From Aleppo Pine to Silk Tree

“For about 8 years we enjoyed a lovely Aleppo pine on my hillside yard.  This tree was purchased in a large box and was quite mature when we brought it in and it flourished for many years.  We ...

Life is a Process of Planting Seeds

“Life is a process of planting seeds for the future.  This is how Adam (from adama, the Hebrew word for earth) got his name.  For the virtue of earth is found in the plants that grow out of it and in...

Slope Planting, Plumeria Pruning

We moved to a new house in Castaic twenty-seven years ago.  There is a steep slope in back.  It requires a combination of trees, bushes and ground cover to keep the soil in place. We have sprinklers ...

7 Plant Wonders of Los Angeles

Below is a list of what are, in my humble opinion, the seven wonders of the Los Angeles plant world, as well as some honorable mentions. 1.  I initially thought of making such a list many years ago w...

Rough Bark vs. Smooth

It happened that a certain student, full of philosophical curiosity, went to a sage, someone steeped in ancient wisdom, and complained, “I don’t understand,” the student began. “Why did God create a ...

Flowerless Anthurium and Buggy Eugenia

I have been puzzled as to why one of my Anthurium plants will not bloom!  I have one that puts out so many “flowers” and is beautiful.  They are a light pink color.  The other one had red...

Musk Roses and Black Flowers

I’m in love with a ballerina. A ‘Ballerina’ rose, that is. ‘Ballerina’ is a hybrid musk rose and hybrid musks, for reasons beyond comprehension, are seldom seen in the nursery trade. Hybrid musks are...

Yucca, Tangerine, and Hellebore

  What do a yucca tree, a tangerine tree, and a hellebore have in common?  Not much, really, except that, if you live in the San Fernando Valley, you can grow all three of them in your own backy...

4 Worst Weeds in California Gardens

If there is one daily activity that unites the human race above all others, weeding is it.  Most people on Earth still grow at least some of the food they eat and in order for their seeds to grow int...