Persimmons and Parthenocarpy

I have a persimmon tree purchased 9 years ago. In the past 3 years, the fruit hasn’t grown larger than a grape, changing color but not expanding in size.  The tree receives sun all day long.  W...

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...

Ambrosia Beetles Attack Avocado Trees

My huge avocado tree has been attacked by ambrosia beetles. My tree trimmer says there is nothing to be done to save it. I’ve lived with this tree for 30 years and don’t want to lose it. ...

How to Grow Pumpkins

I’m hoping you can help me with my pumpkin problem.  For the past few years, I have planted pumpkin seeds, mainly for my granddaughters to watch the growing process.  I always get beautiful flo...

Orange Tree and Avocado Tree Problems

Orange and avocado are the most sensible fruit trees to grow in a sub-tropical urban environment such as Los Angeles.  Given plenty of sun, both are relatively pest-free trees and produce dependably ...

Oaks and Acorns

If you have a dog, you should be extra diligent these days about examining its fur for ticks.  My wife, who works next to a park resplendent with mature oak trees, brought attention to the fact that ...

The Curse of Asparagus Fern

Two weeks ago, I suggested drought tolerant asparagus fern (Asparagus sprengeri) as a possible ground cover for somewhat shady slopes.  I cautioned that it is “an extremely aggressive plant” and that...

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...