Archive for the ‘Gardening’ Category

Winter Bloom

I was surprised to see the bloom spike coming out of this aloe a few weeks ago. I’ve had this aloe in the same blue pot for a couple of years. (See here for an earlier pic.) It had been in full sun and was starting to stress out. Personally, I don’t like the stressed look on my aloes and succulents, so I moved it into a shadier spot. She rewarded me with this awesome bloom! (And brighter green stripes.) I took this pic with my iphone and filtered it through Instagram. What fun!


A Fairy’s Wand of My Own

Neighborhood fountain of flowers


I passed by this fountain of flowers on my way to the BART station one morning and had to snap a couple of pics. I didn’t know what it was, but I wanted to add it to my imaginary front yard garden one day.
Flower identified at Annie’s!


 A few days later, I went to Annie’s Annuals & Perennials to check out their Art in the Garden event. As my girl sat down to remove the lava rock from her princess sandals, I spotted the very same fountain of flowers. Of course I would find it at Annie’s! I asked them what it is and found out that it’s a Dierama (aka Fairy’s Wand aka Angel’s Fishing Rod). They only had a couple small plants left for sale, and only in white, so I picked up my very own Dierama Guinevere.  

Dierama Guinevere


And as per my habit, I will put it in a pot in the back yard for a while until it grows up a bit. By then I’m sure our front bedding areas will be ready for planting. I’m serious.

Goodbye Snails

Snail-free Agave Attenuata

Ohh, you shoudla heard the expletives fly this morning when I discovered this colony of snails in my beloved agaves.  I wanted to pull an Amy Stewart and throw them into the street…but there were too many neighbors and passersby out and about, so I gathered up about 15-20 snails and threw them into the garbage. Goodbye!



Snail Hideout


Back Yard Aloe Bed


New Aloe Succulent bed in the back yard

I cleared this flower bed of oxalis this weekend and finally put some aloes into the ground, which is not easy for me due to my pot habit (containers, pots, pottery, and the like).

Beginning to look like summer

Of course, I had to keep this collection of old succulents in their pots…for now.



Can’t wait for them to settle in and start growing a bit. 

Potted Aloe

Container Gardening

Succulent stairs

Back patio succulents


I did a little rearranging of my succulents in the back yard this weekend. Some of these potted lovelies moved with us from our San Francisco apartments years ago. Container gardening started as a necessity due to our small SF spaces.  

My flowers


I’ve had the big hen and chicks platter for nearly ten years. She has pups all over the garden. Some are in the green pot to the left of Mama plant; the other surrounding succulents are just cousins and friends. The succulent on the far left loves her current spot. I made a mistake last spring when I moved her from a winter shady spot to full sun from one day to the next. A couple of days later I noticed her poor leaves had a terrible sunburn! She was boiling!  So I moved her back to this semi-shady spot where she only gets late afternoon sun. She is much happier. She started out being just one little rosette in a small planter years ago. I’ve moved her to progressively larger pots and she always fills it up nicely.  

"Before" shot. Winter weeds begone!

 Amazing what a difference a little weeking will make. 


Mini-planters on the potting table

I found these baby rosettes living under my potting table last year. Clever succulents! They were self-propagating on the mossy concrete patio. I scooped them up and put them in these little pots. Some of them have moved on to bigger pots. 


What a great driveway!

Deer Neighbors

We went for a walk in the neighborhood the other evening and came upon a couple of our deer neighbors.

They are cute little destroyers, aren’t they? I remember when we first moved here a few years ago, I was inspired by a recent trip to Boston where I saw many potted cabbages for the first time. They were so pretty! So I bought a couple of planter boxes for the front porch and loaded them with lovely purple and green cabbages and paired them with orange and black pansies for an October display of Halloween color. It only took a few nights for the neighborhood deer to locate the “salad bar” I so thoughtfully put out for them.  They ate all of the contents of both planter boxes overnight. Hmph! I was so shocked and dismayed! (Rookie that I was.)

So I switched to front porch succulents. And the deer don’t touch ’em!