Wednesday, March 18, 2009

2009 San Francisco Garden Show review

The 2009 San Francisco Garden Show held at the San Mateo Event Center opened on Wednesday March 18.

The new venue is quite an improvement over the former site, the Cow Palace.
Gone was the dark moody lighting and cave like feeling.
The new venue is light and bright and best of all, you can sit outside on comfortable picnic tables surrounded by lawn and trees and enjoy a lunch break between visiting the spectacular garden exhibits and shopping in the nursery concourse.

As always, all the gardens were beautifully presented but several were absolutely spectacular.

When casting a discerning eye towards the exhibition gardens I am looking for creative innovation, strong design direction , uncompromised quality craftsmanship and originality.
These are the elements that separates the seed from the chaff.

The garden designed by Rebecca Cole and company met all of the criteria above and then some.
From the custom designed fabric on the seating to the perfectly patinated metal planters to the intricately planted green walls she choreographed a multilayered symphony that delighted and ignited every cerebral emotion in ones body.

She and her team garnered the highest award given at the show, The Golden Gate Cup , and they deserved it.
From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

There is much to be said about judging a garden on its authenticity of design and not by the authority of its past.
The craftswomen at Mariposa Gardening and Design embraced the time honored craft of fine stone masonry and gave us a splendidly rich contemporary garden that touched deeply into anyone's soul who can appreciate the art of fine hand wrought craftsmanship.

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

The design team of Studio Replica , Wendy Owen Design and Garden Fantasia deftly blended haute horticultural couture with rusticated elegance.
It was if Fred Flintstone hit the lottery and hired Wilma a brilliant hot new decorator.
Textures were rich, colors were harmonious and the forms were artistically exciting.

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

The ladies from Fiddleleaf Fine Gardening and Design along with Susan Fenelon treated show goers to a sublime retreat. Their delicate interstitial design was environmentally sensitive. One felt as if they were wrapped in a thick velveteen cloak of natural luxuriance.

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

Ripple Effect Water Gardens along with Eco Systems Landscape didn’t fall victim to the ubiquitous Japanese Zen Water garden theme that always seems to show up at the garden show every year.
Instead they demonstrated authenticity of design and extraordinary craftsmanship.
Their attention to detail showed in every nook and cranny of their sanctuary.

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

Mary Te Selle of Quite Contrary Garden Design artistically blended found objects into objects of art.

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

The Master Composters and Alane O’Rielly Weber were educational and inspirational with their vegetable garden.
From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

Redwood Landscaping once again delighted the crowds with their garden ‘Paradise Lost and Found.
From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

Tierra Seca wowed us with his contemporary design.
And although I have seen his lit cube of glass in a cage at a prior garden show, I still find it alluring.

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

From San Francisco Garden Show 2009

Friday, March 13, 2009

$ 9.00 per hour -in charge of water management @ golf greens

From portfolioMay08.jpg

In times of drought, don’t look to many of the golf courses across the U.S. to manage their water effectively or efficiently.

For the last several months I have been intensively attending a series of water auditing and irrigation management classes.
Here in the arid west about 85 percent of our residential water usage comes from watering the landscape.

There has been a big effort by our local water agencies in collaboration with the Californian Landscape Contractors Association to educate those in the landscape industry how to save our clients money and to save a very precious natural resource; water.

So it is extremely discouraging to see this advertisement for a golf course in Petaluma California :

Greenskeeper-Full time/ Seasonal/ must be able to work weekends/ starting pay $9.00
Waterperson-Full time/ Seasonal/ must be able to work weekends/ late afternoons preferable/starting pay $9.00
Please send resume and cover letter.

Golf course experience is a plus but not necessary

These positions are for a private country club and golf course. We have two separate positions available

At $ 9.00 per hour do you think the person applying for these jobs , Greenskeeper and Waterperson , has invested time into educating themselves how to efficiently manage the water usage at a golf course ?

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

BAD - very very BAD , not to mention scary

When I first saw this driveway I thought that there was something wrong with my computer monitor.
Then the person who actually intentionally did this to their driveway explained how expensive and time consuming the process was I couldn’t believe my sore aching eyes.

Could you imagine living with this ! Or across the street for this ? Or even in the same state as this !!!

Here is a PERFECT example of investing money into your landscape yet because of poor design the project actually devalues the property.

If this house was to go on the market as is, the real estate agent would have to DEDUCT value from this house.

Here in lies a good lesson. If you are color blind or have absolutely no sense of design it would behove you , and probably save you ooooodles of money if you were to consult a landscape designer before defacing and devaluing your property.

From ranch house

From ranch house

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Spring comes to Northern California

Tulips soaking up the Northern Californian sun

From Loropetalum chinese

From Loropetalum chinese

And bees buzzing busily in the prostrate rosemary
From Loropetalum chinese

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Adapt Retool Transition

From Adapt Retool Transition In the Garden

ADAPT to the new economy by making due with what you have and maintain its value
From portfolioMay08.jpg

RETOOL your irrigation system so that it conserves water.
From Pool and Garden Project - The Napa Valley

TRANSITION heavy water use areas to vegetable gardens or drought tolerant scapes
From Alexander Valley

MAINTAIN your landscape investment

ENHANCE your alfresco time at home with your family
From Outdoor Room

NURTURE a vegetable garden
From Front Yard Potager

REDUCE water your water bills by using smart irrigation + soil conservation techniques.
From R E D