Newsletter for July 2021

Color the garden for summer. We have myriad delights to enhance your outdoor living. Two really popular plants: Dahlia and Agastache. We have an awesome variety of Dahlias including some of the giant flowered dinner plate types. There are smaller varieties with single flowers and dark leaves and doubles with both green and black leaves. One of our favorites is Black Dahlegria Apricot Tri-color. We have a rather good selection of Agastache as well. Colors vary from red to apricot to lavender to red. They have a rather pungent odor and should be resistant to deer.

Grasses are always a great addition to the landscape. Stipa ichu and Ampelodesmos (‘Mauritania Vine Reed) are both evergreen with thin, arching blades. The flowers differ greatly, however. Ichu has silky delicate silver wands, reaching about 4 feet. Ampelodesmos, on the other hand, has wheat colored, one sided flowers that can reach 6 or 7 feet. Its common name comes from a previous use; the leaves were used to tie together grapevines. Both add a dramatic touch to the garden.

Seems people have all but forgotten ‘Soil Moist’ so here’s a reminder as to what this amazing product can do. It’s a great way to save time and water, especially for your container plants. ‘Soil Moist’ granules can soak up to 200 times their weight in water and then slowly release the water for your plant roots.

Annuals that defy the heat – Vinca and Zinnia. Vincas abound in 6 packs, 4″ pots, gallons and hanging baskets. Cool new colors have been added. Besides the usual white, pink red and fuchsia now available are very interesting shades called ‘Tattoo Black Cherry’ and ‘Tattoo Papaya’. Zinnias differ in size as well as in color. Smallest is the ‘Starbright’ series with white, yellow and orange flowers. Next we have ‘Profusion’ reaching about 12″ creating bright mounds of color. ‘Dreamland’ and ‘Magellan’ are mid-size, about 18 to 24″ in height. Finally, the star – ‘State Fair’ on tall stems 3 to 4 feet.

We all anxiously await the first crop of juicy, luscious tomatoes. Perhaps you’re thinking there should be more tomatoes on the vine. Voila! a technical breakthrough. It comes in the form of an electric toothbrush! This wonder product mimics the movement of bees – a slight buzz on the flower will almost insure pollination. You can find examples on YouTube. I’m afraid Bay Laurel does not stock this item.

We’ve finally been able to acquire Dymondia – a tough, very low growing ground cover with variegated leaves and yellow daisy-type flowers. It should be planted about 12″ apart. Water requirements are quite low. In addition to various ground cover flats, we have 4″ and 6 pack varieties suitable for small areas like ‘Betty Rollins’ Oregano and for the shade Golden Oregano. Erodium with white or pink flowers is available in 6 packs. Lime Thyme can form an attractive bright chartreuse accent to your plantings.

Groovy hats for sun protection.

We are pleased to announce the availability of Garvineas in 4″ pots. These Gerbera hybrids are great in containers and bloom from spring through fall. Other great finds in 4″ containers include one the most drought tolerant California natives, Salvia apiana. We have a new Scabiosa with giant white flowers. Several varieties of Lavender are available plus Gazanias, Echinacea and Rudbeckia.

One might think Cistus (Rock Rose) is a California native as well as it does in some of our severest situations. Cistus is actually a Mediterranean plant. We have a good supply at the moment – low growing salvlifolius to purpureus, 5 feet tall and wide. Of course there’s always a place for California natives. Penstemon ‘Margarita Bop’ is one of the showier species. For sturdy, permanent plantings, go to the Manzanitas, Toyon and Coffee Berries.

Newsletter for June 2021

The Buddleias or “Butterfly Bush” has been extremely popular this season. And for so many reasons! They come in an array of many colors – dark purple, lavender, fuchsia and white. Additionally, they emit a very sweet fragrance. There are a wide range of sizes available. Two of the taller varieties are ‘Black Knight’ and ‘Royal Red’. Both have arching stems growing 6 to 8 ft. long. The ‘Buzz’ plants have flowers in sky blue, velvet and hot raspberry with heights of 3 to 5 feet. ‘Miss Molly’ and ‘Miss Violet’ grow to 4 or 5 ft. ‘Pugster’ is the dwarf of the bunch reaching only 2 to 3 feet with flowers pink, amethyst, periwinkle and white.

