Time and Temp


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• African daisies
• California Poppy
• Calendula
• Calla Lily
• Narcissus
• Lavander
• Ivy geranium
• Mexican Sage
• Pride of Madera
• Lantana
• Society garlic
• Wild geranium


• Baby arugula
• Onion and garlic greens
• Thyme
• Rhubarb
• Parsley
• Strawberries


Lacecap Hydrangeas-Memories of Hearst Castle

Lacecap Hydrangeas outside window

Lacecap Hydrangeas outside window

I’m not very proud of my garden now. We’ve had a lot of company this summer, the gophers have moved in, and we are still constructing a new addition to our house that will be a kind of garden room. Tree leaves are dusty, the tomatoes are diseased, and vegetables […]

Hen Talk

Hens are big birds.

Hens are big birds.

I’ve been working on setting up another website on chickens. I don’t want to tell you the domain name yet as I’m not proud of its structure. Oh, alright. It’s Backyard Hencam. You guessed it, it has a hencam in it. I’ve never been someone who can do something half-way. […]

Snails & Slugs Coming Your Way

slug by zemistor on Flickr

Snail photo on Flickr by Randy Son of Robert

If you have not found evidence of slugs and snails in your garden by now, believe me, they will be here soon. In our California coastal climate they live (and eat) throughout the year. They slide though the night on their slimy mucus-producing “foot”, leaving a […]

Resolutions For A More Sustainable Garden


I spend a lot of time staring into space this time of year. I may look as if I have nothing on my mind, but on the contrary, I am visualizing how to make each portion of my garden more sustainable, less labor intensive, more drought tolerant, more naturally beautiful.

As a passionate gardener, I […]

Gopher or Mole?


The moist soil after some much needed rain in California, has brought out the moles and gophers in droves. There is sometimes confusion as to whether your garden has been invaded by gophers (a rodent that eats plants and roots) or by moles that tunnel along the surface, upsetting topsoil and toppling seedlings. It is […]

Wildlife Abundance in Gardens

A turkey vulture rest in the sun.

There has been an abundance of wildlife in our gardens this year. Seven years ago, a single quail couple hatched chicks in the open space behind our property and used the fenced portion of our garden as their playpen. The family of fifteen ended up being a family of four, but those are considered good […]

Worm Composting for Beginners

Worm bins ready for harvest,

Worm bins ready for harvest,

Traditional composting of yard clippings and kitchen scraps is not for everyone. Some gardeners just don’t have the space for composting bins but would love to have the “black gold” plant food that composting provides. If you want to try composting on a smaller, more concentrated level, worm composting […]

Home Remedies for the Garden


Whatever you’re paying for high-priced garden solutions, it is far too much! Many concoctions can be made with ingredients you have in your pantry. Here are a few recipes I’ve found to be effective and can be made at home by any frugal gardener.

ROSE SPRAY-helps prevent diseases such as rust, blackspot, and powdery mildew.


Fall Garden Chores in a Temperate Climate

Fall is the clean-up season

Fall is the clean-up season

Fall is not my favorite time of year. The light and colors are fading, the days growing shorter. Landscape plants look tired and spent. Grape vines on the hillsides have shriveled, their harvest (offspring) cut from their branches. I feel a sense of sadness as flowers fade, pumpkin […]

Planting Vegetables In Your Flower Beds

Rhubarb in flower bed.

Rhubarb in flower bed.

You can grow vegetables in greenhouses, raised beds, mounded beds, rows, and in containers. You can plant a “French-intensive” garden or a formal kitchen “parterre”. But if you don’t have the space to dedicate exclusively to vegetables, consider tucking seasonal vegetables in and around your landscape plantings. Planting vegetables among […]