Archive for January, 2010

The Conservatory

Barbara: This week marks the fourth week of my Master Gardener training. So far it’s been an incredible whirlwind of learning. In the last few days we’ve been privileged to hear three of the most amazing botany lectures given by two brilliant teachers; John Lenanton, a professor of Nursery Practices and Horticulture at Orange Coast College, and Dr. Jim Folsom, Director of the Huntington Botanical Gardens.

Boy, can these guys teach! The lectures were crammed full of great stuff. I’m agog with all the information. It’s coming at us like a freight train and I’m loving every minute of it. I have learned SO much  — amazing, magical things. I feel like I’ve been given the keys to the kingdom. And what’s even better, there’s more to come! I’ll be posting some of the nuggets soon.

In the meantime here are a few pictures that I took at the Gardens. For more follow this link to Flickr. And the next time you’re in Southern California make plans to spend the day at the Huntington Botanical Gardens in San Marino. They are so very beautiful.


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Barbara: My sister and my friends are sooo tired of listening to me whine about the wimpy light in my garden. On and on I go about the shade, the eucalyptus trees surrounding my property, the plants I could grow if only, if only, I had more light.

Well, someone was listening. Powerful storms have been tearing through Southern California. It’s been an amazing week of howling winds and pounding rain. Three inches fell between Thursday and Friday morning — a lot for our part of the world.

Tuesday was the wildest day, though. Sheets of rain were blowing across the yard and the eucs were twisting in the wind. There was a groan and a thud.  A 25′ branch crashed down, glancing along the roof line and taking out a section of the gutter before landing in front of my door.

As I looked out at the mess, I heard a loud crack and a second branch smashed the fence into pieces.

I decided to retreat to the back of the house until the storm calmed down. Fortunately we’ve had only a few smaller branches fall since then. The fence has been repaired and the clean up crew will be here early next week to take away the debris.

But here’s the kicker. The sun came out for a few minutes yesterday and I have light in my garden! This changes everything.

Soon I’ll be rethinking my garden plan and moving some of the shade-loving plants. Then I’ll have to figure out what to plant in the sunny spots. But I’m NOT complaining.

It was kind of scary getting here, but this is going to be fun. As Mary Beth said, “Be careful what you wish for.” Seems I put an order in and it was filled.

Life is always so interesting.

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