Thursday, July 23, 2009
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
This is my all time favorite tree. When my husband and I hike in the Newport Coast Area there are natural groves of these in a few spots. They give wonderful shade and the leaves are so beautiful. The photo shows very young California Sycamores just installed at the Mesa Birch Park. This park consists of mostly California Natives. Someday these will be huge and soften the look of the office buildings in the background.
Common name: Allan Bloom Hybrid
I have this in my yard and I love it. The foliage is sort of a grey-green and the flowers are bright yellow. They bloom frequently and add a mass of yellow color to the landscape. This also come in other colors including pink. I haven't been able to find the other colors anywhere local. I have seen this called "Yarrow" also.
The pink and white Allan Bloom Hybrids were found at a park entry in Shady Canyon area.
Common name: French Lavender
French Lavender is in the foreground of this Shady Canyon landscape, designed by David Pedersen, Inc. It is hardy and blooms frequently. We also have this in our front yard.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Whether you are staying in your home or getting ready to sell it, the statement your home makes from the curb is what gives people their first impression of you and your living space. The landscape and entry of your home are like the suit you would wear to a job interview. An entry has potential to say something about the people who live there as well as being inviting and drawing you in.
Needless to say, a special front door in a beautiful wood or an accent color makes a home stand out. If you have a courtyard entry a handcrafted gate in a style to complement your home is a good idea. Having beautiful colored perennials or pots with accent plants in them flanking either side of an entry walk also can be an affordable way to make your entry stand out from others. Whether your home is traditional or contemporary there are many ways to give your home curb appeal with plant material, gates, masonry, and front doors.
Monday, July 20, 2009
Nifty-50 Plants for Water-Smart Landscapes
These plants have been selected because they are attractive, often available in retail nurseries, non-invasive, easy to maintain, long-term performers, scaled for residential landscapes, and of course, after established - drought tolerant.
N-native to California
Botanical Name Common
1. Arctostaphylos species and hybrids, N Manzanita
2. Ceanothus species and hybrids, N California Lilac
3. Cercis occidentalis, N Western Redbud
4. Chamelaucium uncinatum Geraldton Waxflower
5. Cistus species Rockrose
6. Grevillea species and hybrids Grevillea
7. Heteromeles arbutifolia, N Toyon
8. Leucophyllum species Texas Ranger
9. Mahonia aquifolium, N Oregon Grape
10. Myrtus communis Common Myrtle
11. Rosmarinus officinalis Rosemary
12. Westringia fruticosa Coastal Rosemary
13. Aeonium species Aeonium
14. Agave species and hybrids Agave
15. Aloe species and hybrids Aloe
16. Calandrinia grandiflora Rock Purslane
17. Dudleya species and hybrids, N Live Forever
18. Echeveria species and hybrids Hens-and-Chickens
19. Bougainvillea hybrids Bougainvillea
20. Mascagnia macroptera Yellow Orchid Vine
21. Vitis californica, N California Wild Grape
22. Ceanothus griseus horizontalis species and hybrids, N Carmel Creeper
23. Dymondia margaretae Silver Carpet
24. Lampranthus species Ice Plant
25. Lantana montevidensis Trailing Lantana
26. Rosmarinus officinalis ‘Huntington Carpet’ Huntington Carpet Rosemary
• Rosmarinus officinalis ‘Lockwood de Forest’ Lockwood de Forest Rosemary
• Rosmarinus officinalis ‘Prostrata’ Prostrate Rosemary
• Rosmarinus officinalis ‘Santa Barbara’ Santa Barbara Rosemary
27. Sedum species and hybrids Stonecrop
28. Thymus pseudolanuginosus Woolly Thyme
Ornamental Grasses and Grass-like Plants
29. Cordyline australis New Zealand Cabbage Tree
30. Muhlenbergia capillaris Pink Muhly Grass
31. Pennisetum setaceum ’Rubrum’ Red Fountain Grass
32. Phormium tenax and some species and hybrids New Zealand Flax
33. Anigozanthos species and hybrids Kangaroo Paws
34. Encelia californica California Sunflower
35. Lavandula species and hybrids Lavender
36. Mimulus, Native species and hybrids, N Monkey flower
37. Penstemon, Native species Penstemon
• Penstemon heterophyllus, N Foothill Penstemon
• Penstemon parryi, N Parry’s Beardtongue
• Penstemon spectabilis, N Showy Penstemon
38. Salvia species Sage
• Salvia Africana lutea Dune Sage
• Salvia chamaedryoides Gernander Sage
• Salvia clevelandii, N Cleveland Sage
• Salvia leucantha Mexican Bush Sage
• Salvia greggii Autumn Sage
39. Tagetes, perennial Perennial Marigold
• Tagetes lemmonii Copper Canyon Daisy
• Tagetes lucida Mexican Tarragon
40. Verbena peruviana Peruvian Verbena
41. Arbutus ‘Marina’ Strawberry Tree
42. Butia capitata Pindo Palm
43. Chitalpa tashkentensis , N Chitalpa
44. Geijera parviflora Australian Willow
45. Lagerstroemia indica Crape Myrtle
46. Laurus nobilis Sweet Bay
47. Olea europaea ‘Swan Hill’ Fruitless Olive
48. Parkinsonia x ’Desert Museum’ Desert Museum Palo Verde
49. Pistacia chinensis Chinese Pistache
50. Quercus agrifolia, N Coast Live Oak
With San Diegans facing water rationing in the near future, the County of San Diego may soon mandate drought-tolerant and fire-resistant landscaping for all new construction projects in unincorporated areas. The San Diego Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to consider stricter landscape requirements that would swap thirsty vegetation with varieties that use less water and can slow the spread of fire. Apparently in San Diego 60 percent of residential water usage goes toward watering of landscapes. By requiring water-wise and fire-wise landscaping, the County can help San Diegans save water, protect homes and even save money.
Many parts of California are arid and face record drought and dwindling water supplies. Although you may or may not be able to change out your existing landscape to a water-wise landscape, there are a few simple things you can to conserve water in your yard.
- Adjust the timer clock for your irrigation system if you have one. Make sure it is not going off to often for the time of year it is. In the winter months you may even be able to get away with once a week.
- If it is raining, turn off your irrigation.
- Mulch around base of plants to keep the moisture in the ground
- When possible, use Cactus, succulents, California natives and other lush plants that don’t require as much water.
- Group plants together that have similar water needs
- Plant in the fall if you can, then plants can get established before the heat of summer comes. Plants will need less water once they are established.
- Minimize turf. There are so many great alternatives to traditional lawn and many of them are very attractive.
- Water before dawn and after dusk to reduce water loss due to the increased evaporation during the middle of the day
If you are considering installing a new landscape, David Pedersen in Orange County, California, is qualified and educated in sustainable landscapes. Water wise landscapes don’t have to consist of just cactus any more. There are California natives, succulents and many colorful and lush plants that use little amounts of water. See the link to Dave’s website if you wish to contact him.