Author Archive for kent.horner

A guide to local palms

Swaying gently in the breeze on the steep banks of Swami’s surf outlook or standing tall like soldiers going off to war in single file along Coast Highway 101, the Washingtonia robusta can be found almost anywhere here in Southern California. Commonly known as the “Mexican fan palm,” I used to hate this tree because […]

Don’t fall for low cost tree care

Unexpectedly, tropical storm Sasha regained intensity. Sucked inland by a coastal low pressure system, her arms began to swing tighter and tighter like a figure skater. Hitting the north San Diego beaches, with wind-whipped sheets of water, the storm created a water funnel, a miniature tornado condensed with moving torrents of evaporated ocean. Touching down […]

Plant giant birds of paradise correctly

As a landscape contractor, it is often difficult working within the parameters of a client’s preference for a certain foliage look and trying to create a hardscape that is attractive and enduring. Most people are not aware of the activity underground that many plants affect. Plant selection and planter size can make or (literally break) […]

Learn about our Torrey pines, inside and out

I used to be a climber. Not a social climber, but a tree climber equipped with a hand saw, Husqvarna limbing saw, climbing belt, hooks, clip line, pig tail, roping line, pole pruner, earphones and Raybans. I was quite the cool character back then, even if I did come home full of sawdust and sometimes […]

Plant from down under at home here in North County

This week’s plant of the week happens to come from one of my favorite places — South West Australia. The Melalueca nesophila originates from a small town called Albany located on the south west shores of the cold water latitudes bordering the Australian continent. How long has it been here in America? I have no […]

More to aloe than soothing sunburns

Even if you don’t like plants — don’t like to water them and darn sure don’t want them staining your clothes — you’ve gotta like the Aloe vera barbadensis, which just so happens to be my plant of the week. Most of us know or have heard about aloe vera and how it can be […]