One of the really popular Zinnias is ‘State Fair’ and unfortunately they have been basically unavailable in 6 packs. The almost identical one is ‘Benary’s Giant’. These, however, are only sold as 4″ plants. We do have a pretty good replacement for ‘State Fair’ in 6 packs called ‘Zesty’. The plants are not as tall, 18 to 24″ but they have very large, colorful flowers and should be good for cutting.

Vegetables and herbs are still available – the supply a bit more limited as the planting season for summer is almost over. This week we expect a variety of sweet peppers – red, yellow and orange, including some of the small, ” lunch box” type. We have finally been able to acquire the grape tomato ‘Juliet’ which has a large following. ‘Stupice’ is a small, great tasting tomato which fruits very early and produces for a long time. Look for starts of melons, pumpkins and squash.

It seems we have lots of gourmet cooks in our midst – herbs have been selling furiously! Basil most certainly tops the list. Parsley and chives are also much sought after. Tarragon is popular but we can only find it occasionally. The most decorative variety of Thyme is the variegated lemon; we also have plain lemon plus English and French. Lime Thyme can also be used as an attractive ground cover. Doesn’t everyone have Rosemary?

Amongst our roses you will find two charming ones with clusters of small, bright red flowers. ‘Red Ribbons’ is a ground cover type, 24″ to 30″ tall with a spread of 5 to 7 feet. The flower clusters contain small 2″ double ruffled bright red flowers. The disease resistant rose has glossy, dark green foliage. A new variety from Monrovia, ‘Grace ‘N Grit’ is an upright shrub rose, It is advertised to endure a long, hot summer with unwavering blooming zeal! This disease resistant rose is grown on its own roots and is considered to be self-cleaning – no deadheading!

Maximize your plants! Treat them to some nurturing fertilizer. ‘Ferti-lome Blooming and Rooting’ will help produce abundant flowers. Use organic and organic-based vegetable food for a bigger, better crop. Green up those yellow leaves with iron or nitrogen and add some acid food for your blueberries. Don’t forget to indulge your roses every 6 weeks. You will be surprised at the improvements!

Dahlias are here! Lots of colors, including bi-colors and many with dramatic, dark leaves. Expect them to bloom for the season – keep dead heading. and feeding. Most will return next year unless you have heavy soil. Then it’s best to remove the tubers and keep in a dry, cool place to avoid rot. A new and unusual variety is ‘Mega-Bloom Berry Blast’. A tidy, well-branched plant topped with massive blooms for a dense display. A perfect fit an 8″ container or larger.

Chilopsis is a lovely native shrub. It will eventually reach 15 to 20 feet tall. The small, colorful flowers are similar to cattleya orchids. In time it will develop shaggy bark and a twisting trunk. It can be pruned to enhance a picturesque shape. Our native selection changes weekly. In time of drought, what better things to plant?

A new rather elegant bird feeder. We also carry humming bird feeders. Other aids to help the wild creatures – native milkweeds for the Monarch butterflies and a handout with information for bee friendly plants.

Can’t take the heat? Step into the shade house. View the Hydrangeas, ferns, Heucheras (Coral Bells) and more. Atop the tables you’ll find Coleus in 4″ pots and 6 packs, Begonias, Impatiens, Ipomoeas (Sweet potato vines) in two colors plus Pelargoniums (Geraniums). What used to be called ‘Martha Washington’ Geraniums has been revised to ‘Regal’. A new variety arriving this week is called ‘Pinkerbell’.

Newsletter for May 2021

The changing palette of California native plants. We have blooming perennials including the Penstemon ‘Margareta Bop’ discovered at the Las Pilitas Nursery in Santa Margarita. The brilliant colors make it a local favorite Mimulus ‘Eleanor’, at sub-shrub growing 2 – 3 feet tall, has buttery yellow flowers with white margins and orange markings. It is attractive to bees and butterflies. We also have a good selections of manzanitas and a few California redbuds, plus some Salvia Apiana compacta. This salvia is one of the most drought resistant of all salvias.

Strawberries have been incredibly popular this season and we’ve had a great selection with many varieties. They include Sequoia, Albion, Seascape, Chandler and Elan – one of the newer varieties for us. The plants are very vigorous, producing many runners and the medium sized, conical berries are particularly sweet. They are considered ever-bearing, producing fruit from June to frost. Also great for hanging baskets.

