20. Spring time summary

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February 7, 2019 by missionazul

Well, past few days, its been rainbows and hail.  Then the cold wind…

In the horticultural landscape, aside from taking the roses down, weeding the vegetable and flower beds, and keeping the yard and garage clean and tidy, here are a few of the highlights from last semester:

We continued work on the Rosenberg Library garden.  Against the building are Salvias – S. holwayi, S. purpurea, and Abutilons.  In the foreground are nutka reed grass, Heuchera,  and Acorus calamus.  Juncus acutus towards the back.  Plus a neat bee plant from the Mediterranean called Scrophularia lyrata.  All under the existing canopies of Melaleuca quinquenervia and Pittosporum crassifolium.  The daffodils they are popping about right now!



This the fun loving garden crew that was out there digging and cutting and planting:


A nice design project was brought to our attention by Steven Pitsenbarger, the gardener at the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park. The task for the class was to draw a new map for visitors touring this historical and enchanting place.  Heres a few of the epic entries.  This is designer Zhanna Goldfine. Remember this name folks!  Hand drawn pics!!!

goldfine jpg.jpg


This map is from Mr. Brendon Lo.  Very elegant!  Gotta see it in brochure and 18 x 24 format!

lo jpg.jpg

One more from – Olivia Haag.  Simplicity and clarity.  Leave something to the imagination, and some room for personal exploration and adventures.  This one reminds me of old time calligraphy that dropped out of a dream. All that is missing is the swishing of bamboo, the clap of the Buddha’s palms, and a river running past the gravel bank.

haag jpg.jpg

Big thank you to Mr. Pitsenbarger,  John Johnson, Roshie Ravan, supervisor  James McCormick and the rest of the crew for maintaining this beautiful garden.  This map is still a work in progress.  Let’s see how it turns out!


We have continued to work in the gardens that we planted.  In some cases, due to nighttime flashlight horticulture and classes of thirty plus students, we plant, then draw the  garden afterwards as an ‘as built’ plan.  In other gardens, its the plan first, then the actual install.  This little triangular sliver of a garden is by Batmale Hall:


The plan for this garden was done rapid fire by the now Golden Gate Park section supervisor TOBY!:

Batmale 1 jpeg.jpg

Then theres this garden that we designed for the Biology Department’s habitat restoration team of Pogge and Cannon.  All California natives (except the weeds, of course):

CN2.jpgThere were a handful of outstanding plans that got this garden off the ground.  Here is one of them.  You may have read Johanna’s work back in the day when she worked at Sunset Western Garden headquarters in Menlo Park, or more recently in the chronicle about growing cannabis.  She has always been about growing the COMMUNITY:

CN garden 4 jpeg.jpgAnother plan, this one is by Gayle Feichter.

CN garden1 jpeg.jpg

Here is one more restoration plan from Mr Sam Sapoznick who went from IT and computer specialist to become a gardener in the dirt.  Last I saw him he was going for a run down Church Street smiling bare foot shoe less  in the native style.  Go California natives!

CN garden2 jpeg.jpg

In our vegetable garden of raised beds we raise some annuals during the growing season, and also like to have a steady back beat of perennial food crops that hang around year after year.  Plants that do well in our coastal foggy windy not always sunny clay soils like artichokes, rocoto peppers, golden berry/ground cherry, autumn berry, bolivian sunroot and so on.  Next to the raised beds is a long strip of planting we call the pollinator garden.  Its function is to provide food and cover for the myriad of insects that are found in the garden.  Bees, hoverflies, beetles, and other helpful and beneficial little friends.  This is it here.  The pink chains of flowers are the winter early spring bloomer Ribes sanguineum.  This ones fruit are eh so so a little goopy not very sweet tiny bit bitter.  Catnip as the groundcover below.  Dead stalks from last year’s four o’clocks San Pedro Mirabilis jalapa.


This is the plan for the pollinator garden.  We sure are glad to have Christa Irwin outa the cold frig. and cheese locker and in the garden with us so that we can enjoy her horticulture skills:


pollinator 1 jpeg.png

By the Visual arts building we simply spruced this garden up a bit.  Or maybe it was liquidambared or prunused.  We took down the wall of jade plant and put in a curving bend of swampy lowland rush (Juncus effusus), bricks, and a few douglas iris.  Katie Renz’s plan showing us how to be stylish yet still concise and clear.


sweetgum 1 jpg.jpgThis is about it for now.  Monochaetum humboldtianum is happy against the Visual arts building wall.


And the bulbs of Amaryllis belladonna keep growing and spreading all over campus.  Let’s hear it for the dark pink strain of the naked lady !! (next to the Lunchbox).




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