Newsletter for September 2022

Lantanas are great hot weather plants. We’ve previously concentrated on the cold hardy types, but some of the less hardy are great color additions. And there are lots of vibrant colors. The upright, mounding ones include gold, orange, red, yellow/white bi-color. Low growing varieties are found in shades of lavender, white and yellow.

This charming native Aster is in bloom right now. Aster chilensis ‘Purple Haze’ is a lovely addition to the California native garden but at home in any perennial border. The plant will grow 1 to 3 feet tall and it spreads vigorously by underground rhizomes. Prune to the ground in winter. Considered drought tolerant but irrigation will improve its appearance. It tolerates many types of soil, takes sun or partial shade and is a favorite of bees and butterflies.

The first ‘Knock Out’ rose miniature – ‘Petite Knock Out’. The ‘Knock Out’ roses are known for their durability, disease resistance and spring to fall bloom. This new variety with it’s fire engine red blooms is no different than the original ‘Knock Out’ rose. They’re currently available as patio trees.

Pennisetum orientale ‘Tall Tails’ is an impressive grass we haven’t seen lately. This should make a bold statement in your garden! Pennisetum orientale itself is quite a bit shorter, about 3 feet. It blooms for a long period, starting out with light pink flowers which turn into a light tan color.

We just received a shipment of handsome benches and containers as well as bird baths. Come see for yourself and check out our other yard art!

A good, tough ground cover is always in demand. Phyla nodiflora, commonly called Lippia grass only grows 2″ high and is one of the few ground covers that can endure foot traffic. Plant 1 to 2 feet apart. Plants do not look great in winter but a feeding in early spring will quickly revitalize them. The pink flowers attract bees – if it’s a problem the flowers can be mowed. Not particular about soils but they are not well suited to soils containing nematodes.

A bright orange Canna sits inside one of our new containers. Cannas offer great color late in the summer season. Heights and colors vary. As you can see, they make great container plants but do just as well planted in the garden. They are effective as a border or close to pools. Once a stem is through blooming, cut to the ground and new ones will emerge. The plants die back completely in the winter, but are very cold hardy and faithfully return every year.

Here’s the cover for our 2023 Bareroot Catalog, ready to come out shortly. The website, however, is available right now. As shown on the cover, we’re highlighting the interspecific fruit trees developed by the Zaiger brothers. It’s not too early to put in your order – we’ve already taken many. Trees including persimmons and pluots are always in demand so don’t wait! You can call us or go to the website: 

Newsletter for August 2022

We’re trying to cover the North County with Crape myrtles! They’re in their prime right now – one of the best summer flowering trees that flourish in our heat. Crape myrtles are found in various sizes and colors. This particular specimen has gorgeous color and marvelous shape. You can, of course, start with a much smaller plant and shape it as it grows.

It’s taken time and patience but the citrus grove has arrived! We have lemons, oranges, limes and mandarins plants. These all need protection from the North County frosts. They can be grown in containers or in the ground. Other frost tender edibles include the strawberry guava and a variety of avocadoes. We have Haas, Reed, Lamb Haas and Stewart. Citrus benefit from a lightly acidic soil and we now have a special formula soil mix for their special needs.

Just when you bought two books devoted entirely to salvias, up pops a new one! This variety is ‘Hummingbird Falls’. The flowers are a brilliant dark blue like one of its parents, Salvia guaranitica, but its unique feature is the plant’s form. This salvia is perfect for containers and hanging baskets. It does best with afternoon shade.

The name of this Heuchera says it all – ‘Grande’. This is the most robust species of Heuchera we have seen so far. The dark leaves are huge and look to be very sturdy. Plant ‘Grande’ in the ground or in a container with plenty of shade. For contrast pair it with lime colored Heucheras or other light green shade plants.

We have a new compact, reblooming hydrangea ‘Pistacio’. The colors on this plant are quite unique – lime green with accents of rosy pink. The plant grows 2 to 3 feet tall and 3 to 5 feet wide. Hydrangeas do require more water than many other shrubs, so keep that in mind. This variety would make an excellent container plant.

