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Archive for month: October, 2010

Pumpkins for Halloween and Home & Garden Accents

By Cathy Hough, general manager & buyer

Our Pumpkin Patch is the perfect place for photos. Bring the kids and capture some fun and cute moments as they peruse the patch for their pumpkin pick.

The Pumpkin Patch experience is one you and your kids don’t want to miss!

Fall is the best time for planting and we are loaded with some really great and unusual plants.

Lavender (foreground, above) sways in the breeze as the fog rolls in.

People are drawn to gardens that make effective use of hardscaping, garden accents and fall foliage. We have a variety of fountains, including some new designs, that make excellent focal points or help create a soothing, contemplative feel. The display above and below was designed by Darla, who can help you design your garden.

Stroll our grounds for inspiration. Greens, rust, oranges, yellows, browns and blues. Create a captivating and exquisite garden with our help. Ask Darla or Steve for expert planting guidance.

Limelight salvia (above) is a stunning plant in the landscape.

Regardless of sun or shade, we can help you find the right plants for your garden. Bougainvillea (above), vibrant red and great for sunny areas, nicely accents a fountain.

Pumpkins will make great garden accents all the way through Thanksgiving. Stop inside our store to see our selection of fall accents.

Garden designers know what a great accent piece can do for your landscape. They’ll even tell you that accents are worth splurging on since really good ones are durable and long-lasting. We have just received some great new garden accents (below).

A new fountain (below)

Tea trees are in gorgeous bloom right now (below). Stop in to choose yours.

Grasses and roses (below) create a nice feel. Ask Steve or Darla for any help you need.

Cool-season vegetables are here! Our herb and vegetable selection (below) is huge. Stop in today.

It’s All About Pumpkins

By Cathy Hough, general manager & buyer

Pumpkins, pumpkins, pumpkins! Stop in to hand pick your pumpkins from our large assortment in different shapes and sizes. Most pumpkins are in our Pumpkin Patch but do take a walk around the garden center and inside our store to see all of our special fall items.

Every year, our Pumpkin Patch provides the perfect backdrop for picture taking. Little ones dressed in costume and those having fun finding just the right pumpkin make for the perfect special memory, captured in photo and/or video.

Cool-season vegetables are here! Ask Darla or Steve for for planting guidance. They can help you select the right plants for your growing conditions and the right soil and amendments to ensure a healthy, thriving vegetable garden.

Wander our store and grounds to have some fun!

A Field Day Yields Fresh Ideas for Fall Planting

By Cathy Hough, general manager & buyer

Fall is the best time for planting, which was in full evidence at Friday’s Field Day at San Marcos Growers in northern Santa Barbara. It’s always great to visit a grower to see what new plant varieties they’re growing (below, new varieties of Phormium and Cordyline) and to hand select plants for the Marina del Rey Garden Center.

I’ve been to San Marcos before for a private tour and on Friday joined about 500 garden-minded folk for a day of operational and plant tours, food, fun, camaraderie and presentations by people who are tops in their field. Our growers are the best and are committed to making gardening as pleasurable, beautiful and practical as possible.

What I really like about our industry is its commitment to offering plant and planting guidance and expertise, and developing plants, soil amendments and the like that support a healthy planet.

The San Marcos Field Day captured several experts in their fields, including John Greenlee, who literally wrote and continues to write the book on Ornamental Grasses, and Debra Lee Baldwin, whose guidance and insight into the world of Succulents has opened many a landscape to this world of waterwise plants, among others.

Succulents, Ornamental Grasses, Phormium and Cordyline make up the fun display above.

Raised beds cleverly displayed demonstration gardens of Ornamental Grasses (above and below) at San Marcos. Seeing grasses up close like this gives gardeners a chance to see each one’s growing habit, color, texture and density.

(Below) John Greenlee, gardener, designer and meadow specialist, brought new Ornamental Grasses with him and discussed the benefits of each. He announced a new partnership with Suncrest Nurseries, who will grow Greenlee’s grasses at their Watsonville growing grounds. Suncrest is one of our top-quality growers and I had the pleasure of taking a private tour there a year ago to see their expansive and dynamic operation.

Ruby Grass (below) is a short grass, growing only 8 to 12 inches high, with blue-green foliage that turns purple-red in the fall. Ruby Grass is a real show stopper in the summer when it produces beautiful 3-4 inch iridescent ruby-pink blooms that sit about a foot above the foliage and are breathtaking blowing in the wind. This grass is great for use as borders, in mixed perennial beds, as well as in mixed containers.

(Below) Ruby Grass

(Below) San Marcos also had this stunning collection of drought-tolerant Echinacea on their grounds.

(Below) The weather was perfect and the day gorgeous during Friday’s Field Day at San Marcos Growers, where fields of flowers and distant hills create a stunning panorama. The vivid red flowering plant is a Penstemon and the softer hues of yellow, pink and orange belong to Salvias.

(Below) Award-winning writer, editor, artist and photographer Debra Lee Baldwin treated the audience to a talk about Succulents, wonderful waterwise plants that are great regardless of climate or space constraints.