Drought and the garden

The news reports on California’s drought are dire. However, the drought did not happen overnight, we are now in our fourth year of drought. Nevertheless, for years my city, South Pasadena, like many others, did not take a proactive role on water conservation. The lushness of South Pasadena is apparent every time one crosses into the city. Designated […]

Why garden with natives?

Early explorers and settlers were awed by the variety and profusion of wildflowers throughout what would become the state of California.  Hillsides in spring were painted gold, red, yellow, blue and white.  Flowering shrubs added frosty blue and snowy white to the landscape. In the heat of summer, the wonderful smells of soft gray sages […]

Front Parkway (continued)

The front parkway project continues, while I try to figure out exactly what I want. I have tossed around lots of ideas, such as: Striking, architectural succulents. A kind of modern look. Too modern? Dudleyas and juncus – odd combination, succulent and wiry, powdery gray and shiny dark green –  flowing from the front yard […]

It’s planting time and I’m not ready

The only thing that I have been avoiding and neglecting more than my blog is my garden. In the last few days, I have cleaned house, watched one whole season of Breaking Bad on DVD, and more productively, spoken to five high school environmental science classes about the importance of creating habitat in urban areas. […]

Getting Started – Part 3 of 3

So let’s review. There are many ways to convert a traditional lawn-dominated landscape into a sustainable, lively habitat garden. At one extreme there is the clean slate method where everything is removed and one starts out with a clean slate. Advantages are, that if done well, you can have a beautiful, coherent landscape in a […]