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Go Outside and Play

As professionals involved in environmental horticulture, we are responsible for the outdoor places people see and experience.  We make gardens.  We are united as members of a worldwide guild whose role in society is to make life better for all because we design and tend planted areas for everyone.  Wherever I travel, I try to connect with nursery professionals and native plant people.  In every instance, I have found we share a common motivator – creating beauty through the science, craft, and art of growing plants.

“He that plants trees, loves others beside himself.”  Dr. Thomas Fuller, British physician (1654-1734)

Do you share a passion for native plants and naturalistic plantings?  Do you believe, as we do, that in our encounters with nature, we find inspiration and healing?

A true California garden incorporates native plants into naturalistic design, and brings “nature,” or at least a miniature representation, into the built environment.  Making it happen is a high calling, requiring that we seek inspiration.  We need models on which to base our own creations.

We need to go outside.

 “Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of autumn.” John Muir, US (Scottish-born) conservationist & naturalist (1838 – 1914)

“You will find something more in woods than in books. Trees and stones will teach you that which you can never learn from masters.” St. Bernard, French abbot and saint (1090-1153)

garnet peak
Garnet Peak at last light of day, Winter 2010
With the start of a new year, 2010, we plan to pepper this blog with posts called “Go Outside and Play!”  Here you will find staff picks for our favorite, seasonal spots in southern California for quick trips and day hikes, and perhaps a few spots farther away.  Whenever you come back from a good time playing outdoors, your work with plants, or in garden design, installation and care will have new meaning.

Make 2010 the year you wear out a pair of boots, get a daypack really dirty, take a thousand photos (no need to buy film anymore!) or record a million memories.  What you learn out yonder over hill and dale, you can apply back home in your day job.  Environmental horticulture is indeed a high calling with fantastic rewards.

Syc willow oak
Sycamore, Willow and Oak, Winter 2009