• Bullock's Oriole, Icterus bullockii

    Spring discoveries: Two new natives

    by  • April 27, 2016 • 4 Comments

    Orange you glad to find two new CA natives in the garden? Yes, I am! A new bird and a new California native annual are discovered here in my garden in April.  New or just not noticed before?  Either way, I’m delighted!  And both happen to be shades of orange. First, what I thought was...

    Read more →
    Historic Iris

    For the love of Iris

    by  • April 2, 2016 • 3 Comments

    A gardener’s April day trip On a recent visit to Coarsegold, California, I stopped by the Hillside Iris Farm of Bill Tyson, just before the peak bloom.   His farm is open to the public just during the month of April when Iris are in full bloom and ready to order by color and shape.  You choose the...

    Read more →

    Penstemons, a perfect foothill flower

    by  • March 18, 2016 • 9 Comments

    Penstemon 'Elfin Pink'

    Beautiful Beard Tongue As I stroll through the garden, my attention is drawn to how well adapted Beard Tongue or Penstemons are for the Sierra Foothills! Whether, cultivated hybrids or CA Natives, they are perfectly easy to grow and the bloom is spectacular in your garden.  Scroll through the ones I have in my garden and...

    Read more →

    Catching up with Yosemite Nature Notes

    by  • December 13, 2015 • 1 Comment

    Yosemite Valley

    Yosemite Nature Notes Yosemite Nature Notes is a video podcast series that tells unique stories about the natural and human history of Yosemite National Park. Produced by the National Park Service, this series features park rangers, scientists, historians and park visitors as they discuss the diverse plants and animals that make Yosemite their home,...

    Read more →

    Intermountain Nursery’s Harvest & Peace Festival 2015

    by  • October 26, 2015 • 1 Comment

    Music goes on all day at the Harvest and Peace Festival

    Objective: Fall planting Ca Natives,…and to have fun! Each October, on my birthday weekend, a favorite nursery plans it’s annual celebration and harvest festival.  I’m so flattered!  But really, since Fall is the best time to plant here in the foothills, I go to this event for fun and also with an objective. The...

    Read more →

    Make a garden apron from jeans. No sewing!

    by  • October 6, 2015 • 0 Comments

    Apron from jeans

    Besides, talking bee and butterfly plants and using less pesticides  at the last Garden Workshop in Oakhurst the other Sunday, I demonstrated how to make a garden apron from Tractor Man’s old jeans,… …in two minutes! It’s easy to make a garden apron from an old pair of jeans. You just need to know...

    Read more →

    Grinding holes in the Sierra Foothills

    by  • September 23, 2015 • 6 Comments

    Grinding holes

    Looking into the Sierra Foothill’s past Generations ago —women would gather at these spots to grind their acorn meats. “That’s where they would go get to work. That’s their kitchen — they would keep that very clean,” “You’ll find different holes at different depths. Traditionally, they like a shallower hole to pound the acorn...

    Read more →

    Finding Seven Rock

    by  • August 4, 2015 • 2 Comments

    Seven 7 rock

    Locating a local landmark 7 Rock is a landmark referred to in the coverage of the recent Willow Fire, smoldering now, as this is written. Just where is 7 rock? ‘7 Rock’ is a granite formation surrounded by green pine trees, high on a mountain in the Sierra national Forest. It can be found...

    Read more →

    Last day of June in the garden

    by  • July 2, 2015 • 1 Comment

    Cupflower, or Nierembergia

    What I’m REALLY doing in the garden…last day of June I just came in from an hour out in the garden! Yep, from 6:30am to now, I puttered in the garden doing what I call ‘watering as needed.’ Lamb’s ears are a good ‘indicator plant’ for watering and when this VERY hardy plant droops,...

    Read more →

    ‘First week of June’ gardening day

    by  • June 10, 2015 • 1 Comment

    Cleveland sage

    Just came in from the garden,…perfect day to be out there, especially with my camera. There was really nice, even lighting. Come see what I’m doing in the garden and what is blooming now in June. I’ve been trimming the lower branches off oaks and manzanita, …I’ll pull all that ivy, (from 1 4″...

    Read more →

    June Bloom in the Sierra foothill garden

    by  • May 31, 2015 • 2 Comments

    Autumn sage, Flax and Lamb's ear

    Half the year is over and in the garden I’m walking around taking stock.  June usually means the real riotous bloom of the Iris, fruit trees and bulbs is dying down.  Now the dry garden can be the spotlight. Our climate is very close to that of the Mediterranean. We can grow all the...

    Read more →