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Archive for month: July, 2014

Summer Planting: Rudbeckia, Prime-Jim Blackberry, Convolvulus, Tulip Tree

Great for summer planting in flower beds and elsewhere, Rudbeckia (below) add sizzling color to front yards, porches, decks and gardens.


Summer is the perfect time to add a fountain to your home or garden. (Below) This wall fountain uses re-circulating water–as do all our fountains.


Fill a container with Rudbeckia and Convolulus (below) or plant them in something fun such as a wine barrel.


Container Gardening


(Below) We’re happy to offer the Prime-Jim Blackberry, which will produce fruit on its first-year canes. Prime-Jim yields medium-sized, firm berries and offers an extended harvest from mid-June through frost. Its upright, thorny canes work well planted in hedgerows. Prime-Jim Blackberry also performs well in containers.


When planting in containers, ask one of our design experts what soil to use. Your plants will thrive when planted with a great potting soil such as Ocean Forest (below) from Fox Farm.


No matter what you do in your garden this summer, the sound of flowing water can give you and your family and friends hours of enjoyment. We’re known for our huge selection of in-stock fountains, containers and statuary.

Flowing Water: A Soothing Sound




Trees and Shrubs


(Above) A Tulip Tree in bloom is a gorgeous thing. If you’re looking for hedge material, shrubs, Boxwoods or trees, we have a great selection.

Colorful Foliage


(Above) Coleus bring interesting color to shady areas while Bougainvillea (below) loves the sun!


Beautiful Orchids


Stop in to see us anytime! You’re always welcome to stroll our 2+ acres to enjoy nature, get gardening ideas, and ask questions.

Summer in the Garden: Edibles, Salvias, Native Plants, Penstemon, Grasses, Succulents, Roses

Summer in the garden can be many things–a time to enjoy dynamic oranges, pinks, and reds–a time to gather outdoors for summer parties–a time to tiki up–a time to turn to succulents and grasses–a time to plant our edible gardens–a time to go electric in blue!

(Below) Penstemon


As gardeners know, there’s always something to do in a garden, from trimming away spent flowers to re-conditioning soil to adding nutrients to planting something new. Ask our designs experts, Steve, CJ and Roger, for planting tips, including what soil amendments to add, how to give your plants nutrients, and how to give them the best start possible.


(Above) A homeowner has used a mix of colorful California native and Mediterranean plants to line this sun/shade passageway leading to the back garden: Mendocino Reed Grass, Manzanita, Penstemon, Thyme, Catmint and Monkeyflower.

Naturescapes like the ones on this page call for touches of colors and plants that are very beneficial for the planet and environment, including Milkweed (below), the plant Monarch butterflies rely on for food.

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Lantana (below) is also another fun and colorful plant that adds visual appeal to a summer garden.

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Roses are another plant that can add instant color to your garden, and now, while they’re in bloom, is the perfect time to decide which rose bushes you’d like to have.

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(Above) Roses come in tree form and can be trained to grow over entryways, garage doors, gates, fences, walls and the like. Ask Roger, CJ or Steve for assistance. They’ll know what your project needs, and can show you trellises, arbors, soils and more.


(Above) This front yard showcases pink Gaura lindheimeri and red kangaroo paws, great plants for summer, and includes crape myrtles and feathery green Chilean mesquite that help screen the house from street.

(Below) An attractive water-wise parkway garden. (Second photo below) A new garden design turns an office strip mall in Manhattan Beach into a beautiful water-wise garden. Ask CJ, Roger or Steve for help designing yours.



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(Below) Edible gardens can be grown year-round, and add their own distinct charm to the landscape.


Gardens are also great places for whimsy, regardless of the materials used and space available. Let your creativity flow!

(Below) Here are two examples.


(Above) This garden shed roof has become a succulent garden!

(Below) This gardener has taken some unusual items and crafted a small space garden.



Stop in to stroll our 2+ acres to find the best in plants, containers, soil products, natural gardening, statuary, fountains and more.

Have A Pest-Free, Natural Garden By Using Beneficial Insects and Worms–Lady Bugs, Praying Mantids, Earthworms, Trichogramma

It’s summertime and the livin’ is easy, or at least it should be as we step outside to enjoy the warmer weather.


And while it’s still a good time to plant and there are simple and small ways you can keep your green thumb digging in the dirt, it’s also time to keep your plants healthy and safe from pests like the caterpillar below.


So, get on your mark and set free all of the beneficial pests that will rid your garden of the bugs you don’t want: aphids, caterpillars (ab0ve) and other moth eggs, tomato horn worms, and the like.



(Above and below) Lady Bugs will eat your aphids, mites, thrips, scale and many other soft-bodied insects and add color and fun to your garden. Who doesn’t delight at the sight of one of these little guys!


