Garden Q & A

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 […]

Anti Fungus Medicine To Treat Aspergilliosis

Gardening Question From Ann: Could I ask you about the medicine you talked about in a reply to another question regarding apergilliosis in compost dust. I have chronic hypersensitivity Pnuemonitus aggreivated by aspergilligus in the environment. I contracted this through working as an interior landscaper for 11 years working daily with large amounts of compost […]

Climate Change In The Garden

Gardening Question From Bill and Anita: Does your 3rd edition reflect the changing climate  growing seasons.  I have your older book  (2000), and I love the month by month guides.  We mostly have vegetables, fruit trees, are try to get a cutting flower garden growing.  We are in San Diego Zone 10A (according to nursery).   […]

Looks Like Goathead

Gardening Question From Brad: We have some goathead but also another plant that looks very similiar. The diff is that this plant does not thorn and it has pink/purple flowers rather than yellow. It’s leaves are fern like and finer. It branches out like goathead does. When young it is quite pretty but with age […]

Why Are So Many Tropical Leaves Colorful

Gardening Question from Piper: We were vacationing in Maui, which as you know, is quite lush. While I didn’t make it to the Iao Valley (apparently the 2nd rainiest place on earth), I was able to enjoy the foliage in and around our hotel. I was struck by the color and pattern in the leaves […]

Aurea Koi Bamboo & Ants

Question from Brigitte: Got a Koi Bamboo,  the ants are farming the aphids  (black) and living in the soil.  How can I get rid of the ants without killing them, and try and take care of the pest?  Live in a mostly wooden apartment building that has termites, and believe the ants are using their […]

Pruning Lavendar

Question from Heather: I live near the coast. When is the best time to prune back lavendar? I did it a few months back, but not aggressively. Now they are even larger, too big in fact. Answer from Pat: Prune lavendar as soon as the main blossom season has finished. Lavendar needs full sun. Otherwise […]

Raised Bed Planting

Question from Chad: I am just installed a raised 13 1/2 foot by 5 1/2 foot veggie bed in mu back yard that will get great amounts of south facing sun. I have filled the bed with good quality organic soil. I am using a soaker hose that is hooked into the irrigation timer. I […]

Clover Attracts Ladybugs

Gardening Question from Olivia: Do you think Lady Bugs are attracted to clover? I am a landscape designer and landscaper. I have a client in Clairemont, California. I just finished her garden. She told me that her garden was overgrown and not taken care of for many years. (She just bought a foreclosure house.) She […]

Beach Front Plants for English Seacoast Gardens

Question from Katie: Hi Pat, just found your www site and saw it said, “Send a Q to Pat”, so, here goes… location: seaside, south-facing (in England: the sunny side), sheltered terrace.  Required: architectural, evergreen, “WOW!” plants that will tolerate minus 5 centigrade in winter, occasionally a little lower, but not “cold & wet” as […]