A few quick updates

Today I want to update you on a few previous posts.

>> Bye bye Mexican bush sage <<

After I planted the compact cenizo (Leucophyllum frutescens), I added a Grevillea ‘Austraflora Fanfare’ (Grevillea gaudichaudii × longifolia). This prostrate Australian shrub with attractive sawtooth leaves stays under a foot in height but can spread to 15 ft. across, making it ideal as a groundcover (I intend to shape it as needed). It produces red toothbrush-shaped flowers from spring to late fall. Actually the specimen I plant is just now starting to bloom; I should have updated photos soon.


Grevillea ‘Austraflora Fanfare’


Grevillea ‘Austraflora Fanfare’

>> Changes ahead <<

I removed the Fatsia japonica that had been damaged by some caterpillar this spring as well as the creeping wire vine (Muehlenbeckia axillaris) that had pretty much covered the entire container. I thought a fresh start would be the best. Not knowing what to plant, I went to Green Acres Nursery in Sacramento and found a beautiful lacy tree fern (Cyathea cooperi) in a 5-gallon container. While not very hardy, it should do just fine in this location under the bay trees. Plus, it’s easy to throw a frost blanket over it on the coldest nights.


Cyathea cooperi


>>New backyard succulent bed <<

On my way back from the Ruth Bancroft Garden fall plant sale last Saturday, I swung by Lowe’s and picked up four bags of California Gold rocks for the succulent bed I recently created in the backyard. I like the texture the rocks add to this bed. Plus, they prevent the soil from washing away when I water. I can’t wait to see what this area looks like this time next year!





>> Ruth Bancroft Garden fall plant sale wrap-up <<

I love the two aeoniums I got at the Ruth Bancroft Garden fall plant sale last Saturday at 30% off. They were positively bursting out of their 1-gallon containers. I planted one (labeled Aeonium rubrolineatum) in our new backyard succulent bed (see middle photo in the update above). The other (Aeonium canariense) went in a terracotta cylinder I snagged at Panama Pottery’s closeout sale. I can’t believe these plants were only $4.20 each!


Aeonium canariense

This container is next to our front door now and several people have commented that the rosettes look like green flowers.


  1. I do love that Aeonium/cylindrical pot combo!

  2. The aeonium looks perfect for the container! Looking forward to seeing how all these areas progress in the next few months. The Cyathea cooperi I reckon will be alright in our location, even if all fronds get frosted away it should leaf out strongly in the spring.

  3. Your succulent planters are going to look awesome! I spent the weekend on my backyard too. Went and bought 2 water troughs only to find out I needed 2 2 X2X6 when I only got one and another smaller one. Now I have to go back. But that will give me a chance to go to Cascade rock and get some of the red lava rock for top dressing!

    I love the color of rocks you got. Funny but I got the same ones this weekend. They are so pretty in a succulent bed. And $4.20 for a huge plant like that is awesome. Great find!


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