We are expecting the arrival of 1 gallon Echibeckias – ‘Summerina Yellow’ and ‘Summerina Sizzling Sunset’. These colorful perennials are a cross of Rudbeckia and Echinacea. The bright multi-colored petals are inherited from the Rudbeckia and the cold hardiness and slight downward form of the petals from Echinacea. Also on hand are the multi-stemmed sunflowers providing a great summer accent.

We have a new supplier of house plants – some quite exotic. Shown here is an unusual variety of Sansevieria and a colorful bromeliad. House plants have been very popular as of late. The old fashioned “Creeping Charlie” (Plectranthus) has seen quite a revival! Schultz fertilizer is a good product for house plants. You can also use the slow release product, Osmocote. It only needs to be applied once or twice during the year.

Newsletter for July 2022

Add summer flowering trees to your landscape. Perhaps the best known is the Crape Myrtle. Some lovely older specimens are scattered throughout town. The color selection includes white, pink, watermelon red, lavender and bright crimson. Provide average water and occasional fertilization plus a good soil foundation. The varieties vary greatly in height from 3 feet to 25 and the plants can be grown as single or multi-trunked. We also have some nice patio specimens.

Vitex is another showy tree/shrub. The blue flowers are in bloom at this time. The plant is quite drought tolerant. It will grow over 20 feet tall but can be pruned to remain more compact.

The Chitalpa tree consists of two varieties, ‘Pink Dawn’ and ‘Morning Cloud’. Both have a long bloom period. The pink or white flowers are often compared to orchid flowers.

Native plants are always in demand. A few varieties we are not always able to obtain include Asclepias speciosa. This variety of milkweed is a Monarch butterfly favorite and has a showy flower as well. The plants can exist with almost no water but their appearance will improve with regular irrigation. Another native milkweed available is Asclepias fascicularis. Other native perennials currently in stock include Zauschneria (“California fuchsia”), lupine, Salvia apiana and a seldom seen one gallon Fremontodendron.

Hot, dry weather – succulents to the rescue! They are fascinating plants with exceptional variability. We tend to classify them in tender or cold hardy designations. These designations are quite tenuous depending on your location and yearly temperatures. To highlight just a few, there are the agaves and yuccas. They are generally considered to be landscape plants but also do well in containers.

The vast types of both contain cold hardy and tender types. Check out their descriptions before purchase. Smaller succulents are great for containers or small ground covers. An unusual one is Rochea falcata. The unusual stacked gray leaves will eventually culminate in bright orange red flowers. With a little protection from the cold, they should survive our North County winters.

New hanging baskets arriving this week of mixed Calibrachoa and Vinca. Both types do extremely well in the hot summer.

It’s pesto time! Hope your basil is doing well. Cut off the branches and separate all the leaves. There are many different recipes but mine calls for three cups of packed basil. It takes only minutes – add olive oil, garlic and pine nuts and you will end up with a delicious cup of pesto. It’s quite intense so you won’t need much for adding to your pasta, salad dressing, etc. Pesto freezes well.

The not-so-very-tropical Hibiscus – this stunning specimen is among the Hibiscus family commonly named ‘Rose of Sharon’. How can you resist a plant named ‘Chateau de Versailles’ not to mentions the stunning violet blue flowers with dark centers? These deciduous shrubs grow 4 to 6 feet tall. A very different species of Hibiscus is the moscheutos series. These plants die completely to the ground in winter and quickly reach 24 to 30″ in summer. Currently in stock are ‘Honeymoon Deep Red’ and ‘Honeymoon Light Pink’. The flowers can reach 6 to 8″ wide.

FINALLY a substantial amount of Citrus arrives at Bay Laurel! At the moment you will find Bearss and Mexican lime as well as Makrut lime also known as Kaffir lime, Washington and Late Lane navel oranges. Haas, Lamb Haas and Fuerte avacadoes join them. Be sure you have the right situation for all these plants. They are not cold hardy up here in North San Luis Obispo county so make sure you can protect them from frost. Five gallon grapes are here – Thompson, Concord, Black Monukka.

