## 2020-04-14

### Almost 16" of rain this year!

An incredible week of rain gave us nearly 2-1/2 inches in one day bringing the rainfall total to 15.93". That's a substantial amount for most places in coastal Los Angeles and on the fat side of a "normal" annual rainfall.

Something I particularly appreciated was being at home during the rain.  My work is normally quite insulated from weather, so it was nice to hear and see the rain falling.

I doubt there's much rain left in the season, but it didn't disappoint.

Date    Amount (in.) Cumulative
11/20/2019 0.53 0.53
11/21/2019 0.03 0.56
11/29/2019 1.88 2.44
12/1/2019 0.35 2.79
12/4/2019 1.02 3.81
12/7/2019 0.15 3.96
12/23/2019 3.29 7.25
12/24/2019 0.04 7.29
12/26/2019 1.69 8.98
1/17/2020 0.28 9.26
2/9/2020 0.13 9.39
2/10/2020 0.03 9.42
3/8/2020 0.05 9.47
3/10/2020 0.19 9.66
3/11/2020 0.02 9.68
3/12/2020 1.05 10.73
3/15/2020 0.35 11.08
3/17/2020 0.08 11.16
3/20/2020 0.16 11.32
3/23/2020 0.99 12.31
3/24/2020 0.01 12.32
4/6/2020 0.4 12.72
4/8/2020 0.4 13.12
4/9/2020 2.49 15.61
4/10/2020 0.32 15.93


## 2020-04-09

### 0.40" of rain on 8 Apr. More on the way

Our rainfall total is up to 13.12" as of Wednesday the 8th.  That's quite a nice amount for us. Rain continues this week - it's a cold storm, unusual for April, and the heater is on, mostly, while the rain falls though sometimes during interludes of sun the sliding door is wide open to the fantastic flower display in the back yard.

## 2020-04-02

### Engagement and being a citizen

As I write this, (April 2, 2020) we are in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, which seems like to disrupt the normal course of our lives for the next year or more.  After you've taken care of yourself, your family, and your friends, I urge you to turn your thoughts to the institutions that you support.

Aside (skip this paragraph if you want):  The title of this article taps into a feeling I have that societal engagement is part of a citizen's job and I credit the novel Corona virus for giving me the space to articulate this thought on virtual paper.  I'll leave it at that, lest this paragraph become more weighty than the others.

I suspect that government and corporate grants will enter a down phase in the next year or two, so if you believe in a cause then you might want to consider investing in it.  This doesn't have to be money, though that is sometimes the easiest investment.  It could be a gift of your time to create a bit of content.  It could be engagement by showing up at (virtual, for now) events or commenting on a blog post or news article.  All of these activities are things I would consider investments but the sponsoring institution also sees as engagement, which is one metric that they will use assess success or failure, to solicit grants, or to sell advertising.  It's one thing to count web traffic, but it's quite a bit more powerful to count people that are willing to pay to support you.

Since this is a native plant blog, the examples below pull where they can from native plant and ecology-oriented examples.

## 2020-01-10

### Pillared rose using a timber post

In England we saw a number of ways of trellising roses that aren't commonly seen in S. California.  There's this drift of rambling rose over a felled tree that I though was particularly picturesque:

 Rambling rose on a felled tree, England, 2019
This requires the sort of space that we are typically short on in S. California, but there was another technique we saw that I subsequently learned was called pillaring: A climbing rose is planted near (12" from) the base of a wooden post and twined about it making more efficient use of space and allowing incorporation vertical garden elements.

The following two pictures after the jump make the concept clear.

## 2020-01-09

### 2019 Western Redbuds were outstanding

2019 was the year that Western Redbuds along my driveway really were impressive.  They were planted in early 2012.   In previous years I was happy with them, but this year the colors - even after their bloom - were outstanding.  Redbuds bloom in the early months of the year, but quickly way to pods.  The flower bloom is beautiful but ephemeral.  Something happened this year that was unexpected: Normally, I dislike these pods which follow the flowers that the tree is known for, but this year they were such a deep red / mahogany color that I felt they just continued the beauty show.  Here they are in May:

More below the break

## 2020-01-08

### Erigeron glaucus in a pot

Here's an idea I could implement at home. The photo is from Santa Barbara Botanic Gardens and doesn't look all that imposing.  However, that is Erigeron glaucus, which has a wonderful extended bloom during other parts of the year. The photo was taken at the end of summer (10/5/2019) so it's looking nice and tidy given the extended heat it's been through.

## 2020-01-06

### CA natives in England

Juli and I found this ceanothus at Hidcote gardens in England when we visited last summer.
What is likely Tritelia and a poppy were other obvious California natives.

## 2020-01-02

### Timber Posts

It's true - they do exist at specialty providers like C&E Lumber.  I wrote about an impending visit earlier.
More photos below the jump.