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last update 4/21/99

Copyright © Lawrence Turner 1999
Lawrence's Garden Logo My garden was originally an orange grove. In the 1930's Glendora was one vast orange grove. It was not owned by any one person but by several family farms each of which had a "grove" house, a home surrounded by an orange grove. After the second World War many newly returned veterans migrated to Southern California and the orange groves began to be removed and replaced by housing tracts. The last working grove in Glendora went out in the late 80's (It was only a few acres).
My garden still has 17 original trees. They were all cut off 2' feet above the ground in the 1940's in an attempt to stop the spread of the Japanese Beatle that had infested the area. After the World War Roy Davis acquired the property and let the orange trees grow back. When I purchased the property in 1988 the trees had become rather "woody". I started pruning them in the hope that I could save them and preserve the feeling of Glendora that I had experienced as a child when many orange groves still existed. Now, over 10 years later, the surviving 17 trees produce a decent crop of Valencia Oranges every year which I sell to a steady clientele. They are ripe and sweet on the first day of summer.
I have several specimen Oak trees. The giant Live Oak has a spread of over 70 feet and is over 50 feet tall. Two more Live Oaks are in the back, one of which has the treehouse in it. I also have a Cork Oak and a Blue Oak. There are eight sapling live Oaks which I keep pruned down.
I have an apple, an apricot, a persimmon, two figs and a plum that are older trees that were here originally. Younger trees which I have planted include two nectarines, two peaches, a plum, an apple, a guava, a persimmon, a pear(An Jou) and four avocados (Dyer, Haas, Gwen, and Whitsell). Other citrus trees include a lemon, a cumquat, a pink grapefruit(Ruby Red), a navel orange and a lime(Bears). Some of the aforementioned are dwarfs. There are also a small olive, small manzanita and a toyon.
I have several Bonsai Trees. The oldest is a cedrus deadora which I have had for 25 years. It was given to me by a friend after the apical meristem had been cut off by an uninformed employee of Monrovia Nursery. It has an apical meristem now and has quite a nice shape. (It took me 10 years to get a decent one going!) I also have a bosai live oak, a blue oak, a liquid amber, a hollywood juniper, a jacaranda and orchid tree that are all over 15 years old. Other potted trees include several palms Sago, King, Fan, both dwarf and standard Vietnamese Fish Tail Palms and a Flame Tree.
Besides the trees I have seedless grapes (Thompson and Flame), boysenberries and blueberries (Sunshine Boy and Georgia Gem, heat tolerant) for fruit. Other vines include a pink jasmine, morning star jasmine, pink wisteria, lavender wisteria, honeysuckle, orange bougainvillea, magenta bougainvillea, and a creeping fig.
I have several plants that were quite popular in the area during the craftsman era which include Shrimp plant, Justica (Jacobinia), Myrtle, Heliotrope, Privet, Japanese Arelia, white and pink Camelia, Philodendron, Nandina and Bird of Paradise. Other popular flowering plants include Agapanthus, Gerber daisies, Daylillies, Cymbidium Orchids, Clavia, Blue Potato, Roses (both hybrid and original), Rodadendron, Dianthus, Periwinlkle, Impatiens, Red Hot Pocker, Cuphea Rosea (False Heather), Baby's Breath, Canna, Pentas, Alstromeria (Peruvian Lillies), several varieties of Penstemmon and several varieties of Azelia. Geraniums including a magenta colored creeper, Cordata, and the following scented varieties Lemon Rose, Aroma(menthol), Citrosa and Lime. Species of lavender include ‘Goodwin Creek' , ‘Fat Spike Grosso', ‘English' and ‘Royal'. Some local native flowering species include Aniscanthus Wrightii, Zauscheria Latifolia and Ceanothus (California Lillac).
Scattered throughout the yard I have many species of salvia including ‘Purple Majesty', Mexican bush, Involucrata, ‘Rose Autumn', ‘Salmon', ‘Marachino', Sinaloensis, ‘Cherry', ‘Nueva Leon' , ‘Purple Haze', ‘Indigo Spires' which the hummingbirds are very grateful for in the fall.
Culinary herbs include parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme. Perennials include the following culinary sages ‘Golden', ‘Purple', ‘Variegated', ‘Tricolor', ‘Pineapple' and ‘Garden'. I have three species of rosemary ‘Blue', ‘Pink, and ‘Golden Rain'. Species of mint, which I use to make my ice tea more refreshing, include ‘Lemon', ‘Lime', ‘Orange', ‘Apple', ‘Persian', and ‘Peppermint'. I have ‘Lemon', ‘French' and ‘English' thyme planted around the sundial. I grow both ‘Curled' and ‘Single Leaf' parsley which are not perennials but biennials.
Other perennial culinary herbs include french tarragon, winter savory, fennel (bronze and green), cumin, horehound, oregano(Greek, ornamental, golden and official), sorrel, feverfew, burnet, marjoram, anise hyssop, chives, catnip and lemon balm.
