Winter in California's summer-dry climate is very different from the rest of the country. It is a robust time in gardens as winter rains kick plants into their growing season. It is a great time to visit San Francisco Botanical...
The Covid-19 pandemic began as spring started, but spring was not cancelled - only humans needed to stop and think about our every move.  Public gardens needed to close as the virus peaked and needed to assess risks to...
No garden has ever thrilled me more than the O'Byrne garden. The careful plant selection of textures and foliage combinations become tapestries, at first glance haphazard but intricately composed.  It is a joyful place full of whimsy and surprise, yet...
My excuse to visit the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles has nothing to do with the inside of the recently renovated museum.  I wanted to see the new Nature Gardens now that they were filling in. My friend Carol Bornstein is...
A mature tree is an awesome thing, clasped to the earth, connected to the sky, drinking in light, breathing out oxygen, sheltering the land, nurturing the soil.  What would the earth be without trees ?   A recent visit to the...
The Rio Grande Botanic Garden in Albuquerque, New Mexico has a most clever Children's Garden.  Short of actually being in a garden, where kids can plant (play in the dirt) and harvest their own snacks, this place is sure...
The Wildlands Conservancy opened the first phase of the Southern California Montane Botanic Garden at Oak Glen Preserve in San Bernardino Mountains in the spring of 2014. I first heard about the preserve at a California native plant conference where...
Matthew Stephens arrived in San Francisco from New York.  With a masters degree in Public Horticulture and years of planting literally a million trees in New York City, you would think he knows a lot about gardening. Now, as the...

Leaning Pine Arboretum

I have been visiting Leaning Pine Arboretum for years, and it has become one of my favorite gardens. For a California garden photographer, seeking landscape settings for mature, appropriate plants adapted to the summer-dry climate, Leaning Pine is near perfect....

Photo Overwhelm

One of the biggest lessons for students who take my garden photography workshops is about “seeing”.  If you don’t stop to think what you are really seeing, what it is that really excites you about a garden, then you will...