Gardening Articles

It just so happened that the year I was nudged and inspired to begin this gardening blog about my twenty-year old Northern California garden, was during the first year of the pandemic–a year with so many changes and challenges. One good change — one of the few bright spots in it all — was the tremendous surge of pandemic gardening that happened, among both beginning and seasoned gardeners.

As I said in my welcome post, the garden has for decades been an important source of sanctuary for me, of de-stressing, of nourishment, exercise, inspiration, enjoyment and connection. I wish that for everyone, especially during these continued difficult times!

So I hope this helps fertilize the inspiration — that as many of you as possible can find continued sustenance and peace in your potagers or local parks, your windowsill greenery or indoor oasis, your allotment or balcony gardens.

And if you cannot go outside right now, I hope you will find some measure of relief and feeling of nature’s connection here and with other gardeners sharing what they do online — and that you have a nearby window filled with open sky and visiting birds and the waft of fresh air carrying the scents of nature to you.

Below are gardening-specific posts. To meander through all the posts of The Compulsive Gardener, including ones on upcycling and garden-inspired creativity, visit the blog page here. I hope you will enjoy them and write in to chat — over the garden fence, as it were. Check back often for more posts on all things gardening!


How to plant a wildflower meadow in California

Sowing A Wildflower Meadow

Sow your wildflower patch in winter to enjoy the blooms in spring. Read about when I broadcast California poppy and arroyo lupine seeds and how I tend to them in my native wildflower meadow. Watch the lumbering native bumblebees collect pollen.

Red kuri winter squash

October Garden–fall harvests, winter crops, tucking the worms in & sharing the abundance

The October garden is a wild thing–overgrown and intertwined–with the last of summer’s exuberance. The squash tendrils have crept like fog and pulled themselves into uncharted lands and left behind bizarre shapes in their path. Cooler nights are leaving little patches of plant cemeteries littered here and there, joining the falling leaves of the grandfatherContinue reading “October Garden–fall harvests, winter crops, tucking the worms in & sharing the abundance”

Monarch Butterfly!

First Monarch Butterfly Sighting, Saving Seed from California Poppies, & an Unfortunate Contaminant

Monarch Butterfly Sighting Today I let slip a little scream of excitement when I spotted the first monarch butterfly here in our garden–at least the first one I can remember in the two decades we’ve been at our current location. Growing up in the Midwest many decades ago, we used to see Eastern Monarchs allContinue reading “First Monarch Butterfly Sighting, Saving Seed from California Poppies, & an Unfortunate Contaminant”

The area we fancifully call the courtyard, outside of the house, is now an accessible and inviting place to garden or sit with a cuppa.

Garden Paths of Decomposed Granite — keeping the garden accessible as I age

This year we did the best thing we’ve ever done in the garden. And actually, we didn’t do it. We hired a professional landscaper to install granite paths for us. I want to say a special thanks to the amazing crew at Anchordoguy Landscaping for their exceptional work! Not only is the result stunning, butContinue reading “Garden Paths of Decomposed Granite — keeping the garden accessible as I age”

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