Be sure to keep the crown of the plant above soil level; also provide good drainage. Sow bugs and slugs consider the fruit a treat: ‘Sluggo Plus’ is an excellent preventative. Birds can also be a problem: cover with netting or chicken wire. To avoid rotting fruit, lay down a layer of straw or plastic. You will find your home grown berries above and beyond any store bought strawberries!

It’s been a bit of struggle to obtain ground covers this year, but things seem to be improving. For sunny areas we have flats of ice plant and rosemary. Elfin thyme is available in 6 packs – It’s a very compact, tight growing variety of thyme. Woolly thyme is low growing but more spreading than the elfin variety. Shade ground covers include both minor and major Vinca. The major variety is great if you have a very large area to cover. Also here is the variegated Vinca minor – a bit showier than the all green ones and good for smaller areas. Ajuga is also suitable for smaller areas and provides lovely blue flowers in the spring.

What’s happening in the shade house at Bay Laurel Garden Center? On the shelves you will find mostly colorful annuals including Bacopa, Coleus, Ipomoea (Sweet potato vine), Begonias and Impatiens. These annuals should bloom throughout the summer. The few hardy perennial plants to be found are tuberous Begonias, Heuchera (Coral Bells) and Astilbe. Pelargoniums (Geraniums) can often be overwintered, depending on the winter temperatures and their location (sheltering helps). A very showy Alstroemeria with red flowers and variegated foliage can jazz up your containers.

A few suggestions for Mother’s Day May 9th

Protection from gophers is indispensable unless you are among the rare few who have escaped their wrath. We can offer three choices. The first, flexible mesh, is the easiest to use. These are the only type that offer 4″ baskets as well as 1 and 5 gallon. The least expensive, pieces of chick wire you put together yourself, can protect 1, 5 and 15 gallon plants. The “Root Guard” baskets are state of the art – they are stronger and more durable – also for 1, 5 and 15 gallon plants.

Vegetables and herbs are flying out the door! We finally received some lemon cucumbers. We have lots of tomatoes – the tried and true including Celebrity, Early Girl and Better Boy. Then there’s Chocolate Sprinkles and French Piglet Black Cherry. One gallon vegetables have been quite popular to speed up the season. We’ll keep adding to the mix whenever plants are available.

New plants stakes from a local artisan. They change monthly so stop in and see what we have at Bay Laurel Garden Center.

The essence of summer – the sunflower and back with us this year is ‘Sunfinity’. The plant, which is pollen free, grows to 3 or 4 feet, and the blooms are excellent for cutting. ‘Sunfinity’ has a very long bloom season, and you can plant it in a container or in the ground. We also have some Monrovia ‘Sunbeleivable’ from time to time as well as the 4″ Titan variety – the really tall one. We’ll hope for additional varieties as the season progresses.

Newsletter for April 2021

Among the many glories of spring – flowering trees. We have some lovely specimens of cherries, crabapples and plums. Of course, fruiting trees also have their beautiful blossoms. We potted the fruit trees that remained from the bareroot season and have brought in some additional varieties. New this week, compact blueberries that make perfect container plants. Don’t forget the acid potting soil.

Have you noticed those tiny fruits on your peach and nectarine trees? If so, it’s time to prevent the Tarnished Plant Bug (Lygus lineolaris) from defacing the adult fruit. Several options include the insecticide Monterey’s ‘Take Down’ and horticultural oil. Nectarines seem to be the most susceptible. Apple blossoms will appear next and with them the coddling moths. Traps can be used to detect them and if you have only one or two trees this may eradicate them. Otherwise we recommend using the above mentioned remedies.

Summer annuals are slowly arriving – the usual petunias, marigolds, lobelia plus some more unusual items as Nicotiana, Queen Anne’s Lace, Godetia, Linaria and Lisianthus. The shade house is looking particularly colorful. You will find ‘Ruby Slipper’ Coleus, zonal and ivy geraniums plus Fuchsia ‘Autumnale’ – a variety with colorful leaves and two shades of Bacopa.

We were fortunate to have a successful bareroot season. The unsold roses have been potted up but we receive many requests for other varieties. Therefore, we are currently trying to supply the demand. If you have a rose on your list, let us know and we’ll see if it’s available.

The desire for native California plants grows every year. Manzanitas are always at the top of the list. This year we have one of the largest selections of 15 gallon plants ever. The varieties include ‘St. Helena’, ‘Louis Edmonds’ and ‘Sentinel’. You’ve undoubtedly noticed the glorious blooms on the Ceanothus. These plants can be somewhat short lived, but they are nevertheless really worth if for their spring show.

