Looking for something succulent to do this Friday and Saturday October 25-26, 2013? Join me at a Fall Garden Party at Waterwise Botanicals in Escondido, CA.
This two day event features Debra Lee Baldwin, garden photojournalist and author. As Debra introduces some of her favorite easy-care succulents for Southern CA gardens, she explains how to beautifully combine them in landscapes, gardens and containers. Based on her new book, Succulents Simplified, this fun and informative presentation celebrates the shapes, colors and textures of succulents, and gives tips for keeping them fat and sassy. Come be reassured, entertained and inspired! Book signing follows.
Next on the schedule is a Holiday Succulent Centerpiece Workshop.
Lois Walag, owner of Succulent Salon is “Obsessed” with succulents! She’ll teach you how to make a living centerpiece that will bring you years of perennial joy! Registration fee: $45. Price includes all material to construct a 10″ diameter centerpiece. Pruners are suggested and will be available for purchase. Limited Space. Students must register in advance via PayPal on Lois’ website at www.succulentsalon.com.
Saturday morning features Rebecca Sweet, author, designer, and book launch of her newest, Refresh Your Garden Design – Simple Strategies to Wake a Weary Garden. With all of the buzzwords and trends in gardening these days, how do you know where to begin? Rebecca takes a fresh approach to explain, simplify and reinterpret traditional design concepts for home gardeners of all levels. Both practical and inspirational, you will learn how to identify what has gone wrong with your garden and, more importantly, how to fix the problem. Book signing follows.
We are looking forward to the entire weekend and expanding our love and knowledge of succulents. Hope to see you there! Make sure to RSVP. This event is free!
Succulent lovers, here’s an amazing place to stop on your way to San Diego – Succulent Cafe in Oceanside, CA. Have a cup of delicious locally roasted coffee, nosh a fresh baked pastry, cozy up in a chair and soak in the expanse of colorful varieties of succulents, art, and creative arrangements. The owner, Peter Loyola, has created a virtual secret garden right in the middle of town – vertical arrangements accented by drift wood, unique beds of Aoenium and blue fingers in repurposed rain gutters, and local artwork line the private, serene courtyard. Peter said his goal was stimulate all the senses, and he has succeeded!
On the weekends, the cafe features local music, including an occasional visit by harpist Geri Afshari. The private patio is also available to rent for private parties, the perfect atmosphere for a small reception. Like them on Facebook to get notifications of special events including art shows and musical events.
Featured in the Best of San Diego in San Diego Magazine, this little gem is worth the trip. Stop in and tell them you saw them on Everything Succulent!
One of my new favorite places in town is a store called Mak & Jill at the Abode. Formerly Humble Abode, it’s located in a charming Spanish cottage right in the heart of downtown San Clemente. Each room is filled with unique finds, ocean-inspired art, antiques and painted furniture. The backyard is a succulent-lovers paradise with chalk-painted beach chairs, arranged containers, and nautical accents.
The two owners, Mak and Jill, have been friends since childhood, and merged their creative take on interior design and love for everything re-purposed. The place has been transforming week by week into a haven for beach-goers and shoppers looking for items that are unique and non-traditional. They are also stockists of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint and offer workshops in furniture painting.
With reasonable prices and tons of inventory, we are wishing them tons of success this summer. If you are planning on coming to San Clemente, this is a great stop. With plenty of restaurants, boutiques, farmers market (Sunday 9am – 1pm) and art show the first Sunday of the month, you can get a lot of beach fun packed in to a few hours.
MaK & JiLL at The Abode
Store Hours: Mon – Sat 10 – 6, Sun 10 – 5
228 Avenida Del Mar,
San Clemente, CA 92672
For more info, you can call the store at 949-303-5460
The new Abode
A sofa full of succulents
Great little finds displayed in the yard
Letters – design your own
Lots of succulents in unique containers
Monthly classes in furniture painting
Great chalk-painted sand chairs
My garden is overflowing with kale – I’m not complaining! It just gave me more incentive to try a new version of kale salad. This recipe was served at the White House to the Obama’s on Thanksgiving and was written up in the Washington Post. I made it a couple nights ago (it’s perfect for spring time) and it was BOMB! We had some leftovers, which made an amazing lunch the next day – not too soggy and the flavor maybe even better. Having not been acquainted with fennel, it was really a nice addition and not too overpowering. And don’t leave out the fresh jalapenos! I also used regular toasted almonds spiced with cumin and smoked paprika, since marcona almonds are not available at my local market.
