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Cutting and propagating succulents

September 18th, 2017

Using succulents with other vegetation gives a beautiful appearance.

Depending on how you want your succulent to appear will depend on how you cut your succulents.

  1. If you want to have multiple heads  from your cutting then cut your succulent close to the head,  leaving hardly any stem. This will force multiple heads to grow.
  2. Cutting a few inches from the bottom of the head will  work best and give you a good growth.
  3. Cutting farther down the stem, for instances 2-3 inches from the bottom of the head, creates a longer stem to give height to a succulent arrangement but takes longer to establish roots.
  4. It is NOT recommended that you cut way down the stem because the stem will often die and not be able to support the head of the cut succulent.

How to turn your outdoor space into a bird habitat

May 24th, 2016

IMG_9564 IMG_0699 IMG_0691 IMG_0387 copy IMG_0193 IMG_0310 Archibald fountain copy

Having a Habitat for Birds

Spring is in the air and one of the most wonderful senses we can experience is that of hearing, especially that  of birds chirping and singing. One does not have to go to a Zoo, big park or animal sanctuary to experience the sound and sight of birds. You just need a little or big yard or porch that is friendly to birds. The three things they need are water, food and living spaces.

1.For water is is good to get a bird bath. Fill it with fresh water as often as you can.

2.For food it depends on the bird. Hummingbirds need liquid food and a hummingbird feeder that usually hangs from a porch or sits on a stand. One can also get a bird feeder that holds bird seed. A bag of bird seed will last a long time.

3.For a living space it is good to have wooden bird houses that stand or hanging bird houses that hang from a porch.

You will surprised how the birds will build up there houses with small sticks and branches to make it cozy for laying eggs and their families.

Some of the birds you may see are orioles, hummingbirds, wrens, finches, sparrows, swallows and road-runners.

it is good to have a variety of trees, bushes and hedges as well as flowers with nectar. It is good to have fan palm trees and hedges or ground cover like yellow or purple lantana. climbing flowers like morning glory and star jasmine, petunias etc.




September 1st, 2015


Roses if planted with good air circulation and adequate sun can be wonderful even in the fall. They however do not like the humidity. The humidity will suppress the number of blooms and the quality of the blooms. You will need to increase the watering if the temperature rises above 86 degrees. Do not cut the roses off with LONG STEMS. Keep your cut roses shorterr. This provides  shade for the base of the rose bush and also helps the nutrients to travel to the leaves and the blooms.

When watering your roses try to saturate the circle on the soil at the base of the bush and avoid just spraying the bush itself. Continue to feed your roses in August and Sept. but do not overfeed your roses as it can cause leaf burn. Prune modestly in Sept.


Artificial Turf

June 4th, 2015

_MG_0358 _MG_0377_MG_8007


Now that  many people are trying to decide if they should replace their sod with artificial turf there are many questions that come to mind. Especially the cost of the artificial turf.

First of all there are many different names for the same thing:

Artificial turf, artificial lawn, synthetic turf, synthetic lawn,easy turf, artificial grass , synthetic grass, fake grass

Basically these all mean the same thing.

Real grass has become known as SOD.

Artificial turf will run anywhere from $10.00 to $16.00 a square foot. Much depends on the size of the area, the shape of the area. How many cuts will be made and how many seams will be needed. Do your research first and try to visit someone that already has used a particular company. It was recently on the news about someone’s turf job coming out quite inadequate. The seams were a mess and the edges of the artificial turf did not fit flush to the cement borders or cement edgings.

Artificial turf is pretty easy to maintain. You can sweep it well with a good broom. You can use a blower on it. You can even vacuum it. Hosing it once in a while is a good idea, especially when cleaning up pet messes. if your pet does it’s business there often you will need to use water and a little detergent often.


Here are a few drawbacks of artificial turf:


1.It gets very hot in the summer months.


2. When doing sports like soccer, field hockey or football one can get turf burns on their legs especially. These can hurt quite a bit.


3. If your turf is by big trees that emit pollen, twigs or needles your turf can become messy quite often.




Water Crisis in California

April 8th, 2015

Cutting back water. 

Cutback in water use  has been requested by our governor, Governor Brown. He is requiring that each household cuts back 25% water use. As you know our state has not had enough rain to sustain normal water use in our households, especially southern California. Restaurants are even holding their servers accountable,  requiring that water is only given to  the customers that request drinking water. See our tips below. 

Using succulents with other vegetation  gives  a beautiful appearance.

_MG_9897 Using succulents with other vegetation gives a beautiful appearance.

Therefore we are suggesting you try some of these tips:

  1. Plant drought-tolerant plants such as succulents. Some varieties are  Euphorbias, Echeverias, Kalanchoes. There are many more. For palm trees use Sago Palms. For color in your yard try geraniums in sunny areas. 
  2. Keep plants like azaleas, camellias and hydrangeas in diffused sun- mostly shaded areas only. Keep these at a minimum unless they are already established. Hydrangeas love water so keep these at a minimum even though they are beautiful. 
  3. Consider artificial turf if you really want the look of grass. It is expensive to install but so will the cost of water be if you want real sod to look green. 
  4. Replace sod with pebbles, bark, shredded mulch or decorative gravel. For creative ideas in landscaping alternatives take a trip to KRC, Modern builders, RCP Block and Brick, Southwest Boulders, depending on your location. 
  5. Make sure you have no leaks in your irrigation or hoses. 
  6. Keep sprinklers on only in the morning before the sun comes up. 
  7. Do not wash your car often. Go to a car wash or wipe down your cars instead of washing them. 
  8. Keep a big bucket or container in your shower to catch extra water. Use this water to water plants that are quite tolerant. 
  9. Keep a bowl in your kitchen  sink to catch any extra water instead of letting water just run down the drain of your  sink. 
  10. Wash your hair less frequently.
  11. Make your showers shorter, or if taking a bath, keep the level shorter or reuse the bath water for something else. 
  12. Use your bath towels for a longer period of time. Designate a certain towel for each person in your family.