Have you ever seen a friendlier sun?

The world of succulents is gigantic. We stock lots of different varieties. Shown here is Sedeveria ‘Jet Beads’. The plant is a cross between Sedum and Echeveria. It’s great for containers – the leaves turn a copper color in the winter. Aside from container planting. we also carry six packs of ground cover types with varying shades of flowers – yellow, white, pink. All quite drought tolerant.

Wow! We have a lot of vegetable gardeners around these parts. Tomatoes and peppers rank high on the desirability list. For herbs, basil and parsley. But you will also see squash, cucumbers, corn, beans and much more trickling in week by week. Also arriving, many gallon tomatoes for the impatient tomato lover. Included are the newest hybrids – ‘Marriage’ tomatoes. These are two crosses of heirloom varieties. The advantages include improved vigor, earlier and greater production.

Newsletter for March 2021

Time to say farewell to another bareroot season. The few remaining fruit trees will be potted up. Still available are several figs, pomegranates and shade trees. The roses are newly situated in biodegradable containers ready to be planted. It’s almost time for “Lady Banks” roses to put on their show. They only bloom in spring but it’s spectacular! Flowers in yellow or white. Later in the season we will be adding additional varieties.

Vegetable starts are always in demand and the supply changes constantly. We have started to carry some summer varieties with a warning to protect them from the cold; we’re still experiencing some freezing temperatures which make peppers, tomatoes and basil extremely unhappy! Currently in stock, 3″ Seascape strawberries. Strawberries are extremely popular and we’ll bring them in whenever they’re available.

Some tips from two of our in-house gardeners: Joaquin Gardens in Santa Margarita. His basic method is Perma-culture. The following is his recipe for super vegetables. 5 – 15% bone meal, for nitrogen; 5 – 10% bat guano, blood meal or chicken manure; 5% kelp meal; 10% or more earthworm castings; 3 – 5% humic acid; and 5 – 15% oyster shell (calcium). He’s had great success with a method called “hugelkultur” which originated in Austria. This method has been very successful growing squash varieties. The basic premise is to build a mound on top of rotting wood. Check out the article at .

Jeff does his gardening here at the nursery in containers. He’s had great results using “smart pots”. These fiber based containers are known for promoting excellent root growth. His soil preferences are bales of “Raised Bed” planting mix or “Formula 420”. He incorporates Vermi-compost and Dr. Earth Vegetable fertilizer throughout the season.

Native California plants are always an important section of the nursery. We have lots of the basics – coffee berries, manzanitas and Ceanothus. The lovely blue flowers of the Ceanothus are about to bloom. These gorgeous plants are not always terribly long-lived but they make an excellent accent in the garden. We currently have some Ribes sanguineum ‘King Edward VII’, deciduous shrubs which do well with a bit of shade. The perennial Eriophyllum lanatum ‘Siskyou’ features gray leaves and bright yellow flowers.

Don’t to forget to plant summer blooming bulbs. We still have some lovely dahlia tubers. Shown here one of the most fragrant of all bulbs – tuberose. Next to it, “Gladiolus orchids” a diminutive variety of the old fashioned Gladiola – we have some of those as well.

We’re gradually restocking the nursery. The bins will soon be filled with trees, shrubs and perennials. Coleonemas are popular spring blooming shrubs. A bit hard to detect in the picture are three different varieties. The most common is Coleonema pulchrum which grows to 5 or 6 feet. The smaller one is C. pulchrum compactum. This plant grows about 3 feet tall. The remaining variety is C .’Sunset Gold’. The leaves are a much lighter shade of green, almost chartreuse. These plants are not the deer’s favorite; at this point we are hesitate to say many things are deer resistant; the deer have recently expanded their palates!

Metal flowers are back. Folks just love ’em.

Gelsemium sempervirens has been a big seller. Aside from the vibrant yellow flowers which bloom in early spring, it’s one of the few evergreen vines that do well in the North County. Solanum jasminoides is another alternative. Star jasmine (Trachylospermum) also fits the requirement but does best with some afternoon shade.

Our artistic employee, Mick, is responsible for the charming cards on display. He’s taken many of the photographs here at the nursery. Add your own greeting inside. The cards are on sale for $4.95.

