Video: In the garden from Viddy iPhone app

Playing around with a new video sharing app on my iPhone today — Viddy.

Event: Santa Barbara Native Plant Tour this Weekend

From Sunset Magazine online.

I have never attended a garden tour, but lately I have found myself more interested. This sounds like an excellent tour with a price tag that is not too bad. If you happen to attend, please let us know how it was in the comments.

Santa Barbara Native Plant Tour

Posted by Sunset, April 12, 2011 in Events

By Jim McCausland, Sunset Magazine

If you’re anywhere near Santa Barbara this Saturday, April 16, plan to join Santa Barbara Botanic Garden’s first-ever native plant tour.

Cosponsored by The Channel Islands Chapter of California Native Plant Society, the tour will get you into private gardens from Thousand Oaks to Goleta.

Cost for the self-guided tour is $15 for members of CNPS or SBBG or $25 for non-members. The fee gets you directions to each location and includes admission to Santa Barbara Botanic Garden any day during California Native Plant Week, April 17–23, plus nursery discounts that can help you jump-start your own native garden.

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Take 10 minutes to just sit and enjoy your garden…

[Tip] Take 10 minutes to just sit and enjoy your garden…today. Let go of your attempts to control it for a short time.

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I Like This – April 8, 2011

Photo: Turn your Face to the Sun

Turn your Face to the Sun, originally uploaded by Ben Heine.

This photo from Flickr is a great reminder that Spring (and Summer) are on their way. Hang in there!

Via Flickr:
© Ben Heine || Facebook || Twitter ||

A sunflower field I captured near Sarlat in France

The above photo has been shot with the Samsung NX10

For more information about my art:

Sweet Message

A poem by Katie Gabrielle

sunny flower in my garden
may I speak
I beg your pardon!
you fill the air with
joy and love
a beauty
from heaven above
children count
your petals many
until soon
there just
ain’t any!
come again another time
your sweet message
is sublime

Grass cleanup: Before and After

I wrote a few days ago, and made the Grass video, about the overgrown grass that was taking over the front garden. Today, I spent about a half hour focusing on one section of those paths. Applying my 10-minute Gardener methodology (LAUGH) I selected just one small section to attack today. I wasn’t going to try and do everything, just this one small part of the pathways. This served me well as I was able to see a big difference with just a little work.

In the past, I have used my Loop Hoe to remove the grass, but today I found that using my hands seemed to work best. This may have been because the grass clumps were so big. I was able to grab a large section of it and work it back and forth to get it out, roots and all. In some cases, I was able to get my fingers under the large mat of roots and roll it up, almost like you were rolling up sod from a lawn.

I was able to combine this project with one other, too. I have meaning to pull the flagstones from these paths for years. They aren’t really needed and tend to disappear under the leaf mold. As I pull the grass from each section, I am also pulling up these flagstones to be used elsewhere in the garden. I plan on refurbishing the short walls in the back garden (which were made from discarded concrete refuse) and I think topping it with the flags might dress it up a bit.

Looking at the pictures below, I think you will see that this cleanup was pretty effective. I will most likely proceed the same way with the rest of the paths. Looking over how much I cleared today, though, I probably have another 8-10 hours of work ahead of me — unless I can get the wife and boy to lend a hand.

Grass Before Grass After

Click for large images

Roses in April

Roses in april

Roses in April 2011

Video: Grass: A Short Essay


Can’t see video? Click to watch on YouTube!

Download “Grass: A Short Essay” – iPod Ready Format

Book Giveaway Winner!

A winner has been chosen in our book giveaway contest for March. Facebook Fan Page member Minibox Farm has been selected randomly from the list of members from the Gardener’s Notebook Fan Page.

Join the Fan Page and watch the blog here for upcoming giveaways.


Review: Melissa’s Everyday Cooking with Organic Produce by Cathy Thomas

Elsewhere Online: Project Noah App Lets You Learn About Nearby Wildlife and Plants

I love when someone puts the iPhone to good use. Here is one that uses the Internet access, camera and GPS to help your explore your world.


Project Noah is directed at kids, but I think anyone would find it interesting. You take photos and tag plants and wildlife along your travels and share them with other Project Noah users. Having trouble with identification? No problem, post it anyway and let the community help you figure it out.

Project Noah App Lets You Learn About Nearby Wildlife and Provide Worthy Research Yourself: “Project Noah App Lets You Learn About Nearby Wildlife and Provide Worthy Research Yourself

Kat Hannaford — This could be an app that makes you relinquish control of your iPhone and see the nearest kid around you begin a lifelong journey in wildlife appreciation. The free Project Noah app lets you snap photos of a plant or animal and submit it to find out details on exactly what it is, and what it’s good for.”

(Via Gizmodo.)

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