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Specializing in colorful, water-conserving gardens

Specializing in colorful, water-conserving gardens

Water Conservation and the Drought: Local Landscape Experts Meet to Discuss Ways to Cut Water Use

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They’re not hitting the panic button yet. But there is an increasing sense of urgency on the part of local water agencies to get out the word that the drought is serious and that people need to start using significantly less water. Earlier this week, water purveyors met at Chase Palm Park Center with about 30 landscape architects, designers, irrigation specialists, master gardeners and other landscape pros to talk about the drought and explore ways to capture the public’s attention. “Obviously we had a lot of rain in […]

It’s Time to Plant Bare-Root Deciduous Fruit Trees

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Garden miracle or lesson in patience? Planting a bare-root, deciduous fruit tree is a little of both. The garden miracle: that what looks like a stick with a few scraggly roots will ultimately yield a delicious bounty. The patience: you have to care for that stick for three to five years before it completes its transformation into a leafy tree that begins to bear fruit. Now is the season for bare-root fruit trees. They’re dormant, so they don’t mind being stripped of soil, transported and planted before waking […]

Fall Planting: Nine Great California Natives

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Just in time for fall planting, I’ve returned with a treasure trove of California native plants from Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden’s Grow Native Nursery in Los Angeles. With the evenings getting nippy and the ground still warm, now is a delightful time to plant natives. They’ll (presumably) get watered in with winter rains and be poised to take off next spring all on their own, and with only an occasional dose of irrigation from there on out. I also have my fingers crossed that what I’ve chosen […]

Waiting for Fall: Start Planning Now

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Limbo. That’s the status of many Central Coast gardens during the first part of September. Other than harvesting the last sun-ripened summer vegetables, keeping pace with watering and pulling an occasional weed, there’s not much that demands our attention. Which makes this the perfect time to prepare for fall. Whether you’re anticipating a simple tune-up or wholesale renovation, you can start planning now. Consider the overall layout and flow of your garden first. Then focus your attention on plants. Hardscape Hardscape is just about everything that’s not a […]

Please Join Me on August 7, 2013

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On Wednesday, August 7, I’ll be the featured speaker for the monthly meeting of the Santa Barbara County Horticultural Society. My talk will be: “Digging the Good Life: Creating Colorful, Water-Conserving Gardens.” I’ll describe how to create gardens in a number of different styles by using the wide range of colorful and interesting low-water plants that thrive in our mild, wonderful climate.

Asian Citrus Psyllid Found: Quarantine Imminent?

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A tiny bug that can carry a deadly citrus disease has been found for the first time in Santa Barbara County — in Santa Maria — and a quarantine may be declared within the next few days. An Asian Citrus Psyllid was caught last month in a yellow sticky trap hanging from an orange tree in a residential neighborhood three blocks north of the Santa Maria Town Center Mall. State agricultural officials confirmed the find this week. Why the Psyllids are Dangerous While the psyllids on their own […]

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