Showing posts from October, 2022

Late-afternoon snapshots from our garden

One of the best features of fall is the golden light of late afternoon. The way it backlights and sidelights the (spiky) plants in our garden is nothing short of spectacular. Here is an assemblage of snapshots taken over the last few days to show you what I mean. This is one of those instances where I’m glad I’m a maximalist when it comes to the garden, squeezing far more plants into a small space than conventional “wisdom” dictates. All I can say is this: Long live cramscaping! What you see as you enter the front garden from the driveway Hechtia ‘Silver Star’, a hybrid between Hechtia argentea and Hechtia marnier-lapostollei Hechtia ‘Silver Star’ and Agave nickelsiae Hechtia argentea Ferocactus pilosus , Agave applanata ‘Cream Spike’, Aloe peglerae One of my favorite views Dasylirion longissimum in tall Corten planter, Hechtia ‘Silver Star’ (yes, another one) bottom left, and Hechtia ‘Oaxaca Sunset’ bottom right Hechtia ‘Silver Star’ top, Agave parrasana ‘Fireball’ bottom × M

Patricia Carpenter's garden sanctuary in the country

Patricia Carpenter has been a gardener for almost 50 years. She created her first garden as a student in the UC Davis Community Garden. Since then, she has accumulated a lifetime of experience, knowledge and, yes, wisdom. And yet, after having seen and done it all, she’s as excited about plants as somebody just starting out. Her enthusiasm is infectious, and she and I have become fast friends after running into each at various UC Davis Arboretum functions and events. Recently I had the opportunity to visit Patricia’s garden out in the country west of town. It’s a peaceful spot, bordered in the front by fields and in the back by a slough and more agricultural land beyond. And the neighbors on either side are far enough away that she enjoys a level of privacy we city dwellers can only dream of. Patricia’s own garden (the focus of this post) is 1 acre, divided into multiple areas with plants ranging from natives to exotics and vegetables. It’s a lush and exuberant testament to Patricia’s