September 21, 2016

Wednesday Vignette: Salvage, and rain for ten minutes

How much rain did we get? Enough to wash the dust off the leaves of the orange tree, but not enough to wash the trickle-down mud off the leaves of plants below the orange tree. Used the Dramm wand for that. But it was real rain, and that was good enough. Gorgeous sunset last night, and beautiful cloudy day today.

The dark rock in the middle of this photo has been in the family forever. Pallet is from the feed store, circular saw blade from a local salvage/recycle yard, and hanging pots from a long-ago summer in Guanajuato. The manzanita branch was rescued from a lot clean-up near the cabin in Big Bear. Plants: Opuntia 'Santa Rita' on the left, with stonecrop 'Dragon's Blood'; a little Agave bovicornuta; Aloe erinacea (one of the few survivors of an aloe purge, since I can bring him inside for the winter); a cereus monstrose cultivar, one of six pieces a nice gent gave to me after he'd pruned the parent plants; and an Agave utahensis. Below them: Agave isthmensis on the left; little Opuntia basilaris brachyclada (a California endemic native to the foothills of the San Gabriels and the San Bernardinos); and down in the lower right corner, an Agave 'Sierra Mixteca.' The bougainvillea on the right is called 'Camarillo Fiesta,' just the kind of fantasy-of-Old-California name that would pull me in, but I love it for the pink and peach bracts.

This is the first blog post I've written since I retired. I remember blog-writing as an activity hobbled by time-constraint stress, and suddenly it's calm and restful. Amazing. During my last, busy year at work I bought a tablet, which is great for news and Instagram and falling asleep in an armchair at the end of the day, but unimaginable for blogging, at least for me. I want to get back to this.

I mentioned Instagram: you can see my photos here, or of course via the app. The IG crowd now includes Denise of A Growing Obsession, Loree of Danger GardenPam of DiggingReuben of Rancho Reubidoux, and Gerhard of Succulents and More, to name just a few familiars. It's a good bet that your favorite landscape designers, nurseries, nursery owners, shops, national parks, botanical gardens, potters, bird lovers, photographers, and garden authors are on Instagram, along with many other terrific accounts. Warning: time sink.

The Wednesday Vignette meme is hosted by Anna at Flutter & Hum, where she writes today about life's fluctuations. Perfect!