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Dazzling Dahlias – 17 in a series – Pompon and Ball Dahlias to Grow via BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine

All dahlias are flamboyant and gorgeous but there’s something extra special about pompon and ball dahlias, with their exquisite globe-shaped flowers. They are often seen at flower shows and gardening competitions and make beautiful cut flowers.  Pompon dahlias, as their name suggests, have pompon-like flowers – the petals curve inwards to create stunning, intricate blooms up to […]

Growing Wild: Gardening as a sensory experience via Daily Hampshire Gazette

Gardening is in part so deeply satisfying because it has the ability to stoke all of the senses, but none more profoundly than our sense of smell. Fragrance in the garden has the power to unearth old memories and to etch new ones, to connect us deeply to our own cycles of life on earth. […]

Three garden resolutions via Red Dirt Ramblings

I seem to be much better at holding to other people’s resolutions instead of my own, so I figure I will piggy-back on a few of my favorite blog’s resolutions in order to make a good start on the year.  (LAUGH) — Douglas   Remove overly-aggressive plants 1. Remove overly-aggressive plants like Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm.’ Although this […]

How I use Coffee Grounds In The Garden | Bren Haas via Creative Living with Bren Haas

I use coffee grounds in my gardens, though usually as just green material for my compost bins along with all the other kitchen waste. It is good to see some other, direct, uses for coffee grounds. There is an 18 minute interview video as part of this article, too. — Douglas     Over the […]

Gift guide for useful gardening tools and gifts via Los Angeles Times

  Read Gift guide for useful gardening tools and gifts via Los Angeles Times * A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out! An interesting link found among my daily reading Read more on this topic: 2012 Gift […]

Master Gardener: Protecting your home from wildfires and tips for winter gardening via Press Enterprise

  Here in Southern California, we joke about our four seasons: fire, flood, earthquake, and drought. In the fall, otherwise known as fire season, we have hot, dry weather punctuated by gusty winds reaching up to 70 miles per hour. These are perfect conditions for catastrophic wildfires to establish and spread. If you live in […]

To Help Birds This Winter, Go Easy on Fall Yard Work via Audubon

There’s a certain satisfaction in autumn chores. When the weather’s right, cleaning gutters, touching up paint, or splitting some firewood can feel less like manual labor and more like a rite of the season. But if you want to make your backyard a welcoming winter haven for birds, some fall tasks call for a laissez-faire approach. “Messy […]

MaliArts designs city-chic beehives to save solitary bees via Inhabitat

You don’t need to spend hundreds of dollars on these lovely bee houses and waterers, but providing some respite for our native bees is a great idea. You might find some ideas here about houses you can build yourself or order one of these to add to your garden. – Douglas     We’re big […]

Gardening: Tips for growing tropical and exotic fruit trees in Southern California via Orange County Register

The pleasure of hanging out with plant people is what you learn from them. Such people, and the plants they grow, are typically full of wonderful surprises. Just the other day, I met Ash Jahanbin, whose mission in life is to grow and to care for exotic fruit trees. To this end, he runs a […]

Bringing nature home: Why and how to garden with native plants via Coastal View News

Gardening with plants native to the Santa Ynez mountains and Carpinteria’s coastal bluffs is a beautiful way to honor the ecosystems in which we live, as well as providing an environmentally sustainable alternative to water-guzzling landscapes such as lawns.   Native plants bloom and fruit prolifically throughout the year with almost no water, providing crucial […]