At the Marina del Rey Garden Center, we carry everything you need to control pests safely, effectively and naturally. Our Lady Bugs, Praying Mantids, Beneficial Nematodes, Trichogramma and Earth Worms will get the job done in a way that is safe for the planet and safe for people and pets.


Beneficial Nematodes will get rid of fungus gnats, beetles, weevils and soil-dwelling pests, including grubs.

Trichogramma will kill tomato horn worms, caterpillars and other moth eggs, ridding your plants of the pests that can spoil your harvest.

As all-purpose guardians of the garden, Praying Mantids (on T-shirt below) feed on a variety of insects, including moths, crickets, grasshoppers and flies.


Earth Worms are another source of good in the garden: They will help improve your soil as they burrow into the ground 24/7, bringing oxygen to plant roots and breaking down organic material into nutrients. Their castings are loaded with nutrients that release slowly into your soil and won’t burn roots.


Natural gardening is important: Folks who were able to attend the HoneyLove Pollination Workshop held at the garden center on Saturday learned about the bees’ precious eco-system and why we need bees.

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Ask one of our design experts, Steve, CJ and Roger, about natural organic gardening and how you can help the environment.

Even though it’s summer, you can start an edible garden of any size right now. (Below) Eggplant is a delicious plant you can grow in your garden.

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(Below) Citrus is a great plant to have in the garden. How wonderful to have fresh limes or lemons for a squeeze of fresh juice in a marinade, glass of tea or recipe!

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(Below) And those of us who want a fun way to grow herbs, vegetables or succulents can use a variety of planters we have in stock.

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(Below) It’s never too early to bring youngsters to the garden center to become acquainted with nature. As you can see (below), our roses are in bloom and we have lots of plants on our 2+ acres.

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We also have a huge selection of terracotta, which will look great with citrus, herbs, vegetables, tomatoes, and other great plants. Ask CJ, Steve and Roger for assistance. They can tell you if a plant is suitable for a container and tell you all about potting soils. We have the best!

mdrgcBees7-12-14 028(Below) Stop in and let us help you craft your garden experience. We can custom plant containers for you or you can select from our Succulent Containers (last two photos, below). We’re always crafting new ones, and they go quickly, so hurry in!


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See you soon at the Marina del Rey Garden Center! We hope you’re having a wonderful summer!



Summer Gardening: Herbs, Vegetables, Fruit, Citrus, Perennials and Much More

We’re pleased to welcome HoneyLove urban beekeepers to the garden center for a free public workshop on the benefits of bees Saturday, July 12 from 10-11:30 a.m. The Pollination Workshop will cover how to help our local pollinators right in your own garden by planting pollinator-friendly, pesticide-free forage year round.


Chris Young and John Lyons will be guest speakers.

Chris is a lifetime gardener, and his home yard,  “Tiny Sur,” is a certified Wildlife Habitat (designated by the National Wildlife Federation), using both native and non-native plants. It is also certified by The Xerces Society as a Pollinator Habitat, as well as by Monarch Watch as a Monarch Waystation. Additionally, because Tiny Sur uses no chemical fertilizers or pesticides; provides food, water, cover and places to raise young, it is also certified a Humane Backyard by The Humane Society.

John designs, installs and maintains edible landscapes, orchards and California native gardens as well as teaches at the Los Angeles Arboretum and Descanso Gardens. Most recently, he developed a permaculture oriented garden at his home and worked on his first grey water swale garden in Altadena that was featured in the LA Times.

Summer Gardening


Summertime is ripe for planting some really wonderful fruits and vegetables that do well in the heat. Why not grow your own tomatoes?! We have a large selection of tomato plants, and everything you need to keep them growing strong, including professional guidance, soil amendments, and structures for your plants to grow on (below).

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Summer squash (below) are also a tasty vegetable you can grow at home. Ask one of our design expertsSteve, CJ and Roger–for help pointing you in the right direction. They can tell you about specific plants, what soils and fertilizers to use, how to plant in one of our raised wooden beds, how to stake your tomatoes and vines on our cages and trellises, and much more.


(Below) Even if you don’t have an expansive area for edibles, you can fit them into corners, flower beds, containers. Tomatoes, blueberries, and countless edibles can be grown in small spaces.






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Keep your plants growing well in summer by making sure they have enough water, especially tender, young plants whose root systems aren’t as developed.


Drought-Tolerant Gardens


We have everything you need to have a drought-tolerant garden. Stop in today to consult one of our gardening experts and see our Waterwise Plant Displays.

A Bouquet of Fresh-Cut Flowers


There’s something divine yet simple in being able to have fresh-cut flowers from your garden inside your home.

Stop in today to stroll our 2+ acres of the best in plants, fountains, statuary, benches, organic, and more! We appreciate your business!