Garden Secrets

Creative ideas for landscape design & outdoor living
Spring gardening, california, northern california garden, tulips, napa, wine country, landscape design, spring, flower garden, beautiful garden

Spring Gardening

dahlia, spring gardening, cutting gardens, flower gardens, montecito, organic gardening, edible gardens, landscape design, garden design, santa barbara, flowers

Fuchsia Dahlia perfect addition to a cutting garden

I love Spring Gardening. I love spring. The birds, green hills and the smell of pittosporum throughout Montecito. And, of course spring gardening. I’m not one of those gardeners who likes everything matching, neat and clean. My garden is like an old shirt, lived in and comfortable. What is your favorite part of spring gardening? I always plant a veggie garden and a cutting garden and can’t wait for the first harvest, the bouquets of flowers and the fun. Join me.

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permaculture, faux creekbed, drought, montecito, garden design ideas, drought tolerant landscaping, water rationing, staying within water allocation, montecito landscape, montecito, santa barbara, el nino

How To Stay Within Your Water Allocation

The big question on everyone’s mind seems to be how to stay within your water allocation. Here in Montecito, there is mandatory water rationing and it can be expensive if you go over your allocation. The reality is sinking in that El Nino 2016 may not give us the drought relief we had hoped for. Despite the fact that Northern California has seen significant rainfall, we are a long way from recovery. And now with this heat wave, there is no rain in sight. Here’s the step by step on how to stay within your water allocation.

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Montecito Magazine, montecito landscape, montecito, santa barbara, landscape design, drought tolerant

Montecito Landscape Feature Montecito Magazine

Montecito Landscape was featured in Montecito Magazine in the Spring/Summer issue in celebration of 45 years in business in Montecito and Santa Barbara.

Every issue of Montecito Magazine features a bit of local history and details not generally known plus interviews with architects, artists and so much more. We were honored to be featured in this iconic Magazine. Here is the feature. Enjoy!

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Sunset Western Garden Book, First Edition, Gardening Essentials, montecito landscape, montecito, organic gardening, landscape design ideas, garden reference, santa barbara

Essential Gardening Books

Which are your essential gardening books? We all need good garden reference books, no matter our experience as gardeners and if you are like me you have lots of them; for reference, landscape design ideas or when searching for solutions to specific problems. However, if you are moving to a remote location, desert island or planning a lunar colony, or if you just want to become a better gardener, there are two essential gardening books everyone should have. I couldn’t live without these two. Let me know if you agree. 

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Chris Cullen, montecito landscape, landscape designers, montecito, santa barbara, landscape contractors, montecito landscape, california live oak, mexican sage, salvia, drought tolerant gardens, drought tolerant designs, landscape design ideas

Memoir of a Montecito Gardener

In celebration of my 46th year in business I decided to dedicate a series of columns to my clients, you could say this is a memoir of Montecito from years past. Focusing on a particular period of time and particular patrons I hope that you, the reader, will gain insight into the Montecito of my youth and some of the “characters” inhabiting my recollections. I may have learned the basics of landscaping in college, but my clients, especially the early ones, helped me find my way. Though many of them are no longer with us, they all remain fondly ensconced in my memory and their teachings are still being employed in my gardens today.

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Rose pruning, Dan Bifano, Montecito, Santa Barbara

Rose Pruning Tips From Oprah’s Garden

Oprah’s Rose Garden is legendary. When she moved to Montecito a few years back, she elicited the help of Dan Bifano, one of the worlds most sought after master rosarians. To give a clue as to the volume of his talent and skill, he not only designed and installed the rose garden for Oprah Winfrey but for Barbara Streisand as well. Dan was also involved in the creation and selection of the namesake roses for Oprah (The Legends rose) and Ms. Streisand (Barbara Streisand Rose). Not long ago, I spent some time chatting with Dan about rose-pruning, here are his top 4 pruning tips.

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Santa Barbara, San Ysidro Creek, first rain, drought, montecito, drought tolerant landscaping, landscape design ideas, garden tips for southern california

Rain At Last! Has El Nino Finally Arrived?

Rain, at last! Finally, for the first time in years, we are having a real rain storm and it’s time for a celebration. As of noon Tuesday, we have received an inch and a half of rain since it started last night. Does this mean that El Nino is here? Keep your fingers crossed that this is only the beginning…Find out how to prepare your garden for El Nino.

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