my kingdom for a tree, or two…

my kingdom for a tree, or two…

Do you count losses from pesky winter weather as opportunity? That’s the path I’m taking. This small tree/large shrub for instance. Do you think it’s a sign that I can never remember its name? Oleander? No, that’s not right. It has Rosemary-like foliage. It’s from New Zealand, and I bought it at Xera Nursery. I transplanted it from my Alameda garden. But I have a devil of a time remembering the genus. (more…)

A Winter Stop by Skidmore Woods

A Winter Stop by Skidmore Woods

It’s well established that the weather gods are crazy, all over the country. Apparently California’s HUGE storm will alleviate drought, with flash floods, mud slides, and other general pestilence.

Around these parts, it’s been raining nonstop. We’ve had more rain in a half of February than is usual for the entire month. And that’s saying something for the Pacific Northwest. We’re hunkered down waiting for the deluge to stop. I don’t think I’m alone in yearning for gardening weather. I like to think I embrace the abundance of rain for the green it produces. But come on, this is ridiculous. (more…)

Happy Valentine’s Day

Happy Valentine’s Day

I’m sometimes tempted to write off holidays that seem primarily Hallmark driven. But that’s the curmudgeon in me. When I was a kid, Valentine’s Day ranked right up there with Halloween. I can feel the cramp developing in my right hand just thinking about all those cards for school the next day.

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plant lust list: Camellia

plant lust list: Camellia

Seriously. There’s not Camellia one in my garden. I thought I didn’t like them. But I suspect it’s a prejudice born of those ubiquitous mis-pruned Camellias of my youth. When I was a kid, every yard had at least one, and usually more. Apparently, though, they ain’t supposed to be primarily giant light-blocking lollipops–good for concealing pint-sized, water-pistols packing assailants. (more…)

in search of the gardening grove

in search of the gardening grove

I’m having trouble keeping track of what’s what. There was the holiday blur, with odd hours and events, vacation days, a couple December birthdays–or maybe a dozen–I can’t really remember. And then we had the situation with weather. So extra bodies around the house, some “working from home.” I always work from home, usually with plenty O’solitude. I didn’t get much done. (more…)

Surprise Snow Storm hits Pacific Northwest: Gardeners Freak Out

Surprise Snow Storm hits Pacific Northwest: Gardeners Freak Out

You may have heard that we got an unusual bit of snow here in the Pacific Northwest. This is a rare event, and many of us have no idea what to expect in the aftermath. There are a couple opinion camps on snow itself. Those who abhor it–they’ve often moved here from snowier climes. And those who love it–generally natives who have suffered a lifetime of snow deprivation.
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the Urban Forest

the Urban Forest

Do you have any notion of the percentage of evergreen versus deciduous trees in your area? I hadn’t given it much thought. I’ve been wanting to add conifers to my garden, not too big–and I want them to have an open canopy. But other than that, what I don’t know is a lot.

How about you. What’s your sense of trees in the Urban Forest? (more…)