High Country Gardens has been providing beautiful plants for the waterwise garden and beyond for 20 years. At High Country Gardens we offer plants, products and information that support long-term ecological balance and builds and sustains the love of gardening for generations to come. Our mission is to improve the earth one garden at a time. The High Country Gardens catalog was first offered in 1993. It began as an offshoot of Santa Fe Greenhouses, a retail nursery company in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Our website was one of the earliest online stores for mail order plants and has been in operation since 2000. At High Country Gardens, we have embraced the idea of how to make gardening a partnership with nature, instead of a battle against it. We have developed a plant palate that will thrive in western gardens with little intervention on our part. This allows you to adopt a more relaxed style of gardening and doesn’t require your constant efforts to overcome the natural world.

Company details

PO Box 22398 , Santa Fe , New Mexico 87502 USA

Locations Served

Business Type:
Industry Type:
Agriculture - Horticulture
Market Focus:
Nationally (across the country)


David Salman - The Founder

David Salman, Founder & Chief Horticulturist at High Country Gardens has spent over 26 years in pursuit of better plants for eco-friendly landscapes. He is a recognized expert in the field of waterwise gardening and xeriscaping and a sought-after speaker on these subjects throughout the United States.

David is a distinguished recipient of the AMERICAN HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY 2008 Great American Gardeners Award and writes the award-winning High Country Gardens catalog which has won 4 silver awards and 1 gold award for Best Gardening Catalog by Catalog Age magazine. He has written two in-house publications Waterwise Garden Care and Spectacular Seasons of Color, and has a series of planting and informational videos.

David writes The Xeric Gardener, a blog with gardening news & tips for the waterwise gardener and has written numerous articles for Fine Gardening, American Gardener and Horticulture magazines.


A native New Mexican, David Salman opened Santa Fe Greenhouses in 1984. It was his first retail store and he set out to transform western gardening by cultivating and growing beautiful blooming perennials, native & ornamental grasses and unique cacti & succulents. These waterwise xeric plants attracted a loyal fan base and David changed the face of western gardening from rocks and cactus to lush, blooming eco-friendly garden habitats.

As his retail operation grew, David realized that many of his customers were driving to Santa Fe from other states, as his unique plants thrived in moderate to extreme climates and altitudes. Being waterwise perennials, they  were a garden value saving customers both money and time.


With the demand for his plants extending far beyond northern New Mexico, in 1993 David startedHigh Country Gardens, the mail-order division of Santa Fe Greenhouses. A few years later his wife Ava joined the company. David focused on product development and Ava spearheaded the marketing and e-commerce operations. With the High Country Gardens catalog and website, the Salman's not only pioneered mail-order gardening, but have given hundreds of thousands of customers across the country eco-friendly landscapes that come back more beautifully year after year.

In late 2012, the Salman family made the difficult decision to close their garden centers and sell the High Country Gardens division. In looking for a new partner, it was critical to the Salman’s that they find a company that shared their passion for high-quality products while having a reputation for nothing but the best customer service with a real focus on providing the information and support that gardeners have come to expect from High Country. They found that partner in American Meadows, a long-standing leader in mail order gardening. The Salman’s look forward to working with American Meadows for years to come and continuing to build upon the High Country legacy. David will continue as Chief Horticulturist with a focus on continuing to develop unique and award-winning plant varieties.


David Salman has spent years perfecting his growing methods for the wide variety of new and unusual garden-tested perennials, grasses and shrubs that ship from High Country Gardens. David will continue to propagate High Country’s proprietary products in his Santa Fe greenhouses. Common varieties are be sourced from trusted growers all over the West and orders ship from a partner in Denver, due to their central location and extensive greenhouse facilities. Our custom-designed mailing materials ensure High Country Gardens' plants are safe and healthy when they arrive ready for your garden.

2010 marks High Country Gardens first plant patent, Bouteloua gracilis 'Blonde Ambition' PPAF (Blonde Ambition Blue Grama Grass) was discovered and introduced by High Country Gardens' founder and chief horticulturist, David Salman and was the 2011 Plant Select winner. 'Blonde Ambition' is native to 26 states and is expected to perform well across the country, particularly in hardiness zones 4-9