Newsletter for June 2022

Although the Shasta daisy is a staple in the perennial garden ‘Betsy’ is a standout. The flowers on ‘Betsy’ are the largest by far. Flowers can reach 5 to 7″ across and the plant grows 30″ tall. In contrast, we have ‘Carpet Angel Daisy’, the first Shasta ground cover, growing 6 to 8″ tall and 20″ wide. Be sure to take advantage of the 4′ Dicliptera plants (Uruguayan Firecracker). This unusual perennial with its bright orange-red flowers blooms summer into fall.

Summer annuals bring life into the garden. Great examples include zinnias (‘State Fair’ is an all time favorite) vinca in shades of white, light pink, red and more, defying the heat very well, and of course, marigolds. Many interesting new varieties of petunias also add to the color pallet. Pentas are great in containers – they bloom all summer. Don’t forget the “summer snapdragons” – Angelonia.

Two brand new raspberries! Vintage was developed by the breeding program in Corvallis, Oregon. This high-yielding variety has extra large, conical, bright red berries. The berries contain a high sugar content making them super sweet. ‘Vintage’ has better fruit quality than some of the older varieties such as Heritage and Autumn Bliss. The other new variety is Encore. This is a vigorous, sturdy plant, growing about 5′ tall and 2′ wide. The plant is nearly spineless with high yields of large berries in late July to August. Both are available in 1 gallon containers.

Another delicious arrival – Eversweet pomegranate. These pomegranates are, as their name would suggest, much sweeter than the standard Wonderful. The bright orange-red flowers appear and are followed by pink colored fruits. The plants grow naturally as multi-stemmed shrubs but can be trained into standard trees. They are quite vigorous and need to be pruned to maintain the desired shape and size.

California native plants are always in stock. We have some nice ‘Howard McMinn’ manzanitas right now. This variety grows to about 5 feet with some of the brightest green leaves of its species. ‘Howard’ plants are also one of the most adaptable to different conditions. A great ground cover also in stock is the Salvia ‘Bee’s Bliss’. This tough sage needs only minimum water and has lavender flowers in spring. Growing only about 2 feet tall it can cover at least 4 feet of ground.

Last chance for vegetables! Ready for your garden – lemon and Persian cucumbers, Sun Gold tomatoes, peppers, winter squash and lettuce for starters. More basil is on the way as well. We should have herbs for most of the summer. French tarragon expected next week. A reminder that those hungry earwigs are on the prowl. Sluggo Plus seems to be the easiest and most effective way to eliminate the creatures.

There are 150 varieties of Miscanthus sinensis! Latest to arrive at Bay Laurel is ‘Red Cloud’. This grass is smaller than most Miscanthus, only reaching 40″. Its outstanding feature is the showy red plumes in summer. ‘Red Cloud’ is adaptable to most soils and requires moderate irrigation. This Miscanthus is deciduous and should be cut back in late autumn or early winter.

Signs just for fun at Bay Laurel Garden Center in Atascadero!

Newsletter for May 2020

May is exploding in the colors of spring! There are myriad choices to make amongst annual and perennial flowers. Starting with perennials, Salvia is a great one for our area – choose Salvia greggii (many colors), Salvia ‘Black and Bloom’, Salvia ‘Amistad’, and more. Yarrows? There’s ‘Moonshine’, ‘Paprika’, the natives millefolium and Island pink. We have to include the three hardy Lantanas – ‘Miss Huff’, ‘Chapel Hill’ and ‘Mary Ann’. These durable perennials take a while to return from winter dormancy but will then bloom summer into fall. Soon to be available in 4″ containers.

The lowly Euphorbia has lately gained in stature Once considered a pesky weed, it has lots of use in the modern landscape. Euphorbias are not known for their showy flowers, although in early spring they make quite a statement. Rather it’s their foliage that makes them so useful. Shades of green to nearly black with others sporting various forms of variegation. Add to this deer resistance plus it is one of the few plants gophers tend to avoid.

