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a garden visit with bixbybotanicals

It all started with a very sweet and generous offer of some foliage for vases. Via bixbybotanicals Instagram, I learned that his Leucadendron ‘Wilson’s Wonder’ was in full winter dress, and he was willing to share some of the largesse with anyone in Long Beach. The South African conebushes are prized for their long vase […]

a succulent garden in February

On the way to picking up a family member’s weekly box at the CSA Growing Experience in North Long Beach last week, I took the opportunity to drive slowly through the surrounding neighborhood of mostly Spanish-style homes. It was drizzling again, still a charming novelty after years of drought. Because of that drought, there’s very […]

chasing agaves

Last Saturday, while millions marched their way into the history books, I was driving south to San Diego to meet agave expert Greg Starr. I had been looking forward to this 2-hour road trip for some time, as a beacon in an otherwise fairly bleak January. Family medical issues against the chaotic national backdrop […]

Bloom Day November 2016

Daylight Saving Time and the electoral college. I think we can agree that these are two areas worthy of further study. May Dreams Gardens collects Bloom Day reports the 15th of every month. My excuse for posting on the 16th? The DST ate my report. I don’t know how you all manage with these shortened […]

Wednesday vignette 11/2/16

Ever wonder what Huntington Botanical Garden employees display on their file cabinets?

Luisa Serrano (Crow & Raven) and I got a tiny glimpse when we visited the Huntington in early October.

The rest of these photos come from that visit as well, mostly the desert conservatory and then the new entrance garden, […]

Bloom Day October 2016

This October the garden has already turned its back on summer, and all but the grasses have been cut back. I’m curious to find out how long the summer grasses can be supporting players to the winter-blooming aloes before the grasses are cut back in late winter. (Of course, if we get rain, the grasses […]

Wednesday Vignette 9/21/16

The aeoniums are losing that shriveled and squinty, “Anybody seen my sunglasses?” look they acquire over summer, plumping up again for their favorite season that’s just ahead.

An old post from January 2013 “comparative aeoniums” shows them at their happiest. (Anna at Flutter & Hum collects Wednesday Vignettes.)

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reprising a 2010 visit to the Ruth Bancroft Garden

(Ms. Bancroft is celebrating her 108th birthday this month — yes, that’s not a typo — and we’re all awaiting the upcoming launch later this fall of the book chronicling the making of her garden The Bold Dry Garden.)

If you have an Internet connection and a love of plants, you probably also have many […]

at the Inter-City CSSA Show August 2016

The funny thing about hard-core succulent shows is there’s often non-succulent treasures on the sales tables too.

On arrival, I made a quick circuit around the tables and immediately became fixated on these decidedly non-succulent leaves.

And the mottling on these stems. No name tag, no price.

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31st Annual Inter-City Cactus Show & Sale

31st Annual Inter-City Cactus and Succulent Show and Sale The LA County Arboretum in Ayres Hall 301 North Baldwin Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007 Saturday, August 13, 2016, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM Sunday, August 14, 2016, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM

By a bit of trickery with angles, the stunning bloom of Urginea […]