Newsletter for February 2021

Last chance for bareroot roses. We still have some beauties left – shrubs including Abbaye de Cluny, Liv Tyler and Yves Piaget plus a great selection of tree roses. Amazing how early these plants start to leaf out. And if you haven’t already done so, be sure to prune your existing plants. Open them up and trim off the smallest branches and as soon as they start to show a couple of inches of growth, treat them with some hearty fertilizer. We have several brands available.

Our parched land has finally been hydrated! What a boon for gardeners. (some of the unfortunate aspects of the deluge are also recognized.) The planting opportunities are numerous. Start with spring blooming shrubs. A few of the earliest include Flowering Quince, Lilac and Forsythia. One of the loveliest of perennials is Helleborous. We have some exquisite dark flowered plants in 2 gallon containers and also 1 gallons.

Vegetables? We have a terrific supply. They have arrived in forms old and new. Plant lettuce, brokali, spinach, kale and pink raddichio. Add some tasty herbs to the mix – thyme, rosemary, parsley, chives and more. Beef up your soil with Bumper Crop, add a bit of Vermi-compost and wait for the spring harvest. You might want to start seeds for spring planting. We have bags of seed starter and bio-degradable pots for that very purpose.

Bedding plants add color and delight to the garden. We just brought in bunches of them for your gardening pleasure. We have Iceland poppies, calendulas, snapdragons and of course a great selection of pansies and violas. Be sure and check out the English primroses in the shade house. New this year are the Italian Ranunculus and Anemones. These varieties are known for their large flowers and extended bloom.

We continue to tout the virtues of Garvinea – the hybrid version of the Gerbera. Right now we have a couple of dozen on hand. The flowers are not as large as the typical Gerbera, but they are durable! They withstand frost and bloom for many months. They make great container plants.

A crazy season for bareroot. We are almost out of all fruit trees. Nuts remain. We have some excellent walnut trees – Chandler, Franquette and Pedro and the self fertile almond, All-In-One. The pistachio trees have just arrived. The male (non-bearing) is able to pollinate a harem of up to 10 to 15! We will have more berries, including blueberries in containers later in the season.

A reminder about plants tied to stakes. Be sure to remove the ties that the growers have very tightly attached to your plant. Remove totally if staking is not required; otherwise, re-tie the plants more loosely. It’s much better for the plant to gain strength with some movement. Also, the tie areas can be more susceptible to insect invasions.

It’s the Grevillea time of the year. These tough, very useful plants from the down-under are about to begin their northern hemisphere bloom. Two of the newer varieties are Grevillea juniperini ‘Lava Cascade’ and Grevillea lavandulacea ‘Penola’. The first specimen makes a great flowing ground cover. The plant grows to about 2 feet tall and 6 to10 feet wide with coral-red flowers. ‘Penola’ has gray green needle-like leaves with deep red buds opening to rosy pink, red and cream flowers. The plant will reach 3 to 4 feet tall and 5 to 8 feet wide. These are both excellent plants for the winter garden plus they are evergreen and look quite reputable all year long.

Newsletter for January 2021

Gardening doesn’t stop with winter weather here in California! The time for planting fruit trees, berries and roses has arrived. This particular season compares with last spring – crazy! Our best suggestion is “Don’t wait”. We sold out of many varieties very early this year – check out our bareroot website and find out what is still available. You will not find any roses listed there – we still have them in stock but they’re no longer available for shipping.

Another reminder to spray your peaches and nectarines to prevent the fungus and peach leaf curl. We recommend Liqui-cop. Other suggestions are the addition of Neem oil or use the oil by itself.

January is also prime pruning season and we have the small, inexpensive pruning book available. You can also find lots of help on the internet. We have some gloves designed to protect your hands from the scars of rose thorns, including a charming, floriferous pair.

Those colorful, sturdy annuals that brave the freezing temperatures of the North County are still available to brighten your landscape and containers. You might want to try Cheiranthus (Wallflower) ‘Purple Bi-color Sugar Rush’. The plant is very cold hardy and described as a short-lived perennial. Additionally, we have a great selection of English primroses which do splendidly in the shade.