And then there’s the lowly petunia – soaring to great heights with numerous and incredible varieties! Six packs of petunias are still to be found, but if you want the newest and latest, go for the 4″ containers. Favorites include ‘Night Sky’, ‘Black Mambo’ and ‘Cinnamon.’ Calibrachoas were developed from the petunias – they are much smaller and are great for hanging baskets. Colors abound, including star shapes and double varieties.

Here’s an example of fruit thinning – leaving the fruit approximately a handful apart. It takes time but the result is well worth it! No more scrawny little peaches or apples. Grit your teeth and prepare for a mountain of tiny fruits under foot.

Vegetable growers are showing up in unprecedented numbers! This is the last really good month to get the crops in. The supply is still good. Everyone plants ‘Early Girl’ and ‘Sungold’ tomato, but be a little courageous and try something unusual like the ‘Pineapple’ tomato or ‘Brad’s Atomic Grape’. Popular again are the small “Lunch box” peppers: the small ‘Shishito’ peppers are also in demand. The ‘Ghost’ pepper has a limited fan base. Lemon cucumbers continue to trend as they seem to avoid bitterness in the warm summer months. We have been able to secure plants of the highly touted Italian squash ‘Rampicante’. Be sure to keep up with your fertilization – recommendations vary from every week to every month.

The desire for herbs persists! Mint may not be on the top of your list. A Mint Julep or Mint Mojito of course but why not try some mint pesto? How about snap peas with Meyer lemon and mint? Strawberry mint ice cream anyone? Basil IS definitely on the top of everyone’s list. ‘Mrs. Burns Lemon Basil’ has a wonderful aroma – should be lots of uses for it!

The ubiquitous rock rose, Cistus. This is its time to shine and it can be a great addition to the landscape. Toughness and durability alongside its many forms make it an essential North County shrub. Plant ‘Blanche’ – this tallest of rock roses will grow over 5 feet and produce large white flowers in spring. The variegated form, ‘+Mickie’ adds a nice dimension to to the garden even when its out of bloom.

Mother’s Day is May 8th!

Newsletter for April 2022

It sure is spring! Our vegetable gardeners are out en masse. And we have lots of plants to fill the containers and beds. You can purchase tomatoes in 6 packs, 4″ pots and even 1 gallons. Everyone has their favorite – Ace, Celebrity, Early Girl, Juliet and of course, Sun Gold. Heirloom varieties are here as well – Kellogg’s Breakfast, Costoluto Genovese, and Black Krim to name just a few. Many of you choose to plant tomatoes in containers. Be sure your container is large enough – fill it with some really good soil – and fertilize throughout the season.

Right now we have a good supply of lemon cucumbers, popular because they seem to produce even in hot conditions. Pickling cucumbers also have a following. English and Japanese have similar qualities – both are long and narrow with thin skins and tiny seeds. They are considered to be the sweetest. We have hot and sweet peppers – sweet peppers in colors of green, red, yellow and orange plus the “Lunch box” varieties. Plenty of heat in Ghost and Habanero and Jalapeno. We recommend that you pinch back your peppers for more branching and a bigger crop.

Easing into summer with some bright annuals – marigolds, petunias, lobelia. Here are a few annuals for the cut flower enthusiast – Queen Anne’s Lace, annual statice and Bells of Ireland. A substantial addition to your arrangement might include a bouquet of roses. We just received a new shipment of roses which add to the varieties we potted up from the bareroot season. Shasta daisies and dianthus varieties are also prospects for your bouquet. Clip some greenery of Laurus nobilis, leather fern or Myrtis communis.

