Archives for posts with tag: nikki koloff

084  IMG_5607

Hello and Happy Spring! The Forsythia and Daffodils are blooming. It’s that time again. Just getting in touch to begin scheduling spring clean ups, to discuss your 2015 gardening goals/needs this season and to ask ¿Que hay de nuevo? (what’s new?)

I will be giving a presentation on Rose pruning and fertilization on Friday March 30th at 2 pm at the Ignacio Library. The talk is free and open to the public. Come on by and lets talk Roses!



IMG_5376     IMG_5234

IMG_5231       IMG_5286  Untitled-Scanned-37  Untitled-Scanned-31

IMG_5655  IMG_5653IMG_5768 IMG_5748

IMG_5760  IMG_5751

Beautiful Hydrangea paniculata ‘Strawberry and Vanilla’ , Rose and fall blooming Japanese Anemone.








and Blue


The Huffington Post posted the top nine quotes about what Memorial Day means, and I thought the first quote was right on.

“You will never do anything in this world without courage. It is the greatest quality of the mind next to honor.” — Aristotle

Thank you to the men and women who have sacrificed their lives for our freedoms.



I have had several ideas and photos for my next post. Instead of doing separate posts, I decided to combine all the photos together. It turns out that all of my topics create a little story. Here we go:

Once upon a time there was a very root bound Aloe plant (Aloe ciliaris).


Magically this one Aloe plant became three…


Tip: Don’t be afraid to break up plants that are root bound. In this scenario, I was able to identify three separate plants. I  carefully pulled the plants apart and potted them up.


One of these Aloe plants made it into one of my custom succulent bowls that I made for a wedding present. My dear friends Nona and Grael recently got hitched in Tucson, AZ. Congratulations you two and super fun wedding! That means this succulent bowl traveled to the desert. A succulent homecoming of sorts.






Nice message.

It rained in Tucson while we were there, and the desert was in bloom.


The bloom on this Prickly Pear caught my attention in the parking lot of a gas station in between Tucson and Phoenix. Beauty is everywhere.


What’s this and how does it connect with the rest of the story? This is Xerochrysum bracteatum also know as Strawflower.  Occasionally you will find a cactus in big box stores that have a Strawflower glued to the plant to make it look like it’s in bloom. Sometimes plastic flowers are glued to Cacti (that’s just wrong).

If you are going to grow a cut flower garden, you need this plant. I grew Strawflower easily from seed, and these blooms are still intact from two seasons ago.



Beautiful cut flower that’s easy to grow. For the seeds, just pull apart the dried flower and this is what you will find:



The end. Happy growing!




I grew this Echinacea purpurea ‘Amado’ from seed two seasons ago. Below is seed that I saved from this plant above. “Amado” is a Spanish word that is translated into English as “beloved”, “loved one” or “sweetheart”. This variety of Coneflower  definitely has the potential to be the sweetheart of any garden.


This is a follow up from when I started ‘Amado’ Coneflower plants from seed. Saving seeds is a rewarding practice and a thrifty way to continue to add beautiful perennials to your garden. It takes some effort, and one of the first steps is to identify which part is the seed.


These pieces are the seed heads of the Coneflower. Many people will leave the seed heads for winter interest and for birds. If you intend to save seed from Coneflowers, make sure the seed head has dried out before you deadhead the plant and bring indoors to continue drying.  The plant should be done blooming before you harvest for seeds. Bring inside and hang upside down and allow the seed heads to continue to dry. I stored my seeds in a paper envelope in a dry and cool location. I avoid putting seeds in plastic containers because of mold issues.


Next, break apart the seed head wearing gloves!  Chaff is the extra stuff that you sift through to find your seeds.


Getting closer…


Here are the seeds that can be directly sown at 1/2″ when there is still a chance of frost.  Remember that some Coneflower seeds need to be stratified before they will germinate. Some Coneflower seeds are sold pre-chilled and ready to be used immediately. Instead of sowing seeds in milk jugs this spring, I have  the seeds in flats outside. Happy Growing!