There are beautiful flowers, plants, and trees in or around Chapala and Ajijic. These are wonderful eye candy and many are perfumed, too. In contrast to what most people think that there are no seasons in Mexico, there are, but not the same seasons you would see north of the border, especially in the northern US and all of Canada.
(Click on the picture to the right for a video about the flowers and plants of Ajijic.)
There are different plants and trees that come into bloom at different times of the year. In the springtime, it's nice. There are the nice yellow primavera trees and the lavender jacarandas for perfect Easter colors. There is also a soft apple blossom pink variation of the primavera. These trees are filled with flowers. My favorite plant is the bougainvillea, with soft, fluffy pink and bright magenta flowers. There are other different flowers and succulents like blue cacti.
There are also white trees called the Kapok or Ceiba tree,. It is a Mayan tree with spiritual and medicinal properties. When this tree is young, its color is like the inside of an avocado, but it has thorns. The flowers are orchid-like. When these kapok trees get to a certain age of seven years or more, that's when the seed is in its full reproduction stage and you get this white puff –ball which explodes, spraying seeds around.
The mountains in the summer become this amazing brilliant green and look like "big clumps of broccoli". After the rains, the trees in the mountains appear to sparkle. There are also yellow blossoms in the mountains.
In the fall, along the highways and roads, there are golden rods and flowers that are indigenous here in Chapala like “brown-eyed” susies and marigolds.
I come from a family of gardeners, so the amazing colors and smells of the flowers, plants, and trees in Chapala and Ajijic are a huge attraction for me. We have transferred our property with grass, a hedge and two big palm trees, to a Shangra-la Sanctuary in the front and back areas.
There is a gardening club, but unfortunately, I don't have the time to join it. How do you make it happen? Find a good gardener or go to a good nursery, which there are a lot of around Chapala and Ajijic, and explore until you find people who are truly knowledgeable. What we've learned is you must ask people who are knowledgeable about what season the plants are in bloom and how they survive. For example, will the plant grow in shade or sun; dry soil or a moister type of soil?
If the plant doesn't grow and dies in a part of your yard, the next time you try to plant it, don't put it in the same place again, because it doesn't mean that the plant won't grow elsewhere. If you leave a plant in a pot and let it settle in with the light, wind, and temperature, you'll get an idea of whether it'll be successful in an area of your yard instead of removing the plant from the pot and plucking it into the ground. This technique seems to work quite well.
There is no frost and extreme heat so there are a lot of people who do vegetable gardening successfully. One of our customers turned her whole garden into a vegetable garden and has kale and all kinds of vegetables.