Looking forward to the Lair

I'm packing today - the house and for our Lair of the Bear vacation.  The blog may go into brief hiatus depending upon how much fun I'm having doing other things.

See also Cannonical list of things to bring to the Lair


0.52" Rain; season total 17.99"

0.28" of rain on 16 May
0.24" of rain on 17 May

For a total of 0.52". This is a large amount of rain for May in southern California and it fell gently over two nights, soaking in almost completely - ideal for gardens.

- Posted at great expense from my iPhone


Rain 0.05"; season total 17.47"

A surprise shower hit overnight and we got 0.05" in 90250.  Only 0.01" was recorded in the San Pedro annex. The timing of this rainfall isn't so surprising - we often get little showers into late May.  However, I have yet to record significant rainfall in June, so this is definitely near the end.


Local garden tour

I just discovered this in my email. It sounds like fun. There ought to be plenty of native plants, but also many Mediterranean plants on this tour.

South Bay Water-Wise Garden Tour

This Sunday, May 15, 2011
10:00 am to 5:00 pm

This is the first year of this tour, organized by Peggy Kramer, an OFG Workday attendee and whose sister leads a garden tour in the Oakland, CA area. 2 of the nine gardens shown this year are Ocean Friendly Gardens:

- Torrance area: This one was the site of a Hands-On Workshop (HOW) on Site Evaluation, sponsored by the City of Torrance. Then South Bay-Surfrider OFG Committee returned on Thanksgiving to join the owners, their family and OFG class participants to help build the garden. Now they just need an OFG yard sign!
- Gardena area: The owners attended an OFG Class and realized they already had an OFG and applied for a sign.

Check out the tour website.


Twisted and tied

While looking at houses the other day I saw an interesting arbor structure made of primitively bent, twisted, and tied copper tubing.

There's a small electric light at the top:

There's no overall shot. I think that I tried, but it didn't come across well and I discarded the photo.

- Posted at great expense from my iPhone

Rain 0.01"; season total 17.42"

A surprise shower hit last night bringing our rainfall total to 17.42".  Here's what the rainfall looked like in my back yard for the past several years. 

As you can see, this year was second overall in rainfall total for the years that I have tracked, but still only about 2/3rds of the largest rainfall in 2004-05.  This is an illustrative data set since it captures the full range of rainfall that California tends to get.  It also illustrates the frequently recurring or maybe constant drought theme in our state - only in years of greater than average rainfall (and snowpack) do we have a real surfeit of water given the public appetite.


Largest poppy ever?

The largest I've seen. The flowers here are from only one plant of our native poppy.  It's the coastal variety which has a yellower color than the safety orange of the interior variety.  The flowers have lasted an extremely long time on this plant too.

This one is planted near the coast on a hillside, so perhaps it's in an ideal habitat.  Shown below, it sprawls over a couple nearby rose bushes and an iris.

- Posted at great expense from my iPhone

First Matilija blooms

They are growing on shorter stalks this year than last and there appears to be some rust on many of the leaves.  Perhaps this is due to our wet winter.

Two days ago there was one. Today there were five or so blooms.

- Posted at great expense from my iPhone


More garden blooms

More allium unifolium (foreground) and penstemon 'Margarita BOP'. Assorted Gilia capitata.

Tritelia about to bloom

A CA native, but not locally native.

- Posted at great expense from my iPhone