Bulbs include Narcissus, Bearded Iris, Fresia (many varieties), Daffodils, Giant Crocus, Tulip, Hyacinth, Grape Hyacinth, Dutch Iris, Gladiolus, White Hyacinth, Lecojum(White Bells), Oriental Lillies (Stargazer), Daylillies, Calla Lilly(purple and white) and Crocosmia Montebria.
My favorite fragrant plant is Fragins Osmanthus(a base for many perfumes) but Gardena (two types), Plumeria (white), Freesia (Oberon, Royal Blue and heirloom) as well as the Peace Rose all vies for second.
I have a section of cactus including a 15' tall Mission , a two types of Organ Pipe(each over 6'), a Cereus Peruvians and many potted ones including Rattail, Peanut, Lobivia, Mamilliria, Cleistocactus, Christmas, Prickly Pear, Cerus and others. Succulents include Haworthia Cuspidata, Escheveria Derenbergi, Aeonium Canariens, Echeveria Pulvinata, Sedium Morganium (Donkey Tail), Crassula Perforata(String-of-Buttons), Cotyledon Orbiculate, Haworthia Fasciata Variegata, Epiphlyllums(two varities) and several others . Large specimen succulents include an Elephant Foot and a Jade Plant. I also have a Stapelia Hirsuta (Carrion Plant)which always has me searching for a dead animal before I see the bloom.
Ferns include Rabbit Paw, Sword, Asparagus and Leather.
I grow many annuals as well. Flowers that I let reseed themselves include California Golden Poppy, Columbine, Verbena, Crimson Rambler Morning Glory, Asslyum, Larspur, Camomile, Pom Pom Poppy, Sunflower, Coreopsis, Johny Jumpups, Rock Rose and Cosmos. I plant sweet peas from seeds I collect the year before. For my wife I plant a few Pansy plants and a couple Cyclamen by her conversation area which I pick up at the nursery.
My favorite summer vegetables include the following- tomatoes; Better Boy, Beefsteak, Lemon Boy, Cherry and Italian Pear: squash; Zuccini, Spagetti, and Sunburst: corn both yellow and white; different varieties, an early and a later, planted to mature about a month apart: bell peppers; yellow, red, green and purple: beans; Royal Purple, bush and Cowpeas; chilies; Anaheim, Yellow Gem, Banana, Jalapeno, Serrano and although I have planted and been successful with Habeneros I will not grow them again! Ouch! The peppers, chilies, and tomatoes I grow from pony packs while the squash and corn I grow from seed.
Annual summer herbs I grow include several varieties of basil my favorites are; Cinnamon, Anise, Red Rubin, Broad Leaf, Lemon Thai and Purple Ruffles. Lemon Thai and Purple Ruffles dry best and retain an excellent basil flavor for long periods if properly stored. Summer Savory is the only other summer annual I grow. I have about given up on Dill, too delicate, and Cilantro, even small plant bolt except during winter. All these I grow from seed.
I suppose if you have read down this far I didn't entirely bore you to death with my recital of the plants I have growing now. I have attempted to grow many others but the above plants will grow in the climate of the San Gabriel Valley were I live. My soil was extremely poor when I moved in being made up of the sand and rock of the Big Dalton alluvial fan and destroyed by chemical fertilizers and pesticides. I mix in as much organic material as is feasible every year and use only natural organic fertilizers (blood meal, bone meal, sea shell lime(for ph), bat guano, steer manure, etc) My vegetables I mulch. Each year I have gotten progressively better results. My bell peppers last year were 4 feet high. I picked 168 tomatoes in one picking, about a week between pickings, last summer. I never let my Zuccinni get over an inch and a half in diameter and prefer them to be finger size. In my vegetable growing area I grow only peas in the winter to help replenish the soil. Any plants that appear unhealthy or become infested I immediately pull out. If aphids are a problem on perennials I mist them with insecticidal soap. I keep all my fruit trees pruned back pruning them back after they lose their leaves in the fall. I pull all the annuals at the end of the growing season and I keep the soil well mulched. I do my best to keep the soil slightly damp year round. I water everything by hand or by hand set sprinkler. I attempt to trim all my evergreen plants within a month of winter solstice and do any repotting at the same time. Perennials and bulbs do best if planted or transplanted in the fall. Have I forgotten anything? Probably! I know I didn't list all my plants! There is always room for one more plant! After reading the above can you guess how large my lot is? It is a third of an acre! The house, the garage/workshop/laundry, the garden shed, the playhouse, the storage shed, the cathouse and the Bar-B-Que shed take up 2700 square feet while the front walkways, the patio and two other small "landings" take up another 500 square feet leaving about 14000 square feet free. Of that more than half is covered with pea gravel. (I quit counting after 100 scoops) Water percolates well through gravel and the Golden Poppies, Verbena, Asslyum, Coreopsis, and others grow fine right up through it!


More photos to come!

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<BGSOUND SRC="easyfeel.mid"> Copyright © Lawrence Turner 1999