Author Archive for Pat Welsh

Composted Topsoil

Gardening Question From Crystal: I am going to be doing some container gardening this summer for the first time. I am trying to do it as organically as possible. I have bough an organic potting soil but would like to add some compost. I have limited space, hence the container gardening, so I have reached […]

Eucalypus Mulch

Gardening Question From Frank: Dear Pat, I am happy to hear your comments about eucalyptus wood, leaves and  detritus as mulch.  Over a period of forty years I have found eucalyptus mulch to be very beneficial to my garden in all ways.  We hands on, non abstract gardeners are the ones who know! Watering it […]

Using California Pepper Tree Leaves

Gardening Question From Kathleen: I’m testing my young orange tree with a ph tester, and noticed the soil is too far on the acidic side. I was wondering if the leaves fallen from my California pepper tree would help to balance the levels out?     Answer From Pat: Never dig anything into the soil […]

Grafting A Pollinator For Holiday Avocado

Gardening Question From Charles: We have a young Holiday avocado, 10 ft tall and about 5 years old. It has given us about 13 large avocados last year.  At this time we have 5 hanging on the tree.  We did not know when we bought the tree that it yielded fruit every other year.  We’d […]


Gardening Question From Gambriella: Long time fan. I have all your books and I can’t find any info on your month by month book or on your website as to how to care for lemongrass in Southern California (Orange County) on the coast side (Zone 24). Do I cut it down completely in the fall […]

Nectarine Suggestion

Gardening Question From Dave: Do you have a preferred nectarine(s) for coastal Southern California?   Answer From Pat:   Yes. My favorite is ‘Panamint’. I have recommended this for years and people still thank me for the recommendation. It is much better than peaches in coastal zones. Easy to grow and very productive.     […]

Drought To Deluge

From Dave: A thank you note for writing a succinct description of the California drought to deluge precipitation environment in one of your early books I found in my mother’s gardening library. As the drought continued and my neighbors replaced their yards with AstroTurf, gravel and desert plants, we held the course.   Implemented grey water […]

Pepper Trees

Gardening Question From Glennis: We are in escrow of a home in Banning, CA. There are what we believe to be two very large California Pepper trees lining either side of the driveway. I can direct you to the website that will show you the front of the house if you would be so kind […]

Adding Gravel To Lawn

Gardening Question From Jeff: Hi, I’ve read your article stating that adding sand to clay is a bad idea.  Recently, I came across advice about adding gravel to clay to improve the drainage, as described below, do you have thoughts on that?   Answer From Pat: I live in a Mediterranean climate. Topping a lawn […]

Compacting Clay

Gardening Question From Grant: A bit of a different question for you… We have an outdoor radio control car track where the surface is clay, which is ideal for running the cars on as its smooth, grippy, and not abrasive on tyres. The clay is regularly compacted with a 100kg plate compactor at OMC, however […]