Local Roots

Search for mysterious leak leads to solution

Nothing can be more frustrating to a pool owner than having a beautiful pool that loses water, chlorine, salt and Cyanuric Acid. Now, most people know a pool must have chlorine to keep it clear and prevent algae and other biologics from growing in the water, but few know what a salt water pool does […]

Bamboo is the perfect option for creating a natural plant screen

Many times, when confronted with creating a plant screen for a homeowner in a tightly spaced tract where the two story homes are stacked nearly one on top of the other, I have had to explain the rules: Usually, the higher a plant grows, the wider it will expand outwardly from it’s base or trunk. […]

Ponytail Palms are native, easy to care for and easy to find

California has so many beautiful native and non-native plants that call this state home that it is often difficult to choose a favorite plant or tree, especially when you talk about landscaping. I like to use plants that are fairly drought tolerant, have some unique physical aspect about them and are easy to care for […]

Examining the history of the stately, graceful eucalyptus

Ah yes, the stately, beautiful and graceful eucalyptus tree. Love them or hate them you can’t help yourself but to listen when it comes to the many different stories about our own Australian transplant the eucalyptus tree and why they eventually ended up here in San Diego. Most of us locals know or think we […]

The long, local history of the avocado

Living and working along the coast for so many years, I was always struck by the number of old avocado orchards near the beach in Leucadia, Solana Beach and Encinitas. It seems that this amazing tree has been cultivated in California since 1871, when it was first introduced to Santa Barbara. Aguacate or Palta, as […]

Building Koi ponds

My newest client put me through the paces recently and insisted that I build him a new Koi pond and waterfall. Although I am no stranger to water features or ponds, making a living habitat that works for large, expensive fish seemed a bit daunting. So, I enlisted a little bit of Internet research and […]

Pouring over concrete history

Sometimes, living in these modern times we often take for granted the little things and really how much history and undertaking has passed for us to reach this point. We often walk on our driveways and sidewalks and enjoy the clean aspects of a new patio made from concrete but there is so much more […]

With summer comes weeds

So it is that time of year again. The sun is out and the temperatures are heating up, bringing with it a huge amount of unwanted weeds. Weeds of every sort have begun to proliferate from the copious amounts of rainfall we had this year. Lawn weeds, garden weeds and regular field weeds come in […]

Getting to know all about the art of Feng Shui

Feng Shui, as most of us cosmopolitan coast dwellers know, refers to the Chinese art of placement in the living space. But did you know the literal translation of Feng Shui? It means wind and water. In the Chinese culture, wind and water are associated with good health. Thusly, good Feng Shui is associated with […]

Consider hardscape wisely when landscaping

Part of creating a beautiful outdoor space or landscape relies upon the selection of a proper hardscape material suitable for walking upon that can punctuate and define the outdoor living spaces. As a designer and installer, a good contractor or architect must always be considerate of the client’s budget as well as to create a […]