Category: Plant Profiles

Geraniums and Pelargoniums in My Garden geraniums pelargoniums

Geraniums and Pelargoniums in My Garden

Geranium ‘Johnson’s Blue’ Geraniums and pelargoniums may look fragile and delicate, but they’re actually some of the hardest working plants in my garden.  Why? They’re ignored by browsing deer, they take our never-ending drought with a grain of salt, and I even have a some in our zone 6 Lake Tahoe garden that don’t mind […]

Lupine Meadow at Lake Tahoe lupine meadow

Lupine Meadow at Lake Tahoe

Every few years, when the conditions are just right, this meadow is filled with thousands and thousands of lupines. I just so happened to be visiting Lake Tahoe during this magical time and wanted to share these photos with you.    This naturally occurring meadow is located just a few miles from Tahoe City, and […]

Harbingers of Spring – Flowering Quince & Pipevine Swallowtails Pipevine Swallowtail and Quince

Harbingers of Spring – Flowering Quince & Pipevine Swallowtails

The first day of spring is finally here – HOORAY!  There’s lots happening in the garden right now, but I have to say the #1 harbingers of spring are my giant Flowering Quince shrubs.  There’s nothing subtle about these flowers, ushering in spring loud and clear, shouting to the world that spring is here! Bright […]

Rosemary in the Garden 'Mozart' rosemary

Rosemary in the Garden

A designer once told me she never plants rosemary in her garden because it’s too common. Huh?

Of course, everyone has a right to their own opinion, but not planting something just because it’s common? 

Personally, I happen to LOVE rosemary in the garden and incorporate it into as many designs as I can.  

Whether it’s the upright ‘Tuscan Blue,’ mid-size ‘Mozart’ (in the photo, left) or the groundcover ‘Prostratus’ (and everything in between,) I can’t get enough of this plant.

It’s an especially treasured plant for those of us who share our gardens with marauding deer, rabbits, and gophers, as the highly aromatic leaves tend to repel them.

At the same time, because of its long bloom time, it’s a bee magnet (mason bees, honey bees, and bumblebees) as well as hummingbirds, and butterflies. 

Four Seasons of Salvias Salvia elegans and 'Bearrs' limetree

Four Seasons of Salvias

Yes, you read that right – I have FOUR seasons of salvias in my garden.  Now keep in mind, I live in a temperate zone-9 climate, so my winter isn’t going to be like a Midwest winter.  But even if you live in colder areas, there are salvias for spring, summer, AND fall. I went […]

Fabulous Francoa – for the dry shade garden Francoa '

Fabulous Francoa – for the dry shade garden

Francoa ramosa is one of my favorite perennials for dry shade.  I’ve had them grow equally happy in fairly deep shade to bright shade, requiring little water once established.  In fact, in my zone 9 garden, they’re evergreen, dying back a bit to form a tidy green mound before starting the show all over again […]

Ornamental Oxalis in the Garden oxalis

Ornamental Oxalis in the Garden

I love oxalis in my garden! Before you all think I’ve lost my mind, I’m not talking about the horribly invasive oxalis weed that threatens to take over lawns and gardens everywhere.   I’m talking about the many varieties of colorful and well-behaved ornamental oxalis hybrids. The ornamental varieties often get overlooked in the nurseries, not […]

Foxtail Lily Frenzy Eremerus (Foxtail Lilies)

Foxtail Lily Frenzy

I’d like to introduce you to my new obsession – Foxtail Lilies (eremurus ‘Oase’) I’ve wanted to write about these for months, ever since I bought the tubers at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show this past February.    But every time I sit down to write, I look out the window and see the towers […]

Euphorbia euphoria

Euphorbia euphoria

Once the blistering heat of summer arrives (any day now!) my euphorbias will take center stage in the garden. Their heat-loving quality is just one of the many reasons why they’re a staple in my garden. They’re also extremely drought-tolerant, they’re awful tasting to gophers, deer & rabbits (thanks to their irritating sap), and they […]

Lavenders for all four seasons lavenders

Lavenders for all four seasons

Lavenders are one of my favorite low-water, low-maintenance perennials for my mild-climate, zone 9 garden.  After designing gardens for 20 years now, I’d have to say they’re in at least 90% of my gardens – and for good reason!   Many varieties of lavender are really long-lived and they thrive on neglect (the most common […]

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