Monday, June 22, 2009

Inspiration... Behind the Scenes - Making A Garden

San Francisco Botanical Garden  Entry Border / Shade / Blue Bamboo

June 2009  -  Making A Garden ... Chapter 2

The Agony & ...the Word that Must not be Spoken

(the 'E' word having generated an inappropriate advertisement with Chapter 1)

San Francisco Botanical Garden at Strybing Arboretum

Entry Border -  Sun

Designed by 'Planet Horticulture'

Inspiration / Behind the Scenes
While waiting for slides of my garden's early days to be converted to digital images, I offer another bit of background:

On January 13 when BayAreaTendrils was brand spankin' new, I wrote about designers Roger Raiche and David McCrory, aka Planet Horticulture. The entry borders they designed for the San Francisco Botanical Garden at Strybing Arboretum opened my eyes, providing limitless inspiration, and helping to lead the way in the creation of my garden's plant palette.

Now, for one of those secrets promised in Chapter 1. I chose a customized blue, always referred to as Moroccan blue, as the main accent color for my garden. After a few years, I decided to introduce a contrasting color; to be an earthy terra cotta. Ready to begin painting, I dashed around from store to store, to buy a ready-mixed enamel paint. But my impatience won over. Unable to find what I was looking for, I seized upon the saturated yellow that appears in my garden today.

Leucadendron 'Safari Sunset' SFBG Library Garden below

More about 'Planet Horticulture' on link below:


  1. Oh, that Moroccan blue would have been nice, but I think a lot of people do that color in their gardens. The yellow is a more original choice! Can't wait to see more. Isn't the Strybing garden fabulous? Although those angles I don't remember noticing before - thanks for the closer look.

  2. So exotic and a world away from our plants in Bath!

  3. I am enjoying your "making of a garden" series. Love the way your design flows, and impressed at how much you've accomplished in a short time. As for the privet: sometimes I think part of gardening in a new area is a) killing things you thought you knew how to grow b) growing something you can't kill (and didn't know you should).

  4. Karen, I did use the Moroccan blue (I think it's more popular in the Pacific Northwest, perhaps), then added the yellow. And it does pop! The orange umbrella creates a triad of accent colors.

    Emma, Many of these plants must appear exotic and a world away. But my travels in Britain have engendered a great appreciation, and love for the English garden!

    PB, You said it! I certainly had little success growing plants that had thrived in Chicago. And as for the privet, let's just say it represents a humbling stage in my development as a gardener.