What is Landscaping Supposed to Do?

“Could you explain what landscaping is supposed to do?” Kathryn Rostant of Mission Hills asks. “Could you generalize on what you think a nice front yard should look like in this hot...

Water-Saving Tips from Jerusalem

I never realized how beautiful marigolds could be until I saw them growing in Jerusalem. In that ancient city, all municipal plantings – which include lots of marigolds during the summer months...

Irrigation Lessons from Jerusalem

I have just returned from three ethereal weeks in Jerusalem, which has two things in common with Los Angeles: arid, baking summer days and too many cars. Whatever grows in Los Angeles, from roses to ...

Too Much Water Can Be Harmful to Plants

As the summer sun arrives full strength, watering becomes a primary concern to Los Angeles gardeners. This is the first summer in many years without drought-imposed restrictions on watering. Yet, too...

The Secret to Growing Perfect Plants

If, before visiting Louise Olson’s private home and garden, you were not a plant lover, you would, in all likelihood, become a plant lover before your visit was over. Olson, retired from a career in ...

Tree Yuccas and Their Ilk

Gunilla and Michel Hamaoui, who live in Woodland Hills, sent me a photo of a tree whose identity they did not know. They also wanted to know how often it flowered. I did not know what kind of tree th...

Arboreta, Patience, & Australian Trees

If you want to learn the meaning – that is, the beauty – of patience, visit a botanical garden or arboretum. I recently had the opportunity to do so in Arcadia, where the Los Angeles Coun...