Irises: Carefree Backyard Orchids

The time is now for irises, whether you prefer classic bearded fleur-de-lis irises or native, Pacific Coast irises. Last week I had the privilege to visit two horticultural venues that featured irise...

Tough Plants

Just as we are getting ready to install our spring gardens, three publications come along to give guidance in plant selection. One book, by Sharon Amos, is called “Tough Plants,” and bear...

Gazania and Other Water-Wise Selections

There are lessons to be learned from the commercial landscape on the corner of Milbank Street and Sylmar Avenue, just east of Van Nuys Boulevard in Sherman Oaks. This landscape offers a hint of pleas...

Theodore Payne Foundation

If it has been a while since you last visited the Theodore Payne Foundation Nursery in Sun Valley, I highly recommend you go back and take another look. For years, although the people working there m...

Tough Plants

Just as we are getting ready to install our spring gardens, three publications come along to give guidance in plant selection. One book, by Sharon Amos, is called “Tough Plants,” and bear...

Kangaroo Paws

When browsing nursery perennials and studying their labels, I have noticed there is one vital piece of information that is never included: life expectancy. I do not know if this tidbit of data would ...

Dorught Tolerant, Yet Colorful

Question: I’m tired of reading books and articles on drought-tolerant plants featuring just spiny, cactusy plants. I want color and beauty. The idea of living without flowers and color is depre...

Baja Fairy Duster and other Delights

Maybe it’s the effect of all that late winter rain, but I cannot recall an approach to spring that was bedecked with so many plants in full bloom. A wonderful place to view the white hanging ur...

Drought Tolerant Gardens

Tightening budgets and a statewide drought have made saving water in the garden an imperative for the immediate future and beyond. Strategies for water conservation invariably center around garden de...