Bring on the Butterflies…

After tons of research, I finally decided what to plant in our yard to attract butterflies.  As you may know, we’ve been creating a backyard wildlife habit, following the guidelines set forth by the National Wildlife Federation (NWF). My first goal in creating our butterfly garden was to add plants to our yard that will provide nectar.  Several varieties of Salvia (commonly known as sage) … Continue reading Bring on the Butterflies…

Visit a Garden for Free! National Public Gardens Day 2012

This Friday, May 11th, is National Public Gardens Day!  Better Homes & Gardens and the American Public Garden Association have collaborated to provide free admission to gardens throughout the United States and Canada.  What a wonderful program to help people discover and learn about their local gardens! Interested in attending?  Sign up through the Better Homes & Gardens page (www.bhg.com/gardening/celebrate-national-public-gardens-day/) to receive your coupon.  You … Continue reading Visit a Garden for Free! National Public Gardens Day 2012

Explore the Botanic Garden at Tilden Regional Park, Berkeley

Our planned visit today to the UC Botanical Garden at Berkeley wasn’t meant to be.  Today was free day, and, as a result, there was absolutely no parking.  We waited and waited for a spot to open up, but no-one was coming out of the gardens to leave, even though it was raining pretty heavily at this point.  My son was becoming more and more … Continue reading Explore the Botanic Garden at Tilden Regional Park, Berkeley

Attract Wildlife to Your Home – Create a Backyard Wildlife Habitat

After struggling with what to do with our little backyard for the last several years, I think I’ve finally found a solution. The main constraint for us is an oak tree that covers our entire yard with shade, making vegetable gardening difficult. The only plant thriving in our yard is rosemary. Kale does pretty well, but that’s about it. Lately, I’ve been considering creating a … Continue reading Attract Wildlife to Your Home – Create a Backyard Wildlife Habitat

Cherry Blossoms, Japanese Tea Garden, San Francisco

For a few years now, I’ve been wanting to see the cherry blossom trees while they are in bloom at the Japanese Tea Garden in San Francisco.  I walked by the gardens a couple weeks ago on our way to the California Academy of Sciences, and poked my head in to see if the trees were blossoming yet, but, no, they weren’t.  I thought, just … Continue reading Cherry Blossoms, Japanese Tea Garden, San Francisco

Newts in the Botanical Garden

We’re lucky to live in California newt country. These magical little creatures can be found throughout the hills in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. We’ve had luck finding them in Jewel Lake at Tilden and crossing the trails in Las Trampas. Our favorite place for newt viewing, however, is in the Japanese Pool at the UC Botanical Garden at Berkeley. During mating season, the newts … Continue reading Newts in the Botanical Garden