The Dry Garden: Vertical meadow

Posted on | July 29, 2011 | No Comments


Jasmine Hawes and mother Ginny Hawes (background) kindly posed for scale in this summer's towering sunflower garden, planted as part of a conversion from lawn to a water efficient native garden.

There’s overdoing it, and there’s what I did. After sowing a pound of sunflower seeds last winter, eight months later, the phrase “height of summer” can now be taken literally. In lieu of a front hedge, I have sunflowers. One astounded woman even came to my door asking when and how to plant them. Neighbors call my home “the sunflower house.” Out back, my yard is a vertical meadow.

Click here to keep reading “The Dry Garden” in the Los Angeles Times on how wildflowers can serve as a succession crop when replacing lawn. 

Click here to see what’s doing at the Theodore Payne Foundation for Wildflowers and Native Plants, and here for our regional treasure, the Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden. If you haven’t been to Rancho, go. There is no other public garden in the state that does a better job displaying our native flora in ways easily and relatively cheaply adaptable by home-owners in search of alternatives to lawn. Think of a year without leaf blowers and lawn mowers. Think of the hummingbirds. Think of your wallet. Finally, for the best round-up of regional garden classes, don’t miss Lisa Boone’s weekly datebook column at the Los Angeles Times.



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