Food Chain Farm

Getting Garden Advice

Recognizing So Cal plants
The first thing I did when moving from Boston was to give away all my gardening books.  After gardening on the east coast for 20+ years, I needed to start over.  I couldn’t recognize anything in the yard except for daylillies.

I had someone from local nursery to help ID plants.  Believe me,  I took copious notes – everything was new to me including the “Live Oak” trees – I couldn’t find any oak trees on the property – turns out Live Oaks looks completely different from East Coast oak trees. 

Also, consult gardening books that most closely address the unique So Cal conditions.  Any gardening book that tries to give advice to a larger area ie: all of western US will be wrong for So Cal.

My So Cal gardening bible is:

Southern California Gardening  - A Month by Month Guide by Pat Welch
The next thing to do is find a local gardeners – I mean really local – in your town if possible.  With all the microclimates, you can shorten your learning curve dramatically if you can hook-up with local gardening group.  For many years, our local newspaper had a garden column written by Jerry Weiss.   He dispensed great advice but he died several years ago.  Here are excerpts from one of his last columns:

"Counting our blessings through the garden

December 24, 2009 - To the Fallbrook green-thumbed optimist, Winter Solstice is considered to be the first day of spring, allowing for me undertaking of fun risks and welcome surprises.  Give the gift of a fresh vegetable garden as the ultimate present that truly represents the essence and love of the holiday season. "

I kept all his columns and still refer to them

  Food Chain Farm Homepage and Table of Contents
See us on the HPWREN Webcam:

Food Chain Farm
(c) 2011 Food Food Chain Farm