Thursday, March 31, 2011


Nothing beats Pink Jasmine - Jasminum polyanthum for delicious fragrance! This evergreen vine grabs with tendrils and will climb about 10 feet to cover a fence and blooms late Winter- early Spring in SoCal. Give it a good shearing after bloom to clean up the spent flowers.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Another great bulb is Leucojum aestivum. Books say the common name is Summer Snowflake. But it blooms in early Spring and everybody just calls it Leucojum. It comes back every year with those cute white bell flowers that rise up to about 1- 1/2 feet. It tolerates partial shade too.  I can't wait to have it all over the garden.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


Here is a very nice short perennial.   Candytuft - Iberis sempervirions is a great border plant that only blooms in the Spring.  I used to not like it very much because of that.  But look at it in one of my clients' gardens in South Pasadena.  It has brighter whiter flowers than Alyssum, grows about 6 inches tall and stays to itself.  Pretty :-)

Monday, March 28, 2011

Another Great Bulb

This is another Spring flowering bulb that comes back ever year. Sparaxis tricolor is from South Africa, as are many wonderful bulbs that do well In SoCal. It grows to about 8 inches and wants full fun. It looks great under roses or in the border's edge en masse. It dies back completely in the summer. Look for it for sale in most nurseries in September.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Plant Combination

I love these 2 plants, alone and together. The red leaf is Iresine herbstii, will grow to 3 feet and looks best when occasionally pinched. The common name is Beefsteak plant but I know no one who calls it that. The white flower is Euphorbia "Diamond Frost", grows to 2 feet and flowers most of the year. They each like partial shade but will tolerate some sun. The Euphorbia is found in most nurseries, Iresine in independent ones.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Cutest Daffodil

I love this Daffodil because it's so cute! It's Tete-a-Tete(or Head to Head in French) and only grows about 8 inches tall. You'll want to plant this one close to a walkway so it can be seen :-) So cute!

Friday, March 25, 2011


This is an uncommon bulb that does great in SoCal. It's Homeria breyniana. It comes in this coral peachy color(my favorite) and yellow. Blooms in Spring and has long foliage; up to almost 3 feet that wants to lay down a bit. The flowers stand up 2 feet tall. I can't wait to plant mine in the ground. I never see it sold in nurseries. I got mine from a friend :-) The plant pictured is in Alice Gans' garden.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Pruning Pointsettias

In SoCal we can grow Pointsettias in the ground.  Usually it is older plants.  I have tried to overwinter the newest hybrids and they most often die.  Pruning them keeps them from getting too enormous.  My friend Alice told me a good way to remember when to prune them; St. Patricks Day and Fourth Of July.   I pruned a huge one in one of my clients yards today.  It is an old double flowered variety called "Top Hat".   The first pic is today's whacking(I probably should have pruned harder).  The other is what the flower looks like November - February.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Tree for our new house

Just brought home my most expensive(and wholesale at that) plant. It's a Gingko biloba "Autumn Gold". That means it's a male tree and won't have stinky fruit like the female trees. It's in a 24" box and is about 10' tall! My ground is not quite ready but I wanted to get it before it was completely leafed out and the leaves would get thrashed on the drive home. Yeah, I should have got it last week! But it survived the drive unscathed :-). It will have gorgeous yellow foliage this Fall.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

My favorite Daffodil

Daffodil is the common name for the Latin Narcissus. I had to look that up :-) Thalia is my favorite Daffodil. Mine are all still in pots until my ground is ready(soon). They come back every year. And being a triandrus type of Narcissi they have usually 2 blooms per stem. Shop for them in Sept. They will give you many years of beauty.

Ivy Monster?

Ever wonder how the monster that is Ivy (Hedera helix) sticks to anything? It grows brush like attachments that work their way into wood fences, stucco, block walls, your house to climb! I hate it. Can you tell? :-)

Monday, March 21, 2011

One of my favorite plants

This is a plant I use on many jobs. It's called Nandina domestica nana purpurea or Dwarf Heavenly Bamboo. It grows about 2 feet tall, plays well with others and turns this reddish color in cool weather. It's a yellowish green in warm weather.

First post!

Ahoy all,

My friend Ellen suggested that I start a gardening blog because I'm a landscaper and have been putting up all kinds of photos and tips on my facebook page.   So here goes!

My first pic is of this awesome curly Epiphylum at the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland.   I love curly plants. I think it's because I have straight hair.   I don't grow it myself but am on the lookout for it.