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what am I missing?

August 2013

I’m happy with the garden this summer, and there’s not much I would change, other than doubling its size if I could. And if I could, then I’d find a spot again for Persicaria amplexicaulis. It loves the stiff clay soil here. (I’ve been thinking about that clay soil a […]

ghosts of gardens past

Cleaning out old photo albums releases lots of ghosts of gardens past. Do I feel guilty and as greedy as Scrooge over all the plants that have come and gone? Not a bit. I do notice that I’ve become more of a climate realist, following the rainfall patterns, with less emphasis on masses of summer-blooming […]

fall-blooming salvias and where to find some

I’ve been trying to scale the garden down, which means there will be no shed-sized, fall-blooming salvias this year like…

Salvia involucrata, Mendocino Coast Botanical Garden, the rosebud sage. Some of the salvias like a bit more moisture than I’m doling out lately, and this one would fall into that group.

The bog […]

Bloom Day April 2011

Southern California, a mile from the ocean, zone 10, spring a couple months ahead of most of the country.

With the grasses joining the frothy euphorbias in bloom, there’s now a supercharged atmosphere that animates the garden. I love it when plants start to inhabit planes other than just ground level and do so with […]

June 2010 Bloom Day

A 2-year-old mossed basket with sedums, agave, and oregano ‘Kent Beauty.’ I was surprised to see the oregano return this year. Life in a mossed basket can be rough.

The urns of arctoctis. Hopefully, the next time I replant the urns will be the day after Thanksgiving, to fill them with tulips. July is […]

Laughter in the Distance

Not a title to a pulpy romance novel but a snippet of Hinkley’s hilarious prose from his infamous Heronswood nursery catalogues. (The nursery was opened in 1987, bought by Burpee in 2000 and closed by them in 2006.) The catalogues unfortunately haven’t survived office purges, but the context I remember for the quote is that […]