The Learning Curve: October in the Garden & North State Calendar of Gardening Events

My 14 year-old who is learning French for the first time and this last week she learned the colors and subsequently I re-learned French colors. Not dissimilarly, in the course of co-developing an exhibit on mushrooms and fungi of Northern… Continue Reading


September’s Seeds for a New Season & North State Calendar of Gardening Events

Photo: Oak leaves turning colors with the season. The beginning signs of a change in seasons – such as the falling acorns of last week, always seem to precipitate a bout of nostalgia in me – a longing look back… Continue Reading


A Mast Year? The Form and Function of the Iconic Acorn

Photo: Acorn from a blue oak, or blue oak hybrid (Quercus douglasii). Note the stout, rounded body of the acorn and the well-fitted cap. Who doesn’t love an acorn? Who can resist bending over to pick up a fresh acorn… Continue Reading


Fireworks: July in the North State Garden & Calendar of Gardening Events

Walking around the garden in the cool of morning last week, it occurred to me how much flowers remind me of fireworks – their colorful explosions, forces of nature demanding that we look at them: Here! Here! Here! Photo above:… Continue Reading


The Origanums – Beautiful Cornerstones of the North State Herb Garden

I’m a big believer in Beauty for its very own sake, but in a gardening life where choices must be made as to what we will give room, resources, time and attention – it’s always nice to love a plant… Continue Reading


Now that Winter’s gone: a Tribute to the Trees! Dunsmuir Botanical Garden

Every morning this time of year, from the early morning lifting through the trees and on the horizon just before 5 am to that hard to-pinpoint moment when morning has become full-fledged day, the birds regale us with their summer… Continue Reading