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Dry Summer

– Posted in: Garden Photography
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dry summer woodland californiaWe expect summers to be dry here in California.  It’s a summer-dry or Mediterranean climate of wet winters and rainless summers.  Gardeners learn to adapt and use plants that are native to summer-dry climates.

But this year is particularly hard on gardeners because it is particularly dry .  We have not had rainy winters recently, and last winter was one of the driest on record.  In my Water District we now have mandatory water prohibitions with limits on what we can water (no cars, fountains, or driveways), how we water (no overhead sprinklers), and when we water (only between 7pm and 9am). [click to continue…]

San Francisco Flower & Garden Show

– Posted in: Garden Musings, Garden Photography
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As the official photographer for the San Francisco Flower & Garden Show this year, I had access to a lift so that I could shoot down on the gardens.  I was up with these dragons overlooking  the amazing landscapes.

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I was also a judge for the Garden Conservancy so I had early access as the gardens were primped and ready to show. Come fly around . . .   [click to continue…]

A Wild Vacation

– Posted in: Garden Adventures, Garden Photography
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I have been on vacation.  No gardens.  No professional camera.  It was wild – which is where I learn the best lessons for gardening.

If you have never been to Yellowstone National Park, put it on your bucket list.  Sure there are lots of people there during the summer season, but there are grizzly bears too, so it is easy (and only a bit risky) to go on trails where most folks don’t go. [click to continue…]

Gardening en Español, a green roof and other notes from Uruguay

– Posted in: Garden Adventures, Garden Travels, Miscellaneous
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Karena Hogg, a Uruguayan landscape designer waves a copy of the book I wrote with Nigel Dunnett on green roofs.

For the third time in five years I’m lecturing in Spanish-speaking America (you can read my accounts of lecturing in Mexico here, and here – that was an experience!) . Being interpreted (see my recent post about Argentina). We always have the same discussion – why aren’t there more books and material on gardening in Spanish? So many books are either translations from English or books published in Spain, and not particularly relevant to the Americas. Interest in gardening and landscape is growing in South America, and the Estados Unidos itself  is gradually turning bilingual. Any visitor to the US, especially the south-west, is aware of how much garden work is done by workers from Mexico and further south; some of whom are now settling and setting up their own garden maintenance businesses. Gardening is turning Spanish, but where are the books and other media? [click to continue…]

What You Don’t Know About Saxon Holt: Reflections on His Childhood

– Posted in: Garden Design
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Saxon has been contributing to Gardening Gone Wild for over 4 years…practically since its inception. As all of you know, he is a gifted garden photographer, a gardener, a fine writer, and a man with a gentle soul. You can see more of  Saxon’s work on his website: Saxon Holt and his personal blog, Mental Seeds.Fran Sorin

When pressed I confess to being more gardener than photographer. While I do love taking pictures and trying to figure ways to tell the stories I see, gardening is what drives me to pick up the camera. I rarely pick up a camera unless I am in a garden or exploring plants and ecosystems.

I come from a long line of gardeners. My great grandfather, John Sherwood, had a beautiful home in Baltimore Maryland with a huge garden that he left to the City of Baltimore. Sherwood Gardens is still open and famous for its tulip display. The enduring, classic azalea, ‘Sherwood Red” is named for him.

Growing up in Tidewater, Virginia, I became a gardener by osmosis. As the oldest of five kids I think my parents were eager to have me take up the garden chores, cutting the grass, pulling weeds, turning the compost. I don’t remember enjoying any of this. I do remember being paid a penny for every dandelion and thinking this was not much of an incentive.

Lawnboy - Saxon Holt as young child
Lawn Boy

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