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December 9, 2019

Some plants seem transformed by our winter rain.

The leaves of this Baja fairy duster Calliandra californica are beaded with raindrops.

This drought tolerant evergreen is native to Baja California, and produces scarlet red tufted flowers nearly all year round.

It provid...

December 2, 2019

It's been raining non-stop for several days now.

During the heavy showers the birds are hunkering down in the trees.

But when the rain is light, the birds venture out.

This afternoon I observed this Anna's hummingbird visit the Chiapas salvia shrub for nectar.

The Chiapas...

November 29, 2019

What a relief!

The atmospheric rivers are here, bringing in all that moisture from the Pacific.

Here in Northern California we've been very worried, wondering if we would get our winter rain.

This is a great start.

Yes, it can be wild and woolly weather at times, but oh,...

November 26, 2019

Some of the California poppies are blooming again.

I cut the poppy plants back several times this year when the stems and foliage dried up.

Now that we have had cooler weather with foggy mornings, the plants seem refreshed, with green foliage.

The blossoms are so brillian...

November 20, 2019

Among dormant plants in the garden the bright yellow of the first blossoms on the golden yarrow Eriophyllum confertiflorum are such a cheerful sight.

The plant produced these lovely blossoms this week.

I almost gave up on the it, after it remained dormant after blooming...

November 18, 2019

When our Halloween pumpkins started to get squishy and moldy, I distributed them in pieces throughout the garden to decompose and feed the soil.

And look at what's happening two weeks later.

All that looks like grass are California poppy seedlings!

What a pleasant surpris...

November 4, 2019

A month ago we still had a group of monarch caterpillars on the Narrow-leaf milkweed plants Asclepias fascicularis. I meant to cut down all of the milkweed mid-September, as per the recommendation of the Xerces Society, but a mama monarch kept visiting and laying eggs.


October 29, 2019

Butterflies held their own in spite of the very strong gusts of wind yesterday.

They navigated well through the powerful air currents, and easily landed on leaves and flowers.

Here a cabbage white rests on a nasturtium leaf.

And a painted lady spent time on future ivy ber...

October 26, 2019

The warm October weather keeps the pollinators around, as long as we there is nectar and pollen to be had.

Many of the native bees seem to already have gone into hibernation, since most of their food sources are now dormant. But the honey bees are still out and about.


October 25, 2019

When the brown-eyed bushtits descend upon the garden they always travel in flocks of at least twelve. There is always a lot of activity and twittering as they fly through the foliage, picking insects off leaves and blossoms.


This individual was dining on a meal of ins...

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bees in the bay breeze

For years I have been sharing ideas, gardening tips and recipes  with family, friends and colleagues.

And now I'd like to share them with you!


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December 9, 2019