“Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting, and autumn a mosaic of them all.” – by poet Stanley Horowitz.
An art metaphor to describe the seasons, how fitting!! Autumn has finally arrived here in the Bay Area, which means for our gardens it’s time to plant spring-flowering seeds, bulbs, and plants. I’ve written a few articles about the best bulbs and seeds to plant in the fall for amazing out of this world color in the spring. Let me share a few of those along with some photos. Continue reading “Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting, …
Delicious fresh figs all plump, sweet, super soft and dripping with nectar. I picked a bunch of fresh figs from my friend Devi’s garden a few days ago. The temptation to eat these figs right off the tree was hard to resist, I ate a couple right away and brought the rest home.
Fresh figs right off the tree – when fruit is this fresh it’s hard to mess with them by adding them to salads or making a dessert of some sorts. We just ate them in their pure fresh fig form – just delicious😋. To present these figs as a dessert option that same evening I served a few with aged Parmesan cheese and walnuts. Added a small glass of sweet port and I had the makings of a deliciout fig inspired all-natural dessert. Continue reading Fresh Figs & Lemongrass
Over the last month we have received many deliveries of organic heirloom tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, and squash from our neighbor Jim. Every summer Jim drops off bags and bags of homegrown vegetables. Hundreds of heirloom tomatoes, tons of squash, eggplant, and peppers in odd shapes, colors and sizes. See a pattern in the vegetables? Very Italian they are – that’s because Jim’s family is from Italy. During one of our conversations he mentioned that he has been growing beans from 100-year old seeds that his grandfather brought with him from Italy.
Continue reading Late Summer Bounty of Tomatoes, Eggplants, Peppers & Squash
We had just picked over 30 apples from our apple tree, after picking over 20 apples just a few days earlier, and even more few days before that. These apples were taking over my counter and the refrigerator drawers.
Mind you we have just one apple tree and its not that big, but that little tree has over 300 apples this year. I told Hitesh we need to stop picking the apples as we can’t go through them fast enough and I don’t have space for my other vegetables and fruits, but he said he doesn’t want them eaten by the critters, so he goes out and picks a bunch of apples every few days. He wants me to make a couple of apple pies or as he put it “Get creative, you can do it!” Continue reading Swimming in Summertime Apples from the Garden
Our friends Veena and Mani have a gorgeous home right here in the South Bay. They moved into their new home a few years ago, and though their home went through a major renovation right before they moved in, the previous owners left the backyard untouched. Their landscape is huge. It has a swimming pool, a tennis court, and a very large circular driveway at the entrance.
However this landscape was lacking in character. It needed a personal touch, a gardener’s personal touch that is. And that is exactly what Veena and Mani did. Give this large expanse of a garden their own unique perspective. This massive re-landscaping of their outdoor space took more than a year to accomplish, and the end result is something spectacular.
Continue reading Veena & Mani’s South Bay Garden Gem
Received another giant zucchini from or friends Karen and Aaron’s garden this year. Somehow in Karen and Aaron’s garden they consistently grow GIANT zucchinis. SERIOUSLY what is their secret? Unbelievable!
This year’s homegrown zucchini present from our friends was just as big as last year’s crop – over 1 1/2 feet in length! I had Rani hold it so you could see how huge this zucchini was.
Continue reading Giant Zucchini – Year Two!
I’ve been to Filoli Gardens in Woodside, California so many times that I’ve lost count. But somehow I’ve never visited the gardens in the summer. Hard to believe, even for me. I usually stop by Filoli Gardens in the spring for their Daffodil Daydreams Extravaganza, or in early summer around May for a Mother’s Day girls afternoon out, or to attend one of their classes on watercolor painting.
I’ve never gone to Filoli Gardens in the peek of summer – i.e. July. I’ve assumed all the flowers are frying in the summer-time heat, so why bother going? But this year I had an opportunity to stop by this beautiful garden with my Uncle Chary and his niece Geetha and husband Sampath who were visiting from Mumbai, India.
Who knew Filoli Gardens could be just as spectacular in the summer as at other times of the year? At least not I. The garden is amazing in the summer! Continue reading “FIght for a just cause; LOve your fellow man; LIve a good life.” FILOLI Gardens in the Summer
Harvest. Unexpected Projects Using 47 Extraordinary Garden Plants by Stefani Bittner & Alethea Harampolis is a fun, beautiful, inspiring, and informative gardening cookbook I recently bought.
I pre-ordered this book and I never pre-order a book. I like to read the reviews and have the book be out for a while to see what people think of it before I get it. But the name of this book got me hooked – Harvest! What a lovely name for a gardening book. Harvest speaks volumes just by the meaning of the word – the feel good images it conjures of fields and farms, of flowers and nature.
I ordered the book not knowing if I would like it, but that’s the beauty of Amazon. I figured if the book didn’t live up to my expectations I could easily return it. I finally got a copy of Harvest in the mail about a month ago, and with an open mind started perusing this book. Let me give you just a few of the many reasons why this is a wonderful book to add to your gardening and cookbook collection. Continue reading Harvest. Unexpected Projects Using Extraordinary Garden Plants by Stefani Bittner & Alethea Harampolis
My sister Banu who lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania has a lovely home and a beautiful garden. Banu is an avid gardener just like my Mom and me. But she is crazier than me when it comes to gardening. She enjoys it so much that just like my Mom she will spend hours in her backyard and lose track of time.
Banu’s garden is lush and emerald green. It’s the greenest garden I’ve ever seen. Continue reading Banu’s Emerald Green Philadelphia Garden
Our friends Swati and Tarak have a beautiful home with an amazing Italian inspired hillside garden right here in the South Bay. This graceful terraced back yard is a wonderful representation of how you can transform a steep hill into a lovely lush green landscape filled with flowers, greenery, trees, and a fruit orchard.
Continue reading Swati & Tarak’s Italian Inspired Hillside Garden Retreat