Growing is Painful. The Alternative is Worse.

Many of my garden plants have spent more than a year in my care, and it became apparent this spring that several of them needed transplanting. I could see that the rosemary stood taller than its blue planter, the thyme had spilled over the edges of its pot, the oregano towered above its aqua home,Continue reading “Growing is Painful. The Alternative is Worse.”

Wildflower Weekend Wonder

I went to North Table Mountain Ecological Preserve this weekend. Before I got there, I felt drained from a busy and emotional week, and I hoped that a walk would help me clear my head. Everywhere I looked, flowers painted the landscape with purples, yellows, whites, pinks and oranges. Poppies spilled down valleys between basaltContinue reading “Wildflower Weekend Wonder”

Things That Helped Ease 2020

The year 2020 will go down in history as a tough one for so many people. It seems like everyone I meet has a difficult story. Some people have lost jobs. Others have lost loved ones. Still others live alone and feel the loneliness and lack of in-person contact, while some people working at homeContinue reading “Things That Helped Ease 2020”

A year of doing nothing

People have experienced so many losses this year: Huge losses, including jobs, loved ones and lives, and things such as gatherings, hugs and routines. Some people appear to have weathered quarantines and shelter-in-place orders by learning new languages, training for marathons and purchasing puppies. But those of you who found yourselves looking for a reasonContinue reading “A year of doing nothing”

Favorite Season

I feel slightly guilty for having a favorite season. It feels a little like preferring one child over another. There are aspects of every season that I love — at least for a little while. The flushed heat of summer feels welcome in June, but by September, I’m ready for a change. The first snowContinue reading “Favorite Season”

Remembering a musical mentor

I recently bought a used piano after almost 15 years piano-free. I managed to dig out several of my old, yellowing piano books, which have followed me from my childhood in Washington state to Arkansas to Florida and finally to California. And when I opened them, my piano teacher’s handwriting transported me back more thanContinue reading “Remembering a musical mentor”

Cutting back to grow

Many fruit and vegetable plants become more productive with pruning. This seems counterintuitive. How do you get more produce with less plant? The secret: Plants left to their own devices will continue to grow shoots and leaves and stems, but they won’t produce as many fruits and vegetables. They grow, yes, but it isn’t productive growth.