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Trip to Home Depot

Got some fun stuff at Home Depot yesterday… 5 1-gallon portulacas (a pink-blushed peach color), a couple 1-gallon bloodgrasses, a couple 4″ Salvia greggii, several 4″ million bells, a 4-pack of dragon’s blood sedum and a 4-pack of baby’s tears (for a pot). Oh, and some little lemon thymes. I redid some pots that were bursting with miscanthus sinensis ‘Morning Light”.

My “let’s see how well Lithodora diffusa does in my clayey soil” experiment is complete. Conclusion: Not well. It died. I’m always trying to bring a little bit of Mendocino back to Sacramento. The echiums have done well, as have other plants, but lithodora was not meant to be for me. I do not live in a cool, coastal climate with fast-draining soil. I do not live in a cool, coastal climate with fast-draining soil. I do not live in a cool, coastal climate with fast-draining soil.

Basil’s doing well, peppers and tomatoes were slow to take off this year, despite care and feeding. I didn’t plant ‘Sungold’, but the seedling volunteers are giving me lots of tasty fruit while the tomatoes I planted are still growing and/or ripening. My ‘Sungold’ babies are bigger than their parent and slightly more red and tangy, but I’m not complaining. I like tomatoes of all shapes, colors and sizes.

There’s a frenzy of bees and butterflies in the garden right now.

Black Widows and Blazing Heat

# of black widows discovered out in the open while watering today = 2

Remember, black widows make these crazy looking webs. If you ever see an irregular looking web, keep an eye out for its creator.

Speaking of spiders, I videotaped a spider in my doorway the other night. It was beautifully backlit while wrapping its prey just before sucking the life out of it. I’ll try to post the video clip soon.

I finally planted most of the plants I bought at P.O.W. before my trip to Mendo. Waking up early this morning made all the difference. At 7am, it’s quite nice outside. It was so nice outside that I found myself thinking, “There’s no way it’s gonna be 106… 7… 8… 9 degrees today.” Hah. Still, I’ll take 109 and low humidity over 80 degrees and humid any day…

Recent garden bummer: turns out my irrigation controller was OFF the whole time I was out of town and a few days after I got back. I have no idea how or why it was turned off. I swear I didn’t do it. We probably turned it off when repairing the spray heads my darling puppies gnawed off awhile back. Some parts of the yard look crispy, but I’m doing my best to rehydrate things.

Speaking of my cute canines, they’re being really good lately but have managed to dig two small but very deep holes in the lawn. There’s absolutely no sign of dirt where they’ve dug, but I know they did it. I caught them in the act a few times. God, I hope they didn’t eat the dirt from the holes. Don’t know why they wouldn’t, though, since their palate is quite broad. Ants, cherry pits (toxic to dogs, by the way), cat poop, a several-day-old grilled cheese sandwich someone left in my van, garbage in general… all of it’s haute cuisine for these dogs. Their expensive gourmet kibble from PetSmart, however, is always met with boredom and slight disdain.

On a positive note, one of my Mexican sunflowers (Tithonia) is huge and blooming right now! It’s 6-7 feet tall and pretty wide. Love it. My cosmos it blooming up a storm too. It’s so showy and cheery, I must plant more of it next year. Gloriosa daisies are, well, glorious. Pink sedum is just coming into bloom. Etc., etc.

One more reason to love Mendocino…

My version of camping… nonfat mocha (no whip) and broadband internet. The internet connection at the house is dial-up, and it’s not even like regular dial-up where you wait a few seconds for a page to load. It just tries and tries and tries and either finally loads or simply times out. I started to get the no e-mail shakes and popped into Moody’s Internet Cafe on the last day of my trip.
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More photos from Mendocino

Ingrid’s Mendo Birds. It’s a must for garden lovers!

The front of her shop… in the background is my really hot ride… my Toyota, um, minivan.

mosaic chair

wow, can you imagine trying to fill that vase with water? and how do you put flowers in it? i guess i should say how do you put flower in it? just kidding. always kidding.

front window of Ingrid’s shop

how many clay people does it take to hold up some succulents?


bird in hand

more mendo birds

Ok, so we’re on the road now. On expert advice, we decided to stop at the Navarro winery on the way home. The nice wine man recommended the 2001 Pinot Noir… I know… pinots are so trendy since Sideways… but he and my expert were right. It’s lovely. No, I did not sample that day. I was driving.

The Navarro Winery

They have some covered picnic benches on the side and a small garden out front

and grapes… can’t forget the grapes.
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hand-made hand rail


Datura? Brugmansia? Datura? Brugmansia?


closer view

View from the inside the Bayview cafe. The town is setting up for the annual music festival.

Starting to get crowded… people are arriving for the festival. We’re just leaving.

Lovely little arrangement outside a local shop.


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