We know that some of these ideas may seem silly but we all have to work together to keep California from going into a real crisis.  These are only suggestions to help our customers out. 



September 30th, 2014


Worms make great companions for your kids!

Dogs and cats make wonderful pets but have you ever thought about worms. Red Wigglers are fun to have at home too! A worm box is a great way to engage your kids in an educational project that’s also fun. Unlike other pets, the supplies you need for a worm box are minimal, and no vet bills.! The end result of those productive worms’ food scrap chomping is premium compost you’d pay premium dollar for at a nursery. To find all you need to know about how to make a worm box and for more worm composting information visit Kids and worms on the internet.

How to prevent and deal with fleas.

September 9th, 2014

How to prevent FLEAS, FLEAS, FLEAS, besides chemical spraying!


Have you  really ever wondered how to prevent FLEAS???? We love our animals but we hate the fleas!IMG_1271 IMG_0005 IMG_1291 IMG_1288 flio buddy

Well here are some good sugestions that might work for you:


  1. Sprinkle salt, borax or baking soda  on the carpet and upholstery. Let it sit for a few hours then vacumn.
  2. Get a DEHUMIDIFIER. Flease love humidity. If you keep the humidity in the room under 50%, you ma be able to get rid of adult fleas and their larvae.
  3. Vacumn every day, or every other day.
  4. Clean your bedding and your pets bedding regularly.
  5. . Comb your pets coat with a special flea comb and clean it with amonia or a glass of soapy water.
  6. Make sure you flea comb cats especially. Its the best way to keep control of fleas on cats.
  7. Use the AVON product Skin so softspray oil  on yourself and on your pet. Its been used for many years.
  8. Wipe your shoes off if you have been places where there are unkown animals,  as we humans can track them in our homes with our shoes.

How to pick HYDRANGEAS

June 30th, 2014

IMG_9505 IMG_9506 IMG_9313HYDRANGEAS ARE THE MOST BEAUTIFUL FLOWERS! However have you ever tried to cut and arrange them to stay fresh and beautiful in your home and had them wilt and look dead. Well here are a few tips for keeping your hydrangeas looking good in a vase. You want to make sure the stems do not clog open. Steps below:

1.snip flowers when the stems are firmest ( coolest part of the day).

2. Try to pick at the woody part of the stem, not the greenest part.

3. Bring a bucket of water with you so you can immediately submerge stem in water.

4. Increase the hydrangeas’ water absorption by slicing each stem at a 45-degree angle.

5. Pierce the bottom of the stem with a straight pin.

6. VERY IMPORTANT-Plunge each stalk into boiling  water for 30 seconds. This helps prevent air bubbles and softens the sticky sad inside the stalk that can halt water flow.

Remove hydrangeas from hot water, then place in a vase of room-temperature water. Blossoms are ready to be arranged.

Succulents retard fires

May 19th, 2014

Aeonium VooDoo mixed with crown of thorns. above below is sticks of fire mixed with society garlic.  _MG_9899crown of thorns, geraniums, aeonium flowers. aeonium kiwis, 
_MG_9898 _MG_9901After the trauma of the most recent San Diego County fires most property owners need to think seriously about landscaping with a large amount of succulents. The reason that succulents are so fire retardant is that they are composed of 90% water.  Up to now succulents have not been fully apppreciated and used by people who most need them: developers, homeowners, landscapers and designers.

After the trauma of the most recent San Diego County fires most property owners need to think seriously about landscaping with a large amount of succulents. The reason that succulents are so fire retardant is that they are composed of 90% water.  Up to now succulents have not been fully apppreciated and used by people who most need them: developers, homeowners, landscapers and designers.

What succulents can do that works so well is slow way down the destructive effect of the chaparral firestorms we most recently saw the week of May 12th, 2014. True  fire retardant plants  may broil or bake but are very difficult or impossible to burn, unlike palms or oaks that can go up like Roman candle. By the time enough of the succulent’s water has been used up for the plant to be susceptible to burning, the fire has changed it’s course.

There are many varieties of succulents. Planting these varieties and mixing them with other plants such as gerraniums, salvia, society garlic and marguerite daisies  gives you a pretty array of color.  Here are just a few of the succulents that work well: Sticks of Fire ( Euphorbia tirucalli), Agave Americana ( century plants) barrel cactus, Echeveria rosettes, blue Senecio, Aeonium Voodoos and Kalanchoes ( flapjacks) Euphorbia Milli ( crown of thorns)



Garden Accessories

April 2nd, 2014

 koi pondIMG_0061IMG_8503_MG_8782Nothing puts the finishing touches on your outdoor living space like accessories. Just like the inside of your house, it’s those accessories that dress it up and help it to look lived in.

The type of accessories you use depends on the age of you and your friends, are there children and if so what age and of course how much money you have.

Even Walmart, Target and Sears have a wide array of inexpensive accessories to help decorate your living spaces.

Here are some accessories you can use:

  1. Potted plants and flowers.
  2. Bushes in Urns.
  3. Small and big succulents.
  4. Outdoor furniture such as Adirondack chairs
  5. Chaise lounges
  6. Tables for eating
  7. Wall hangings
  8. Clocks for outdoors
  9. BBQUE
  10. Wicker furniture
  11. Outdoor fire place or fire pit
  12. Fish Pond
  13. An Arbor or Arch

14.Stuff for children such as bikes, trampolines, forts and playhouses, sand boxes and a real must is a storage area for kid’s toys and sand toys.