Newsletter for December 2020

The “Bareroot” season is off and running! The new arrivals, however, are not bareroot at all! The growers have recently grown many offerings in small, quart size pots. Although this has added to the price, the advantages definitely outweigh the cost. The plants do not need to be planted right after purchase and they have a much better chance of survival due to a greater root structure. Here’s what we have right now; berries of all sorts – blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, goji berries, – figs and pomegranates. To see the up-to-date availability for the bareroot plants, go to our website –

The holiday trees are here. (The prehistoric figures amongst them are quite harmless.) We have the usual Nordmann firs and this year, a special variety of the Colorado Blue Spruce, ‘Baby Blue’. This spruce only grows to about 20 feet – in many years. The vivid blue needles make it a great accent. Give it regular water and some afternoon shade in the North County.

Cabbages big and small. We have lovely colors of white, red and pink in 4″ pots. The one shown is in an 8″ container and makes a striking display. Pansies and violas abound, with Calendulas, stock and snapdragons. We still have a great supply of daffodil bulbs to plant now or offer as gifts.

A few suggestions for your holiday shopping.

Don’t forget your fruit trees in the midst of all this merriment. Attempt to head off the insidious “leaf curl” which attacks peaches and nectarins. It is recommended to spray the trees 2 to 3 times during the dormant season. The most important spray is when you see color on the buds, just before they open. A customer who has had excessive leaf curl recommends adding Neem oil to the Liqui-cop. And another has had success using only Neem oil.

We have some handsome new benches with matching containers. Also in stock are lots of terra cotta pots, sizes small to very large.

The genus Hypericum (commonly called ‘St John’s Wort’) has added some really smashing hybrids called ‘Floralberry’. They were initially bred for the florist industry because of their very attractive berries. And now, luckily, they are available to retail nurseries. The current variety here is ‘Floralberry Sangria’. The leaves are very showy, dark green with red undertones. The shrub produces yellow flowers in spring followed by the very colorful berries. They make a great display in the garden as well as in a vase. This deciduous plant grows to about 3 feet tall and wide.

We expect bareroot strawberries later in the season but we currently have ‘Berri Basket White’ in 4″ plants. The white refers to the flowers, not the berries. This is a compact variety which does particularly well in containers and hanging baskets. Bareroot varieties to arrive later are ‘Albion’ and ‘Seascape’.

We have a lovely selection of poinsettias this year – marble, country quilt and red flowers with variegated leaves. The white variety is ‘White Princettia’ – true white flowers in delicate clusters. Wishing you a happy and safe holiday. Thanks to all of you for being such loyal and supportive customers!!

Sabrina, our saucy new cat, is posing for a Halloween calendar.

Newsletter for November 2020

A new frilly, fragrant viola – ‘Magnifi Scent’. This one is considered to be perennial – we’ll see if it survives our hot summers. There are lots of choices when it comes to violas and pansies. This is their time of year. They’re both great in planters and flower beds. Back again this year is ‘Honey bee’ viola, a real charmer! Other annuals to get you through the winter include stock, calendulas, snapdragons, Iceland poppies and erysimum. Give your flowers a good head start with some healthy organic soil and remember to fertilize throughout the blooming season.

Just arrived – a new shipment of the evergreen grass commonly called ‘Pheasant Grass’ but with two rather non-memorable botanical names – Stipa arunundinacea or Anemanthele lessoniana. But don’t let the names scare you off. This is a great evergreen grass with thin, arching blades that turn from green to shades of copper in the fall and winter. Only moderate irrigation is required. We are also expecting a shipment of Muhlenbergia capillaris, the muhly grass with outstanding pink flowers in fall.

Nandina or “Heavenly Bamboo” is almost always available at the nursery but this is the season we tend to highlight it. The reason is its great fall and winter color. Right now we have four different varieties: ‘Gulf Stream’ is very compact, growing about 3 to 4 feet tall. ‘Plum Passion’ has exceptionally nice fall color and grows 4 to 5 feet tall. ‘Fire Power’, only reaching 2 feet, has the reddest foliage of all. If you’d rather avoid any presence of red in the garden, choose ‘Lemon Lime’. The spring growth is chartreuse turning to green as the season progresses.

Bulbs for forcing. A tip for paperwhites to prevent them from becoming too tall – when the leaves are about 2 inches tall, replace the water with 1 part alcohol and 7 parts water. Rubbing alcohol will do. Save the good stuff. We have received a new shipment of many varieties of daffodil.

Cover up time! This row cover has many uses: protect tender plants including citrus from the frost. Protect young vegetable seedlings from the birds and cover fruit trees to keep the birds away – easier to remove than netting.