Perennials are arriving weekly. Don’t be dismayed if your perennials don’t look like the ones arriving here – we tend to be a bit behind many of the growers. Our popular Salvias are just beginning to take off. Lantana ‘Chapel Hill’ appears to be quite dormant at this point – don’t give up on it!! We recently obtained Verbascum ‘Southern Charm’. According to “Annie’s Annuals”, regular dead heading will keep the plant in bloom for a very long time – it’s worth a try! Also considered deer resistant. A new Greggii Salvia, ‘Pink Bi-color’ looks very attractive.

The native Salvia apiana is in stock. It’s one of the most drought tolerant of the native Salvias. In time it will grow to about 3 feet – the flower wands much taller. The pungent leaves are its most attractive feature. It’s a nice accent in a natural garden and also deer proof! Also in the native department, some great 15 gallon ‘Dr.Hurd’ manzanitas. This is one of the tallest of the genus with dark, mahogany bark.

Just arrived lots of iron planters, benches, trellises and more. And, finally, bird baths, stepping stones and other concrete items.

Some very tall house plants for some very tall ceilings.

This year we have a record number of Peonies. These herbaceous perennials have truly spectacular blooms! They require a rich soil and prefer afternoon shade in our area. We are fortunate to have enough winter chill for their survival. Fertilize after bloom and again in the fall.

We really try to keep lavender plants in stock – but they keep disappearing in large numbers! Next week we expect 4″ plants of Grosso, Hidcote and Provence. We do have the Spanish type in stock; the blooms are stockier and they bloom earlier in the season. The English type lavenders bloom later in the summer with longer, fragrant blossoms.

Newsletter for March 2022

You can grow your own delicious, juicy, sweet strawberries. These plants are just starting to arrive in the nursery. At present, we have Sequoia – large, spring bearing berries and Seascape, a large everbearing variety. Other varieties will soon be arriving. Additionally, we have the small Alpine variety, Regina. This is a red alpine type advertised to be the sweetest of its type.

Onion sets are gone – 6 packs are here. We have packages of two varieties of shallots plus California and elephant garlic. The more exotic garlic, Spanish roja is available in 4″ pots. Arriving later this month – seed potatoes. We sold out earlier types but expect more including German Butterball.

It won’t be long before those small fruits will shrug off their blossoms and become edible fruits. But these fruits can use a little help. Peaches and nectarines in particular are subjected to the tarnished plant bug (Lygus lineolaris). The effect is called cat facing, the skin having an unhealthy, scratched look. It’s important to treat this insect very early, when the blossoms have just dropped. Captain Jack and Take Down insecticides are both effective. The only caveat is the possibility in harming the bee population. Please read the instructions; it will advise spraying when there are no bees in the vicinity. Insecticidal soap and horticultural oil are also recommended. And don’t forget to thin the fruit to get a full size crop.

An early arrival is the very popular Salvia ‘Hot Lips’. It’s available in three sizes – 4″ pots, 1 gallon and 5 gallon. Many other varieties are due in the coming days. The popularity of this genus lies with its ability to stand up to hot weather, produce a long bloom period, and avoid the jaws of the deer.

Another very popular plant last year was the fuzzy, white ‘Angel Wings’. This member of the genus Senecio is also available now. The plant seemed to endure our cold temperatures this winter.

It’s about time to begin fertilizing your plants. Choices abound. There are organic and organic based formulas for specific types of plants including fruit trees, vegetables, flowers, etc. You can also choose an all purpose type. Other available soil nutrients include iron, kelp meal, sulfur, fish emulsion and lots more.

Osteospermum is the name of several flowers considered to be African daisies. New varieties are added each season with single and double flowers, in shades of white, pink, orange and blue. ‘Voltage Yellow’ is one of the oldest but perhaps one of the most durable. Keep dead heading and it will bloom and bloom.

A great selection of pottery has arrived.

A charming flowering house plant – Kalanchoe blossfeldiana with double flowers. These plants will bloom for a long time indoors. When the weather warms up, place outdoors in a semi-shady spot. Cut back all the older flowers, apply a mild fertilizer and wait for another bloom.

