Showing posts from February, 2011

Stonewall Kitchens

 I try nobly to incorporate edibles into my garden, though space and exposures often confound my best efforts. I can usually always fit it a Sungold tomato, even if in a pot, and this year I have plans for haricots verts and Armenian cucumber, both to be grown vertically. I return frequently to photos I took while on a garden junket to Maine in the summer of 2009. Stonewall Kitchen in York is my benchmark for combining edibles and ornamentals beautifully.

The Arboretum at UC Davis

 Over morning coffee I pondered my options for a rainless Sunday. Why not visit a garden that I would not even consider for a summertime destination? Davis fits the bill; the central valley of California is dreadful in summer. Flat, hot and hazy.  The University at Davis is the premiere school for veterinary science, and enology in the California system. The arboretum is modest when compared to the botanical garden at UC Berkekely, but it has some nice features going for it. It's free, it's open 24 hours a day ( amazingly I saw no evidence of Saturday night student beer parties ) and it is adjacent to downtown ; walkers, runners and bikers are the beneficiaries of its wide paths.  The paths run along each side of a stream, in this area Hardenbergia was in full bloom along the banks. I couldn't find the tag for this Acacia caught the sunlight in a lovely way. Acacia vestita 'Hairy Wattle' .. so why the 'hairy' moniker ? I searched for eviden

Urban Homestead

Ok, well maybe it's stretch to apply the term 'urban' to a mission..but urbanity is relative, right ? What might pass for urban in Northern California in 1823 ?   And anyway, Urban Homestead seems like a catchy title for a post.   And how about the fruits on this Prickly Pear about sustainable ! Mission San Francisco de Solano is in the town of Sonoma, adjacent to the square. These photos were taken in January.

BloomDay February

I'm a Bloomday Sophomore -two more and I graduate. I'll be happy with a 3.0 .  What did I look at in February before I grew Hellebores ?      I love Pansies. I think it's the fragrance.-or maybe the faces ? . These ruffle-y numbers are new for me this year-naturally I lost the tag and have no clue what they are named. WTH. Clematis Armandii is unfolding. I could post a photo of Borage every month . I always have one- they seem oblivious to the hazzards of winter.

Cootamundra Wattle

An instance where the common name is almost longer and more complicated than the scientific, I can't say I've ever heard anyone apply this moniker to Acacia baileyana. Now blooming here in the valley  these Acacias flaunt themselves on roadsides and the edges of vineyards , and are only maligned by those unfortunate souls who suffer the plague of allergies.


 The line of demarcation is blurry here in zone 9 and fickle too, receding and advancing along with  radical temperature fluctuations; frosty rooftops give way to a cold beer at noon in the warm sun on a patio  that is still unobstructed by the leafy canopy of the nearby trees. 30 at 5AM , 70 at noon.  This Clematis armadii is my personal signpost..when the buds plump up and begin to peek out my garden has turned a corner- it's waking up. We still are likely to have cold and wet days ahead. There will be setbacks-standing water, snails, weeds and frostburn -but stuff is growing. It's spring-ish.