I originally grabbed this photo because it showed a lovely formal garden, but as I examined it more closely, I could see a lot that was wild about this picture, too. Yes, it has large lawns, stonework and a fountain, but looking at the edges it is also exuberant, with the beds threatening to spill out into the lawn at any moment. Maybe that is the goal of any garden — to maintain a bit of control but also expose the wilderness that could be.
The truth is, we only carve our gardens out of the wilderness for a small amount of time. I only have to look at properties in my neighborhood that remain empty for a short time. The lawn and garden beds quickly revert to weeds and saplings. Given a few months, I could see the entire property yielding to the overwhelming pressure of nature. Even more, this is here in the relatively dry and inhospitable San Fernando Valley. if you live in a more temperate climate, your lot could go from a cultivated garden to meadow to woodlot in just a year or so.
Tatham Garden [slide]
Creator: Van Altena, Edward Tatham, Edwin, Mrs Bedford Garden Club
A lovely and heavily naturalized Japanese fountain. I love the way it fits in the garden and the contract between the dark stone and light-colored bamboo. There is another form of fountain that I also like called a “deer scare.” These fountains use the water to tip a piece of bamboo so it knocks against a stick or the basic each time it fills. This fountain could be easily modified into such a fountain, too, I think.
Here is a selection of free wallpapers for your computer desktop or smartphone. Right-click and select Save Image As… to download them to your own computer. On your smartphone, click the image to see the full-sized image, tap and hold, then select Save to Camera Roll. You can then attach the wallpapers using your phone’s preferences.
My friend, Chris, recently moved to the island of Oahu. He applied to get a garden allotment and got one long before he thought he would. Now he needs to get moving and is looking for some great advice from AGN viewers, listeners and readers.
If you can, offer some words of wisdom and help Chris get a good start on recovering and starting to grow on his plot.
The conversation is taking place on this Facebook thread, but if you don’t use Facebook, feel free to comment her on this blog post.
Hello Douglas, and fellow gardeners! I have recently joined your fold by renting a community garden plot… Actually i didn’t think that would get it so fast. Perhaps a little background is in order (don’t’ worry it will be a very little). I currently live in central Oahu. Well produce is pretty expensive here (think $3 for a bunch of Kale) and so I thought i would get a plot on a community garden, i thought that i would be a 10′x 5′ raised box, but I got a 40′x 30′ plot the first day. Now I am in the deep end with no tools and little knowledge on the soil or the area. the questions I have are very basic, what do i need to Know/have/ do to get started? I have no tools. The ground is wild and uncultivated. I have trees to the south and the most sun in the east. I do have access to water, but not electricity. I tried to add a picture but might have to add them in a supplemental post. I welcome any wisdom that you can bestow on me. Mahalo!
Interesting Plant: Asparagus Pea (Psophocarpus tetragonolobus)
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Interesting Plant: Asparagus Pea (Psophocarpus tetragonolobus)
“The Winged bean (Psophocarpus tetragonolobus), also known as the Goa bean and Asparagus pea, Four-angled bean and Winged pea, is a tropical legume plant native to New Guinea. It grows abundantly in hot, humid equatorial countries, from the Philippines and Indonesia to India, Burma, Thailand and Sri Lanka. It does well in humid tropics with high rainfall. There are also varieties that can be grown in most areas of the U.S..
The winged bean plant grows as a vine with climbing stems and leaves, 3–4 m in height. It is an herbaceous perennial, but can be grown as an annual. It is generally taller and notably larger than the Common bean. The bean pod is typically 15–22 cm (6–9 in) long and has four wings with frilly edges running lengthwise. The skin is waxy and the flesh partially translucent in the young pods. When the pod is fully ripe, it turns an ash-brown color and splits open to release the seeds. The large flower is a pale blue. The beans themselves are similar to soybeans in both use and nutritional content (being 29.8% to 39% protein).” – Wikipedia.org
I had never heard of the Asparagus Pea until last Saturday night during the Wisconsin Vegetable Garden Google Hangout. Carol and Kerrie from the Seed Keeper Company mentioned that this was one of the new plants they were growing this year. After my reading about the plant, it seems an amazing thing to grow. I might have to check it out myself, even with my well-known aversion to peas in general. Perhaps this is different enough to find a way into my diet.
More information on Asparagus Pea (Psophocarpus tetragonolobus):
Garden Inventory is a series where I begin an inventory of all the plants and trees in my garden. Along with some of my own pictures, I will link to various sources of information about each plant and tree so we can learn a little more together.
I would also like to highlight your special plants and tress. Pass along your favorite plants in the comments and I will use them for future Garden Inventory posts. — Douglas
Garden Inventory: Ficus repens
A rather unassuming plant that often hides the background, almost unnoticed in most gardens. In my case, it once used to cover our back wall until the car dealership behind us decided to rebuild both the wall and their parking lot. I tried to maintain as many of the plants as possible, but the new wall foundations ended up removing most of the plants. Still, I have a few plants and I am trying to recover the new wall, but it is slow going. The vine covers well, but slowly and I need many more individual plants to reestablish it fully. This is one of the plants I am planning on propagating in my (hopefully, soon to happen) Propagation Project. I want to propagate more of nearly everything I have in the garden at the moment.
I like this ficus because, while it covers well, it doesn’t try to take over your entire garden. It only grows a few inches off the surface of the wall and doesn’t seem to like growing across the ground. I can start to climb on adjacent plants, but along this large back wall there are nothing but mature trees, so it is easy to remove any runners that might appear.
Photos of Ficus repens with closeups of flowers, leaves, growing habit, and stems.