The edibles garden, 2016 style

The edibles garden, 2016 style

Last week Patricia mentioned her foray into tomato growing. Since she’d previously asked about my “candy tomatoes” — a reference to the fact everyone was eating them like candy at the open garden last August — I thought I’d share what I’m growing this year.

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Michauxia campanuloides: a groovy outlier

Michauxia campanuloides: a groovy outlier

Get your Sputnik on here. Pronounced: Miss-SHOW-ee-a. Hah, I’ve been saying it wrong all this time. It pays to do a little research–which in fairness, I do. Constantly. But with a catalog of some 34,000 plant and growing, it hard to keep an eye on everything. Of course, we are now getting terrific help from Grace of Gardening with Grace, and Evan Bean of The Practical Geek. These kids know their stuff, and plant lust is the better for it.

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The unifiers

The unifiers

Well designed gardens are known for their sweeps and swaths of the same plant. Onesies are frowned upon — plant in groups of threes, or better yet five or even seven. But how can I possibly have room for all the cool plants if I do it that way? Thus I’ve resigned myself to having a “collectors garden” — not that there’s anything wrong with that — but it’s a label that (I’m being honest here) left me feeling a little “less than.” Like my garden was nice, but with an asterisk. (more…)

if you had to pick a favorite plant…

if you had to pick a favorite plant…

Do you ever play that game? I hope so, that I’m not just some nutty outlier. I’m going to guess you do, at least once in a while. Though I stand ready and willing to be corrected.

Sometimes to make the game more manageable, I try narrowing to just one genus. That doesn’t really work either, but it’s fun to try, like imagining what to do with a winning lottery ticket. Look out neighbors: your yards are getting resprayed.

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How many colors do you count?

How many colors do you count?

I thought I’d let a couple of our nurseries describe the varied colors of this fabulous plant, after all they say it much better than I could:

This ever-colorful evergreen’s leaves keep growing in yellow-orange-red-green marbled patterns…” – Cistus Nursery

New growth emerges in tones of hot orange-red and then changes to gold that is irregularly splashed on deep green leaves. NO OTHER HARDY VINE has foliage this color and this dramatic.” – Xera Plants

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gardens: Palm Springs style

gardens: Palm Springs style

We’re four days back from spending a long weekend in Palm Springs, and I’ve yet to catch up with myself. My family lured me out of town by giving me the trip as a birthday present. Smart. I’ve a wee tendency to imagine catastrophe and thus inclined to stay close to “home base.” Wouldn’t it be ironic if I was sitting here feeling all snug in my house, and a Fed Ex Plane known for skirting our eaves every evening seriously undershot the airport?

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