Garden of brief notes.

The meadow is bugging me.

I'm going to clean this up.

Why can't it look like this?

For one thing, the grasses I picked are too-tall and weedy-looking. I'm talking to you Nassella pulchra. I think you belong in a bigger space. In the small city garden, you are busy and messy--at least in my hands. We can be friends, but we can't be best friends. You're fired.

For the time being, I'm keeping your smaller cousin Nassella cernua, and the more elegant (but also too tall) Calfiornia fescue (Festuca californica). But I'm putting you both on notice as well. You better shape up. If not, I'm boxing the meadow concept and planting perennials instead.

Note: The discourse above is me being uncharacteristically resolved about what to do. For example, if I think about this for very much longer, I could easily convince myself to go the other way. "What this area needs is more, taller native bunch grasses! There aren't enough of them to bring off the look! No half-measures!"

And then a few minutes later, it's back to ripping everything out and planting perennials. I can work myself into quite a tizzy.

For now let's just look away...

The crimson-flowering fava bean flowers are fragrant at a distance.

Crimson flowering fava

And what a fine crimson.

Crimson flowering fava

I'm v. happy with this plant. Thanks you Michelle at From Seed to Table for turning me on to it.

Aeonium 'Schwartzkopf' has gone green again. I can't keep this black Aeonium black.


I'm not too worried about these nasturtium vines. Nasturtium can be aggressive in our climate, but I can handle it.


Near here, Cestrum elegans is about to bloom.

Cestrum elegans

This is my third Cestrum. I gave C. auranticum a whirl and didn't care for it's drab flowers. Heavy-scented C. nocturnum never even made flowers. This one seems to be on the right track.

In the meantime it's raining. We're getting lots of good rain--moderate amounts, regularly delivered with several dry days in between.

I have no complaints about winter.


Anonymous said...

You're lucky. We're getting torrential amounts of rain, for way too many days in a row. My garden was already more than 50% underwater this morning, and with all the pouring I hear out there now, I fear it must be up to 90%. I do have complaints about winter!

Tira said...

The crimson-flowering fava bean flowers are a gorgeous color, the plant looks elegant and you may get beans to eat, yet!

Christopher C. NC said...

How nice you are having regular moderate deliveries of liquid forms of water for winter.

CiNdEe's GaRdEn said...

Wow things that are alive!
Dead here.
Everything looks terrible.
We had a huge rain/wind storm last night. Not sure of damage yet because I have not been out there.
I do enjoy winter for the most part! We need rain and lots of it!

Anonymous said...

I agree about the grasses, Chuck, they need to be all tall or all short, or all medium. The fava is fantastic, so much prettier than the white. We decided against them this year, but if we had known about the red flowers....

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

I love the fava! I had no idea they were that pretty.
We're heading to SF tomorrow, hopefully we'll be there for the dry days since we've had plenty of rain to look at here.

Noelle Johnson said...

The fava been flowers are stunning. I think it is so true that a garden is never truly finished. We try new things and see what works and then pull out the rest ;-)

Brent said...

I'm glad to have independent confirmation that N. pulchra was the wrong choice for California State Grass, at least from the gardener perspective.

Unknown said...

I appreciate the advice on the grasses. I have an are at the office I'm thinking of for something like that. Love the crimson fava as well. Gotta love the natural irrigation lately. Looks like it's going to continue for awhile.