gravel garden path Gardening 

Early Summer Gardens in Full Riot

By Josh Reilly It’s peak season in San Lorenzo Valley gardens. Roses, salvias, Jerusalem sage, irises, poppies, lavenders, yuccas, succulents, penstemons, sedums, Peruvian lilies and ground covers like creeping Thyme are all in full riot. Azaleas and rhododendrons are lighting up shady corners. Pelargoniums and geraniums (often confused) are going off like fireworks. Long blooming standbys like Erigeron will be… Read More
Wisteria Arbor pathway Columns Gardening 

Spring Gardening: Arbors and Trellises

By Josh Reilly “Arbors and Trellises” sounds like the title of a 70s soft-rock album, brimming with meaning. A reference to lofty, light weight, airy structures, often geometric and angular in form, but built to provide living space for winding, cascading plants, all curves and knots, billows and waves, tendrils and holdfasts. Things that prefer to live up in the breeze.… Read More
H Orientalis Lenten Roses Ben Lomond Columns Gardening 

A March Garden

by Josh Reilly In February, a gardener’s anticipation borders on intolerable. Especially in those parts of the SLV subject to frost. A lot of what we see growing happily in Santa Cruz, right now, undamaged by frost, is under threat here. Alas, many winter-flowering plants are a lost cause here, with a few very worthwhile exceptions (see below). Flower buds… Read More
February Gardeing Columns Gardening 

February in the Garden

By Marielle Martin Gardening in the beautiful Santa Cruz Mountains means contending with a variety of microclimates and conditions. We have forested mountainous terrain offering sunlight challenges, a marine influence, and a range of soil types. Fortunately, our temperate climate makes for a longer gardening season and a variety of plants thrive here. In general, our frost-free season begins the… Read More
Winter gardening Central California Columns Gardening 

Soil’s Renewed Purpose

The Ben Lomond Gardener By Uncle Skip It is not easy to express the joy and relief a gardener feels with the season’s first real rain. You’ve spent months zealously tracking temperatures and watching your plants for the least hint of water stress. You might have overwatered, a time or two, just to be safe. You might also have watched,… Read More
Ben Lomond Gardener Gardening 

Focus on Fall

The Ben Lomond Gardener By Uncle Skip Early Fall is a critical season for garden planning and renovation. Bulbs must be planted or lifted and divided. Perennials, herbs, and shrubs are best planted in advance of Fall rains (oh please, dear goddess).  Next year’s sweet peas, garlic, chives, and onions should be started now (or soon). Now’s the time to… Read More