Anyone who has moved from inland coast areas, or anyone who has read the books, blog posts and articles based on coastal-California gardening, soon discovers that it’s a different story once you try to establish a native-based garden in the Great Central or other inland valleys, or up into the foothills of the Sierra Nevada.
Western spice bush (Calycanthus occidentlias) under some severe heat stress in this part sun foothill garden. Is more water the answer? I’ve been receiving several questions over the past month or so about plants that have been doing fine for years, but suddenly this summer are looking ragged. This is occurring in gardens that are… Continue reading Heat Stress
Our newer, water-saving landscapes are helping us break free of plain old green in the garden. With many plants, the traits that make them water-thrifty, also give them interesting foliage color and form. We can use this to our advantage by creating a “wow!” garden based on the monochromatic style. Monochromatic gardens have been around… Continue reading A garden of another color
Late-winter is one of my favorite seasons in the garden. Plants that were dormant in summer and fall look refreshed and green now. One of the showiest is silver bush lupin (Lupinus albifrons), with great stalks of purple or pink flowers that you can see from a distance. Bush lupin like to grow in colonies,… Continue reading Spring in the CA native plant garden
This article first appeared in the April 4 edition of the Porterville Recorder newspaper. You’ve probably heard that on April 1, the state Water Quality Control Resource Board announced new state-wide water restrictions. This was no April Fool’s joke, however. Stricter restrictions were expected, so there was nothing surprising in the announcement, and nothing… Continue reading A New Era