Photos of selected plants in the garden on 5/28/2014 and commentary.
The Ribes aureum var. gracillimum (Golden Currant) had a brief bloom and then headed straight to ripe fruit. These taste good. I'm surprised the birds and other critters haven't discovered them.
Silk Tassel (link is to 'James Roof' silk tassel) plant which I am growing for the silk tassels, of course. The tassels seem to come from the branch ends in photos I've seen.
San Marco Growers has this to say about Silk Tassel 'Evie', which provides a nice 100+ year glimpse of human and botanical history:
A densely growing
evergreen large shrub or small tree with opposite 1 1/2 to 2 inch long
elliptically shaped leathery leaves that are dark green on the upper
surface and gray with woolly hairs underneath and slightly wavy margins.
This plant is dioecious (male and female flowers on different plants
and this cultivar is a selected male flowering form - in the fall appear
the male flowers buds that open in late winter as stunning display of 8
to 10 inch long creamy white tassels that often take on a purplish hue....Plant in full sun except in hot inland locations...and give only occasional to very little summer water. ...This
cultivar was selected by the legendary bay area plantsman, Wayne
Roderick who passed away in 2003. Wayne selected it from a road bank on
the Kruze Ranch in Sonoma County in 1971 and this original plant was
destroyed during later road development. Wayne noted that he selected
this plant because it was more compact than 'James Roof' with more
branching and shorter internodes and named it to honor Evie Matheson of
Manning's Heather Farm in Sebastopol - a bit interesting that a male
clone is named for a woman but Wayne Roderick was quite the practical
joker! The Saratoga Horticultural Foundation introduced this plant in
The genus was named after Nicholas Garry, assistant to David Douglas
when they explored the western United States. It was Douglas who
reportedly first collected seed of Garrya elliptica in 1828 and it was in
cultivation in California as early as 1860. The specific epithet is in
reference to the elliptic shape of the leaves.
Thank you, San Marcos Growers!
Here's something that I welcome in moderate doses - leaf chewers. This is a plant over at the San Pedro annex. I looked but couldn't find the critter responsible, but generally I'm glad to see holes in the leaves of native plants since it more than likely means that some native critter is making a meal from it. Old style gardeners might get out the Dipel dust or even spray Malathion, but I've moved strongly away from that approach, either tolerating the damage or spraying with a sharp jet of water or hand picking the critters if it seems urgent to do so (such as on tomato plants).