And so we bid farewell to another bare root season. There’s a smattering of fruit and shade trees for sale, the roses are safely housed in containers – mostly in bio-degradable pots so as not to disturb the roots when planting. We have a select group of blueberries and blackberries. Available are artichokes and lots of cool weather vegetables and herbs.

Newsletter for February 2022

Asparagus lovers wait no longer! We have very large bareroot plants to satisfy your passion. And we have lots of other vegetables to plant in the winter garden. Check out Sugar Snap and Chinese peas, many types of lettuce, Swiss chard, Kale, Broccoli and a most unusual red turnip. Bronze fennel is ornamental as well as edible. Do not forget the herbs for your gourmet cooking! Parsley, Chives, Thyme, and Oregano among others.

It’s time to bid farewell to the bareroot roses. This is the week they are transplanted to bio-degradable containers. But if you hurry, you might be able to save a few from the hands of the transplantors! Many lovely varieties remain.

In spite of the very cold morning temperatures, we’re trying to restock the shelves. The perennial, Silene, seems to perform admirably under these conditions. We’ve previously brought in Silene, ‘Druett’s Yarigated’, and now we are adding Silene ‘Clifford Moor’. Both of these varieties are great small ground covers, performing well in the front of a perennial border as well. ‘Druett’s’ has unusual small white puff ball flowers and white variegation. ‘Clifford Moor’ exhibits pink flowers and the variegation is yellow on green.

How about a bit of color for your indoor living? These two examples do not rival the flashy Reiger Begonia, but they endure! The Anthurium has very attractive leaves and if you are somewhat conscientious in applying a high bloom fertilizer, you should be able to encourage more blooms in the future.

The Croton, however, depends solely on the color of its leaves. Place it in a light location, water when dry and fertilize a couple times a year.

Bulbs for summer bloom will arrive early this month. Lots of choices – dahlias, gladiolas, lilies and more. In addition to these lovelies, we’ll have potato starts as well as garlic. We also have actual garlic plants of more unusual types – Spanish Roja and Early Italian Purple.

Winter persists but we need some cheer in the garden. What better than these cold hardy annuals? ‘Touch of Red’ Calendula adds a strong spot of color. The more diminutive violas have old fashioned charm. The varieties ‘Coppertone’, ‘Tiger Eyes’ and ‘Honeybee’ and the Jump-up series are prime examples.

A favorite from last season returns – Senecio ‘Angel Wings’. It’s a very eye-catching plant in the garden and seems to handle the cold well. The genus Senecio is quite diverse – it includes many succulents and also indoor plants including ‘String of Pearls’ as well as Dusty Miller and Cinerarea.

A couple of plants that enjoy this winter weather are the large family of Hellebores (shown here) and the Grevilleas. We’re just beginning to stock these durable plants. Helleborus has colors of white, pink and dark rose – single and double petals. This handsome perennial prefers afternoon shade in our area. Grevilleas (sturdy shrubs from Australia) can take heat and a fair amount of drought. Varieties include low growing ground covers and shrubs growing to 8 to 10 feet.

Newsletter for January 2022

Start off the new year with a fruit tree planting at our bare root website ! Begin small with just one tree or plant an entire home orchard. We have a lot of choices. Some of the tried and true standards include the all time favorite apple, Fuji. Another popular variety is Pink Lady. Elberta peaches are always delicious. Santa Rosa and Burgundy plums are notable for their flavor as well as their pollinating capabilities. You can also visit us at at the nursery to check on what’s currently available. As was true of last year, we have sold out of many varieties but many desirable selections remain.

Time to prune! Winter is the prime season for this important task. We have an inexpensive book here at the nursery to guide you through the pruning of fruit trees and roses. Reasons to undertake this annual task include stimulating new fruiting wood, removing broken and diseased wood, allowing for good air circulation and sunlight to penetrate the canopy.

One more chore to ensure the health of your peach and nectarine trees. Avoid or mitigate the fungal disease ‘Peach Leaf Curl’. We recommend spraying the product ‘Liqui-Cop’. Do this 2 or 3 times during the dormant season. The most important application is right before the buds open. Some customers recommend adding neem oil to the spray.

