Blog

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Howdy, I’m Scott.
This site was originally a place where I could store info and links for quick access. I still use it as a way to gather my notes, keep my gardening journal, and remember some trips I’ve taken. Hopefully it’s grown into something you’ll find useful!

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Locations

Joshua Tree and South Coast Botanic Garden, mostly!

A hearty patch of pinkladies growing in Hesse Park

City Nature Challenge Wrap-up

The City Nature Challenge is over! I can’t wait until next year, to check up on how these plants are doing. And to add a few more to my collection. Congratulations to everyone who took part! I’m always so happy when a big number of people turn out for nature.

A handful of snails and barnacles down at Pelican Cove

Palos Verdes – City Nature Challenge

Get your portable phones and cool cameras ready for a five-day bioblitz style event! From April 30th to May 3rd, be on the lookout to log and identify all the plants and animals you can possibly find in the Palos Verdes area.

A section of the desert that looks out over snowy peaks

DRECP – Renewable Energy in SoCal’s Deserts

The powers-that-be want to streamline a process where desert land can be handed over to energy developers who want to invest in clean energy infrastructure. They’ve written a plan – the DRECP (Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan) – to delineate what is allowed to go where.

A small rainstorm out over the ocean off Los Angeles

Roundup – January’s End

A look back at what’s happened in January, both in the wider environment and in my own garden. Most notably – the LA smog is back, my garden has new LED grow lights, and South Coast Botanic Garden’s GLOW event is over.

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Appreciating Nature

Posts focusing on the joy and wonder that nature has in spades!

A ginkgo biloba enjoying the morning sunlight

An Introduction to Mindful Gardening

Gardening is a wonderful way to practice mindfulness. We care for plants as best we can, giving them the chance to grow. We can practice mindfulness, giving our thoughts room to grow.

A bee goes to work on a passionfruit flower

10 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day

Every year, we celebrate Earth Day on April 22. This is a day for the earth: for cleaning, remembering, and planning to ensure a positive future for nature. During past Earth Days, events such as river cleanings and the clearing of invasive species has often taken the mainstage in drawing communities together. This year, the holiday is going digital.

A sunflower seedling alone in a large pot outdoors

March Garden Roundup

Spring has finally sprung in the garden, and everything is getting growing. Most of the seedlings have been transplanted to their long-term homes (at least until they end up in the kitchen…). Check out the post to see how all the plants are getting along!

Paperwhites blooming at the very end of February

End of February Garden Roundup

February has been a busy month in the balcony garden. Cress has grown even faster than the Paperwhites. Tomato seedlings put on mass at the same time as Sunflowers. And the Billy Balls never disappoint. Check out the Garden Updates here!

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The How-To

A pair of paperwhites growing strong into spring!

The Sun and its Angles

Plants really enjoy sunlight – some more so than others. When you’re planting a plant outdoors, it’s useful to know what ‘Full Sun’ means on the seed packet, and whether your corner of the balcony or yard is going to get it. Find out where to look up the sun’s angles and how to apply it!

The cress is growing in thickly and very green

(Garden) Cress

Garden Cress is an easygoing, cold-tolerant, tasty plant that can be harvested and eaten at any point in its growing cycle. Easy to care for, harvest as needed with a pair of scissors. Find out how to grow this slightly tangy salad green!

Spearmint looking healthy and ready to grow in spring

Mint

Growing mint in a container isn’t only easy – it’s also recommended! Mint is a delicious, voracious weed that can be grown from divisions, cuttings, or seeds. Find out how to care for mint here!

Paperwhites blooming at the very end of February

Paperwhites

If you’ve ever grown daffodils, you’re not far off from growing a Paperwhite! These lovely little flowers grow from bulbs, and are even open to blooming in winter. Find out how to grow them in water or soil!

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Other Updates

Notes on my garden, events, and other topics!

The taller wildflowers are starting to bloom with big, feathery purple flowers

Six on Saturday – 19 Jun, 2021

All the flowers are finally showing life! The second heat wave seems to be agreeing with them, and they’re coming up… well, not roses. A bunch of other things instead! Even the ever-dominant thyme is flowering. There’s plenty of new leaves to share.

The billy buttons are getting mixed up with the paperwhites

Six on Saturday – 12 Jun, 2021

Summer has simmered down for a bit with the onslaught of June Gloom. The plants that woke up during the brief warm spell have continued their reach for the sun with no signs of stopping. It’s a race to see who flowers first!

The tomato plant is blooming in clusters of yellow

Six on Saturday – 5 Jun, 2021

The air’s heating up out here, jumping up to about 90F on some days. It’s not quite where it will be once we’re up into July and August, but for now the garden is having a happy time of it. They hadn’t quite gotten along with the cold, strong winds of late winter. Now they’re having a wonderful time sunning and getting a green tan.

A calathea beauty star shows off its leaves

Six on Saturday – 29 May, 2021

Memorial Day is just around the corner! That means summer is coming up fast. The garden is blooming and the leaves are… greening? Everywhere I turn, it seems like there’s a little less room for me on the balcony. The plants are taking over.

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