Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Succulents & Daffodils

Two friends and I made a trip to Roger's Gardens last Saturday.  Two very different displays caught my attention near the entrance.

The first was the installation of a new succulent display garden.  It's another indication of Roger's commitment to a California-friendly plant palette.  The bed was too large to photograph in one wide shot (at least in the presence of customer traffic) so I took multiple shots walking around the circular space.













What's your reaction to the layout?  Although I generally prefer naturalistic plant arrangements, I liked the circular and paisley patterns in this bed.  I also liked the use of rocks of varying size, combined in places with smaller gravel.  Although the display is made up of good-sized specimens, I admit that it probably isn't sustainable in the long-term as some of those succulents will get larger still in time but my guess is that it's not meant to remain in place more than 6 months at most.

The other display was a daffodil exhibition.  I love daffodils, in part because most come in my favorite color, yellow, but also because they're an emblem of spring.  I don't have much of a collection myself and I'm not well-versed in their culture but it was fun to have a look at the range of variation among them.








Some of my favorites, clockwise from the left (assuming that I got the names right): 'Karigal', 'Pacific Rim', 'Falstaff', 'Early Dawn', 'Innovator', 'Butter n' Eggs', and Pima


Surprising myself as much as my friends, I didn't buy much on this trip.  Anticipating the pending upheaval associated with taking out a tree in the backyard and cutting back 9 other trees in response to a neighbor's complaint about my garden's obstruction of her view (as previously discussed here), I've felt frozen in place with respect to work in my garden.  Hopefully, after the work is complete on March 7th, I'll be able to refocus on my own plans for the garden.


All material © 2012-2015 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party

26 comments:

  1. So you decided to comply with the neighbor's wishes? Have you asked anyone from the city who enforces this ordinance to come and have a look to see if she is within her rights and not overstating the case?

    I like the playfulness of the succulent designs and the use of the rocks included in it. It's fun!

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    1. The city will come out to meet with complainants but I don't think they do that for the targets of the complaint until the complainant formally initiates an application for view conservation (and pays the required $5k fee). My husband and I looked at photos taken after our Eucalyptus was removed and surveyed the view from a public trail that runs near to the neighbor's house. We're doing what we feel is fair but I've refused to tour the property with the neighbor as she requested - I'm not going to get into a negotiation with her tree-by-tree. If she isn't satisfied with what we do, then she can pursue next steps with the city.

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  2. I quite like the succulent bed but because of where it is, I assume that it's a marketing ploy and would maybe be a bit too much in another setting.
    Nice daffs, I prefer the smaller species and dwarf varieties.

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    1. Roger's succulent bed is advertising, yes, but I think their management is also trying to persuade people to take a closer look at what can be done with drought tolerant plants. There are still too many people here wasting water on plants we shouldn't try to grow under severe drought conditions.

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  3. The arrangement of those succulents makes for a nice change from the naturalistic style. Spikies used creatively without a tacky result. As you said it's likely to be only temporary.

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    1. I was surprised to find how much I liked it. Of course, it would cost a fortune to duplicate!

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  4. Love the succulent bed! Perhaps as they grow, the plan is for selective removal of plants?
    Beautiful daffodils! Sorry about your neighbor!

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    1. That bed generally turns over 2-3 times a year to reflect seasonal offerings but they have set up more permanent demonstration beds toward the back of the property.

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  5. Great display, I rather like it. I don't like that your mean neighbor (I picture her looking like Almira Gulch/aka The Wicked Witch - does she?) has managed to subdue your gardening mojo. I hope you're right and as soon as the work is done you're back to normal.

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    1. Physically, I'd say she looks more like a representative of the Lollipop Guild (in drag). Although I refused her request to tour our garden to discuss our plans for each tree earlier, she showed up this evening with photos ostensibly taken by the neighbor above her (who moved here in the last year and doesn't know what the view was before the Eucalyptus came down, much less as of 1989, the reference date of the ordinance). She presented her package as a "thank you" in advance for improving the view for her and other neighbors. Some of the trees she's circled in the photos don't even appear to be ours. Pushy doesn't even come close to describing her...