Last chance for spring blooming bulbs – they are now on sale 40% off. We still have a good supply of Tete-a-tete daffodils, charming dwarf plants. They are particularly suited to container planting. We still have some tulips, hyacinth and ranunculus bulbs, among others. Don’t wait until you see them blooming in your neighbors yard! Gophers do not care for daffodils.

A whimsical windswept sun for your wall!

This is one of the latest varieties in the Philodendron family – named Neon for the bright, chartreuse leaves. Philodendrons have been some of the most popular house plants over the years. Most require minimum care – moderate water and light. The genus is quite diverse including many cascading types and other upright varieties with extremely large leaves, such as the Monstera delisiosa.

The African violet shown here is probably one of the most unusual – note the ruffled petals. These small, flowering house plants usually thrive in good light, an eastern window preferred.

Here’s an unusual bench for the weary gardener to rest upon. It is surrounded by all sorts of evergreen shapes and sizes – conifers, boxwoods and cedars. We have the very best selection of these varieties at this time of the year. You can still find many trees, shrubs and native plants to add to the garden right now.

Newsletter for December 2021

Greenery! And what diversity you will find. We have handsome Nordmann firs and Colorado spruce for living Christmas trees and more. For the formal garden you will find rounded and sculpted evergreens.

Inside our main building the holiday offerings include several varieties of colorful Poinsettias plus 4″ and 6″ Christmas cactus. We have a rather decent assortment of house plants including the variegated form of ‘String of Hearts’ (Ceropegia woodii), a rather rare house plant. Additionally, red Amaryllis bulbs are still available plus several Amaryllis bulbs in containers.

A few of the many products you might choose as gifts, not to mention gloves, pruners and gift certificates.

Let’s call it “The pre-bareroot season without the bareroot”. We have rows and rows of berries, figs, grapes and pomegranates in quart containers ready for planting. Be sure to check the availability by coming to the nursery or going to our online order website We will have many of these varieties available in bareroot in January. The advantage of planting from these containers is a larger, more developed root system. Don’t forget the organic amendment and gopher protection to give your plants a proper start.

The star of the winter blooming shrubs – the camellia ‘Yuletide’. The Sasanqua camellias are always the first to bloom. This is just one among many gorgeous varieties. Included in our collection: ‘Pink-a-Boo’, a charming pink bloomer, ‘Setsugekka’, a single Sasanqua with bi-colored flowers, ‘Tom Knudsen’ a Japonica variety with large, bright red flowers. Camellias are quite adaptable but adequate drainage is preferred. We recommend acidic soil, but it is not crucial. Camellias need regular water but not they are not considered “thirsty plants”.

Chondropetalum belongs to a genus of plants named Restio. These originated in Australia and South Africa. The two varieties of Chondropetalums, tectorum and elephantinum, both do very well here. They are great for the landscape and do equally well as container plants. They are evergreen. We also have an assortment of evergreen grasses – Seslaria, Muhlenbergia, Juncus and blue fescue. A reminder to cut back your deciduous grasses at this time. Don’t wait too long or you will see new growth with squared off tips.

Two very different winter flowering shrubs – but both prefer part shade. The Mahonia x media ‘Charity’ has bold, dark green, sharp edged leaves. It is a striking specimen growing 10 to 15 feet tall. The bright yellow flowers in winter transform into black berries in spring.

The Correa reflexa ‘Kangaroo Island’ (origin obvious) is a much more delicate plant. Small, colorful flowers adorn this Correa which attains a height of about 4 feet and 4 feet wide. Another attribute they both have in common is their low water requirement.

It’s great weather for planting. Our shelves are filled with all sorts of temptations. We still have many vegetables including onion sets. The flowering annual selections include Iceland poppies, Calendulas, pansies, violas, English primroses and Cyclamen. The bright orange Diascia will continue on in the winter. No shortage of California natives. The early flowering manzanitas are a favorite of hummingbirds.