White House Kale Salad
MAKE AHEAD: The dressing can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 days. Whisk to recombine before serving.
For the dressing
- 1 medium shallot, minced
- Juice of 2 medium lemons (about 6 tablespoons)
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 cup olive oil
- Freshly ground black pepper
For the salad
- 2 bunches young kale, washed and spun dry, stacked and cut into thin slices
- 1 bulb fennel (fronds, stems and outer layer removed or reserved for another use), cored and thinly sliced
- 4 radishes, thinly sliced
- 2 jalapeno peppers, stemmed, seeded and thinly sliced
- 1 scallion, white and light-green parts, trimmed and thinly sliced
- 4 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, shaved or cut into slivers
- 4 ounces spiced marcona almonds (one cup; see NOTE)
For the dressing: Combine the shallot, lemon juice and vinegar in a medium bowl. Gradually whisk in the oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
For the salad: Place the kale in a large serving bowl. About 10 minutes before serving, add the dressing to taste and toss to coat evenly. (You might not use all the dressing.)
Add the fennel, radishes, jalapenos, scallion, cheese and almonds, tossing to incorporate.
NOTE: Spiced marcona almonds might be hard to find in a store, but you can make your own. Whisk an egg white in a medium bowl, add 1 cup of marcona almonds and toss to coat. Combine 1 teaspoon of brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin and 1/4 teaspoon of smoked paprika in a separate medium bowl. Add the almonds and toss to coat. Spread the almonds on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees until lightly browned, about 15 minutes, watching carefully to make sure they don’t burn. Cool before using.
One of my favorite succulents is called Stacked Crassula. My sister-in-law, Ruth, gave me a one a few weeks ago, and I just repotted it. Stacked Crassula are very hardy and require very little care, and make a great companion to other potted succulents because of their pyramid like appearance. I like how some stand straight and others meander over the side of the pot. Here they are combined with Flapjack or Kalanchoe luciae and blue senechio in an old fashion tin french flower pot. This cost me NOTHING! The gift combined with other slips from the yard – done!
You’ve seen them at yard sales…old tool boxes in all sizes and colors. I love that rusty tin! I had Tom drill a couple holes in the bottom for good drainage, added regular potting soil, and snipped some succulents from the yard. I dipped them in a bit of rooting hormone (I like MiracleGro FastRoot from Lowes) and then plugged them in to damp soil. Don’t be afraid to crowd things in. Looks great in that little corner of the yard or on the patio table.
One of my favorite places in south Orange County is the Los Rios District in San Juan Capistrano. Lots of history, lots of old houses, but beautiful gardens and great little shops. Exit at Ortega Highway and follow directions to the mission. It’s right across the street at the train station. Cross over the tracks and you’re in a different world.
My Good friend Candace from Laguna Beach sent me these photos of their repurposed backyard fire pit. Her husband Brian is a talented landscape hobbiest and created this great focal point in the middle of the yard. In the pot is flapjack plant or Kalanchoe luciae (red), blue fingers of Senecio mandraliscae, with some cascading Aeonium. Looks like Brian left the rock in the pit and added some ornamental grass. Very low water, hardly any maintenance! Great idea, thanks for sharing.
Dramatic red on the flapjack plant.
The above ground firepit in front of water feature
Okay, so today we made a new succulent hanger, thanks to some wood donations. Have you checked out freecycle.org? If you need something for free or want to give something for free, it’s the place to go! I posted a need for used lumber and thanks to Nicole in Irvine, was hooked up with several nice pieces within the hour. I used this slightly bigger board with a burlap pocket much the way I made on my previous post. This board will lay flat in the sun for about a month, and then I will post new photos on how it has filled in. All cuttings are from my garden!