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  6. I'm surprised myself that I like the swirls and geometrics of that succulent planting - but I do :) I suppose it could be considered a distant cousin of some of the very formal gardening styles of the past - parterres and knot gardens and Le Notre's work at Versailles... a very distant cousin! Thanks for taking the shots and sharing them here. I hope you'll soon be feeling happier about gardening - this fiasco would take the fun out of it for anyone, I think!

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    1. I'm glad you enjoyed the display, Amy. Re the neighbor issue, it's really that I don't want to plant anything and risk it being tromped over by a tree service crew. I'm also uncertain how much more intense the sun may become once the work is done.

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  7. I love the Succulent garden! The layout is really fun and pleasant to the eye. There's something almost other worldly about them for this New Englander.

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    1. Be careful, Flower Freak - succulents can become an addiction!

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  8. I think the planting in that bed will look better when the plants grow a bit, but I get kind of a Victorian 'bedding out' vibe from it.This seems in keeping with that pie shaped thing they have in the center of the nursery..I always thought of it as the plant amphitheater ..assuming that is still there ? When I worked in the garden center in San Diego (late 70's early 80's) we used to do spy missions to Rogers-We were always excited by the gigantic moss hanging baskets they used to plant up(full of annuals mostly) and then grow on at the rear of the nursery.

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    1. They still have the sloped, pie-shaped beds, Kathy, and they still plant them out with seasonal selections. I didn't pay it close attention when I was there but the planting was dominated by Delphinums (not yet blooming). It's kind of a funny choice as the amphitheater as you call it now surrounds the succulent plant tables but I suppose they need to appeal to all tastes.

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  9. I love the design, but I would hate to be the person picking the pine needles out of the agaves. I guess if it's temporary, that might not be a problem.

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    1. I hadn't thought about the pine needles, Max, but you're right, that could be a hassle.

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  10. I thought the same thing about eventual plant size, but I like the arrangement. I wouldn't have it in my own garden, but in a setting like that I'd love to walk around it and take it in. There are so many different little areas and it keeps changing as you move on.

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    1. As a display garden, it was well done. The funny thing, though, is that I was the only one checking it out in detail when I was there - there were more people checking out the daffodils.

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  11. I really like that succulent bed - it must be worth a large fortune. To me it feels like a gigantic dish garden. I'd love to have benches set up on every side to allow for long term viewing sessions. I appreciate how the design makes the most of shape and form and provides visual "motion". And I'm totally going to steal some of those rock juxtaposition ideas. How fun are those!?

    I am always sad to hear when neighbors fall into conflict over views and plantings. I am betting something unexpected and wonderful will come from your revisions and look forward to seeing how you turn these particular lemons into Kris P lemonade!

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    1. I've been thinking of trying some of those designs as well, Deb. Thanks for the kind words about the future of my garden - right now, I'm having a hard time visualizing the back border after that tree is removed.

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  12. I saw this new planting a few wks ago and have to admit not being a fan. Beautifully grown plants, though. As far as the tree issue, try to take comfort in our looong growing season. You'll be able to get the trees sorted and there should still be plenty of time for things to settle in. Hopefully the resulting sun/shade issue won't be too dire. I can imagine the strain of being polite to her when she shows up on your doorstep -- the nerve!

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    1. I hope you're right, Denise. I'm putting trust in the arborist who works with the tree service guys to ensure that no immeasurable harm is done in reducing the crowns of the trees. And, I'll use the tree removal as an opportunity to amend the soil throughout the surrounding area. I can only hope that the neighbor steers clear of me for 2 years as she did last time but her appearance on my doorstep this week with photos of trees circled with a highlighter leads me to wonder if she's stepping up her foliage-hacking mission.

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  13. Two of my favorite things...succulents which I wish I could grow more of...beautiful. And daffs. I adore daffs as they last a long time in our unusual springs.

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    1. I hope your own daffodils are blooming soon, Donna!

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