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This blog chronicles my journey through the Hawaii County Master Gardener program and beyond...

Plant Sale 2010

>> Wednesday, December 08, 2010

On October 30, 2010 our Hilo, Hawaii Master Garden Association had a plant sale in conjunction with the University of Hawaii College of Tropical Agriculture and Human resources Open House.  I was part of the  Advertising Team and created (4) print posters to advertise the sale and this video or the actual event.  It was fun, but lots of work!!!  The event started off in the rain, but the Public was there with their umbrellas waiting in line for the 9AM start!  After expenses we raised over $5,500!


Finally Certified!

I finished my MG certification hours and was acknowledged as certified in the December general meeting! But, still waiting for my certificate and new MG name tag minus the "trainee" tag!


Fairchild Garden - Florida

>> Sunday, September 26, 2010

I am off island for a while and my postings will be limted. However, I did recently go to the Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden in Florida. At he information desk I told them I was from Hawaii. They thought I might not see much that is different from where I live. Well, to me that does not matter. I enjoy garden design as much as the plants themselves and this garden is a great example of a well designed garden and landscape. The mature trees along with the colorful plantings and well maintained grounds makes this garden a must see! And although this was not a great "blooming" time of the year and it was an overcast day, I am glad we did not miss this attraction!


Wordless Wednesday - Where Raindrops and Color Mix

>> Wednesday, September 01, 2010


Vertical Gardening

>> Saturday, August 28, 2010

Found this video on YouTube. We have some areas for which we need a privacy screen, but have little of no soil space. So, I think a system like this will work! Or at least I hope to give it a try this winter!!!


Wordless Wednesday - The Kukui - Our state Tree

>> Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Aleurites moluccana


The Experiment Failed! Or did it?

>> Saturday, August 14, 2010

My experiment in ground covers failed to suppress our prolific Hawaiian weeds. I planted a cutting of ornamental sweet potato. It grew extremely well almost too well.  Much pruning would be required if I kept it in the landscape.  The plant is beautiful and looked great next to the black lava rock.  But,  Friday, I yanked it out of ground as a failed attempt at weed suppression.  To my surprise, I found small and large tubers!  Yes, sweet potatoes!  I Googled it and apparently these tubers are editable, not sure what they will taste like...

Back to weed suppressing ground covers.   I am also experimenting with an herb cutting a friend gave me.  I saw it growing as a ground cover in their yard. Looks like it can be pruned to create a thick mat.  It is currently growing quite well.  Only time will tell...


Citrus from Seed???

>> Thursday, August 12, 2010

I have been waiting for local citrus trees to bud (timing that activity is not easy without help from the tree owners!) so that I can acquire some scions to graft a citrus tree that I thought was already grafted!  It has never flowered and has been in the ground or a pot for at  least 2 1/2 years. Anyhow, I ran across this post talking about getting citrus fruit trees from seed.  Hmmmmm, I thought it could not be done. And perhaps my tree proves that right.  

So what do I do with my tree?  
  1. Assume it is from seed, leave it alone because one day the fruit will come?!
  2. Assume it is from seed, won't fruit and just admire it's beauty?!
  3. Assume it is from seed and graft lemon and lime scions?!
I think I favor #3, but my problem is finding the lemon and lime scions to graft!!!If you have additional information let me know!!!


Wordless Wednesday - A Little Home Grown

>> Wednesday, August 11, 2010



>> Monday, August 09, 2010

Yesterday, I removed a medium sized stand of beach naupaka about 60 feet from the ocean sea cliffs.  What a chore!  Some might ask why remove it?  Three reasons:

  1. The local mongoose like to use it to hide out in.  Not sure I want to give them shelter.
  2. It began to intrude on areas where it was unwanted (the neighborer's yard)
  3. A root fungus is turning it yellow and eventually it will die.  Not a pretty picture!
naupakaScaevola sericea is a native Hawaiian plant common to the shoreline and low mountains. The brilliant green foliage is quite beautiful next the contrasting black lava rock which makes up much of the shoreline on Hawaii Island.  

There is an interesting Hawaiian folktale explaining why the white flower is only a "half" flower (pedals missing).  Check out the story at Aloha-Hawaii

Unfortunately, even this beautiful native can fall victim to disease!  A soil born fungus will slowly wipe out that which once was healthy and beautiful! We first saw it in my neighbor's yard.  He thought someone had sprayed his naupaka with Roundup!  However, soils containing the fungus, Verticillium dahlia, effects the root system of many plants by blocking the uptake of water from the roots to the foliage.  And our neighbor did import soils from the Hamakua coast to establish turf grass. The turf grass butts right up against an establish naupka bed. I suspect this is where the problem started.  And it seems to be spreading!!!  Although the process it slow, it isn't pretty!!!
You can see the yellow leaves and die back on the left!


Wordless Wednesday - Our Young Landscape

>> Wednesday, August 04, 2010



>> Sunday, August 01, 2010

Perhaps some of you read the recent post at about lilies in pots. Well it got me inspired to try it! I do know that daylily rust is a problem in Hawaii, so I expect that to be one big challenge. Well, I've got to go and find some bulbs!

Posted by: Sunset, July 27, 2010
By Jim McCausland, Sunset Magazine

It turns out that among the flower bulbs, lilies are among the easiest to grow long term in pots. Add to that their summer-flowering habit, often-terrific fragrance, reliable reblooming, and imposing size, and you have a combination no deck or patio should be without. At the moment, I have eight terra cotta pots full of lilies coming into full flower for the second year in a row.

For the sake of experiment, I tried five varieties in several sizes of containers, including 9-, 12-, 14-, and 18-inch pots ranging in depth from 6 inches to 18 inches. There was no difference in performance among them. All the care I give them is regular fertilizing and watering, and the lilies do the rest.


Mother Nature - she giveth and she taketh...

>> Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Photos from the Hawaiian Lava Daily blog


The Freak of Nature - Opened!

>> Friday, July 09, 2010

Still looks a little freaky to me!

Here is the orginal "freak" photo.


Garden Art

>> Thursday, July 08, 2010

Found the link to these great bird houses on the The Gardens of Petersonvilee blog.  I want one!  Not sure what birds we would attract here at the shoreline on the Big  Island. I need to do some research on that.  Hmmmmm, I start a ceramics class on Firday.  I think I will put a ceramic birdhouse on my list of projects! 

Take a look at the Bird Garglers by Douglas Fey!  Photos from the Douglas Frey Pottery website


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