arizona and her wealth of knowledge gained as chair of the Plant Clinic at the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension in Tucson.