Going Daffy Over Daffodils

Daffodils, whose appearance is an undeniable harbinger of spring, bring smiles not only to gardeners but to poets, too.  When William Wordsworth lay on his couch and thought of their unforgettable no...

Bells of Ireland and other Delights

For years, I had seen bells of Ireland in seed and plant catalogues – at least before plant catalogues, much like daily newspapers, became an endangered species. Every time I saw its picture, I imagi...

Sweet Violets

Have you ever smelled sweet violets? If you live in Southern California, the chances are slim when considering the probability of engaging in this unique olfactory experience. During almost forty yea...

Lawn Alternatives

Slowly, over the last few years, more and more front yards in Los Angeles have turned brown and stayed that way or, in some cases, turned to dirt.  It is no longer a stigma for the owner of any sort ...

Flowers in the Dog Days of Summer

August 11 is the date when the dog days of summer, extending each year from July 3 until today, officially come to an end.  These days are characterized by extreme heat along with the lassitude and i...

Misting, Elephant Food, Angel Pelargoniums

A heat wave is like a brushfire.  If it gets too intense, there is really not much you can do to blunt its force. Once a brushfire turns into a wildfire or major conflagration, all the prudent firesc...

Autumn Beauties & Chewing Gum Plant

The bristling heat of this past summer may have finally given way to cooler autumn days, yet two plants continue to make a determined display of blazing orange flowers, reminiscent of the sun. In fac...

Santa Monica Sightings

If you want to enjoy the pleasure of viewing a large variety of lesser known plants arranged in distinctive garden designs, without having to visit a botanical garden, I suggest you take a walk up an...

Milkweeds, Dragon Trees, Star Clusters

I never stop visiting the Sepulveda Garden Center since each time I visit I learn something new.  The Center is located on both sides of  Magnolia Boulevard, just east of Hayvenhurst Avenue, in Encin...

An Amazing Celosia, Dying Algerian Ivy

Imagine an annual plant that grows with weed-like abandon, yet its multitude of flowers can last for months in dry arrangements.  Flowers are violet-purple and bloom from late spring through fall.  L...