It’s still a great time to plant California natives. We have a good selection of manzanitas as well as coffee berries, Ceanothus and many more. Bargain 4″ plants include two varieties of Zauschneria plus Salvia apiana, fasciculatum buckwheat and Eriophyllum lanatum ‘Siskyou’. Manzanita flowers provide an early source of food for hummingbirds.

Cyclamen are one of the stars of the fall/winter season. Colors include red, white, maroon, pink and salmon. They tend to be a bit tender so plant them in a frost protected area. Otherwise cover them when the temperatures dip down. These lovely plants can also be used as house plants – give them good light and a cool spot. You will find English primroses in the same area – great winter color for the shade.

Make a statement! This garden art will delight and amaze. Standing at 4 feet tall it will certainly add character to your landscape. We have other sculptures a bit smaller.

Why not add a bit of color to the vegetable garden? New this year is ‘Purple Lady’ bok choy. The colorful stems belong to ‘Peppermint’ Swiss chard. We have a pretty good supply of winter vegetables – broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kale and bulb fennel. We sold out of onion and garlic sets but do have burgundy onions and green bunching onions in 6 packs. In 4″ plants look for the garlic ‘Inchelium’. This is a softnecked type with mild flavor. It was discovered on a native American reservation in Inchelium, Washington. A taste test winner it stores well for 6 to 9 months.

These fall colored Poinsettias were very popular last year. We expect them to arrive early this month. We’ll have a variety of others – red, white, marbled and poinsettias with variegated leaves. This variety is ‘Golden Glow’. At the end of the month holiday confers will arrive along with topiaries of green.

The website for our bareroot catalog is We will also have bare root shade trees which are not listed in the online website. You can come to the nursery to see the list.

Newsletter for October 2020

Orders for the bareroot season have been rolling in. It seems the early gardening craze continues! The recommendation, therefore, is get your bare root order in as soon as possible. We still have a great selection but the numbers are dwindling. Roses are also selling very well, so again, do not hesitate! Here’s the link to the web site: – keep in mind that the prices refer to mail orders and the in-store prices are always a bit less.

‘Scarlet Spires’ Salvia adds bold color to the border. As is true with many of the larger flowered Salvias, i.e. ‘Amistad’ and ‘Marine Blue’, the plant will completely die back in the winter but return each year with an increase in size. To prolong the bloom, be sure to cut back the spent flower spikes.

Wildflower seeds have arrived. The best time to plant them is in the fall right before a rain (hope springs eternal!) Included are two varieties of mixed seeds – One has California wildflowers and the other actual Native California wildflowers. California poppies are especially inclined to reseed for many years once they are established. In preparation, it’s best to have a fairly open area in which you can rough up the dirt a bit.

We’ve been out of this great book on native California plants for a while but it has returned. Aside from the descriptions of more than 500 native plants there are many specific situations mentioned including plants for under oak trees, those for attracting hummingbirds, those that are deer resistant and lots more. The book was written by three native plant experts from different parts of the state and is indispensable for anyone wanting to grow our natives. Fall is the very best time to plant natives.

It appears we will have some real fall weather soon – the perfect time to plant fall vegetables. Expect six packs of broccoli, cauliflower, beets, lettuce and more. For the daring gardener why not plant some brokali. Brokali is new this year – a cross between broccoli and Chinese kale. Brokali can be enjoyed raw or cooked in any of the same applications as conventional broccoli, broccolini or sprouting broccoli. Chop florets and leaves separately and add to salads or egg dishes. Keep stems whole and leaves attached or halve and sauté, roast or grill for a side dish. Lightly blanch or steam spears and leaves or rough chop and add to stir-fry, pastas, grain or rice dishes. Brokali can be blanched and frozen for up to 3 months. Store Brokali in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Hanging baskets have been hard to come by recently but we have some scheduled for this week. The baskets are full of three different colors of Calibrachoa. These are the most popular varieties for hanging baskets: they hold up to the heat and flower for a long period. Spruce up your garden for the fall. And be sure to add some showy grasses like the ‘Red Baron’ millet – great for containers.

The amazing daffodil bulb! These are the most popular fall bulb we sell. The reasons include: gopher resistant, excellent production for many years and the bright display in late winter during the dreariest, days! Another factor is the great variety of daffodils. The typical plant is the yellow trumpet form. But there are so many others. Tet-a-tete for example, is a charming dwarf variety. Other selections include white flowers with pink cups and double flowering ones. The daffodils have been so popular we have ordered many more to arrive this coming week.