A few tropicals in pots can be a fine sendoff to summer. Here about a mile from the ocean, the big-leaved tropicals like colocasia, the “elephant ears,” bide their time until the temperatures start to really feel uncomfortable. By the time we’re whining about the heat in August, they’re in their element, coolly unfurling the [...]
It’s August and I’m craving a summer camp experience. Unfortunately, the summer camp bus left 40 years ago. So up there is my designated summer camp 2013.
I admit accommodations are rustic and no-frills, but a short trip up the ladder rungs turns an ordinary August day into something wildly mildy adventurous. [...]
Today in Los Angeles temperatures downtown hit the 90s, with red-flag fires burning in nearby Ventura and Riverside Counties. Fire season has arrived, hot, heavy, and early, after a disappointing rainfall only 40 percent of average this past winter.
The landscaping at the Lewis Brisbois building, 221 North Figueroa, where I worked today, was [...]
A garden book among the many I’ve read that I’m reminded of almost daily is Pamela Harper’s “Color Echoes.” My synopsis goes like this: The eye is lonely and craves relationships, and will wander around restlessly to seek them out, but is easily satisfied even if you provide only the barest of excuses for associations, [...]
20 percent less water usage this past August compared to August 2011. That wasn’t too terribly painful. The back garden is fairly torn up right now, but that’s all me, Edwina Shovelhands, not a result of any water rationing. The Lobelia tupa did perish under the August sun, just crisped away, but not for lack [...]
August is always a truth-telling time in the life of a garden and a good month to take a snapshot of it. The hoses have been deployed this week to deep water the trees and soak the now bone-dry soil. Most irrigating up to this point has focused on containers and new plantings, but the [...]
Visiting first-rate plant nurseries necessarily involves purchasing plants, or so I’ve always believed — even if the purchaser is thousands of miles from home and has to shove the pots into an already bursting suitcase and then into the cramped overhead compartment of an airplane. Even if the nursery offers the sensible alternative of mail [...]
I find vacations in the Pacific Northwest have a lot in common with Chinese food; after being home for a few days, you’re hungry for another serving of Puget Sound, please. I’m sitting at a table in my garden in Southern California, staring up at a piercingly blue sky, like a child’s crayon drawing of [...]
Lobelia tupa from Chile is blooming for the first time in my garden, thereby making everything right again with the world. Long time coming, Ms. Tupa. The color on the lobelia is deeper than salmon but slightly less intense than tomato red. Pure and unmuddied. Don’t crowd her and give her lots of compost. 4 [...]
Though I’ve been practicing lots of garden math — some addition but mostly subtraction and a little light division — the garden still seems almost unchanged and very familiar this summer, and I haven’t decided yet if that’s necessarily a good thing. The Amicia zygomeris is back, still robust and healthy. Evergreen in a zone [...]