Archive for the ‘Nature’ Category

Regrowth After Fire (September 6, 2020)

Sunday, March 7th, 2021

A few photos taken today when I hiked around the base of the mountain. Surprised there is so much plant activity. There has been very little rain since the fire.

Clearing Made by Bulldozer


Fire Retardant Still Visible
Fire Retardant

Miscellaneous Images











Photos posted the day of the fire.

Senecio articulatus, Botanical Illustration, Photos, Books

Thursday, March 4th, 2021

My Senecio articulatus looks elongated. During the day it sits on a window ledge. Why elongated? Could this be normal growth?

Senecio articulatus

This morning I googled Senecio articulatus. Most of the images did not look like my plant, but an interesting and very cool thing happened. I found a link to a botanical illustration site. One Senecio articulatus illustration was dated 1781. Gives me pause to think my plant could be connected to the plant in the illustration.

I spent some time looking at several illustrations. The images are so beautiful.

Senecio articulatus at

Links and Photos

The Online Books Page–Botany

Great day for finding loads to view and read!

Power of Plants

Sunday, February 28th, 2021

A few days ago I looked out the window and noticed the Iris perfectly framed by a dead Brugmansia. The Iris was left over after transplanting. So, I popped it in the ground in its current location, to enjoy it every time I looked out of the window.


Must remove the dead Brugmansia. It was a cutting that struggled through last year.

The Iris was a gift from a relative in the 80s. It started its journey in Pennsylvania; was transported to Ohio, New Jersey, Georgia, San Jose (CA), and finally to the California Central Coast.


Plants have the power to connect us to people, places, and memories.

A Volunteer

Wednesday, February 10th, 2021







Monday, January 25th, 2021

I grew up in Ohio, lived in New Jersey, and attended grad school in Washington. All locations have seasons. I do miss seasons. The anticipation of change, the changes.

It doesn’t rain often on the California Central Coast. Excited to read that rain was in the forecast. But would it really rain?

I was a tad disappointed that today has been a perfectly sunny day. Has been windy enough to topple a potted Norfolk pine, but sunny. Where is the grey gloom associated with rainy days? Just when I was wondering when the rain would start, it began to hail!


While still sunny.

Sweet Essence of the Magnolia

Friday, January 22nd, 2021



Billbergia nutans

Sunday, January 10th, 2021

Queen’s Tears


San Marcos Growers–Billbergia nutans

World of Succulents–Billbergia nutans

Gulf Fritillary Caterpillars

Saturday, December 26th, 2020

The courtyard garden needs cleaning and clearing. The drought offers loads of dropped oak leaves and pine needles.

Passiflora and Pandorea vines growing on the trellises need some care.

Passiflora and Pandorea

When I started to clean and clear the dead bits and the dropped oak leaves and pine needles, I saw a Gulf Fritillary caterpillar.


This morning I found another one.


Late for them to be hanging around the garden. Good that there is plenty fo food for them.

If they make it through the chrysalis process, this is how the will emerge.

Gulf Fritillary Butterfly

The chrysalis of the Gulf Fritillary looks a bit like a dead leaf.

Gulf Fritillary Butterfly

Plan to put the cleaning on hold to give the caterpillars a chance of becoming butterflies.

Converted Egyptian Paste Piece

Sunday, November 29th, 2020

While reorganizing my garage studio space I found one of my Egyptian Paste test pieces had apparently been used as a hotel for mice.

Egyptian Paste Box

The mice managed to get in the garage and found all of the dried and drying plant materials sustaining.


When I was cleaning the space after the mice were relocated, it didn’t occur to me that I should look through the boxes of pieces stored in the space.

The box was constructed of hardware cloth and Egyptian paste. After firing the box, it was lined with black nylon and bound closed with strips of the same fabric. The fabric was dipped in diluted wood glue and hit with a heat gun, for a shrink wrap effect. I like that nylon can look like a skin, exposing the structure under it.

I have posted about this piece in the past. Pleased that the pieces have not developed a light coating of sodium.

Egyptian Paste Vessel

The pieces were constructed of hardware cloth, some had the addition of nails.

Egyptian Paste Vessel Nail Detail

The Egyptian paste was used like spackle and the lot fired to cone 015.

What to do with the mouse house? I am leaning toward popping it someplace, out of the way, in the garden.

Acacia Seed Pods

Thursday, November 19th, 2020

Acacia Seed Pods

Acacia Seeds Pods

The interior of the pod is beautiful!
Acacia Pod Interior

Acacia Seed and Foliage