Monday, August 1, 2011

Landscaping Momentum - Dry Japanese Garden

Yesterday, my neighbor Arnolfo came over and offered me a bunch of his big specimen, I should say landscape sized cacti. It was very kind of him. One of the cactus is called Ming thing (Cereus validus f. monstrose), another was something that looks like notocactus, and a blue column called pilocerus palmeri. I have to give him some avocados when they are ready.

I just can't stop thinking about our backyard so I worked on it a little bit on this long weekend of mine. I just can't focus on drawing anything else at the moment. I was sketching out some character designs for one of my comic book characters and the drawing was going nowhere. It just wasn't working. So I went out and bought five bougainvillea plants yesterday. Today my good friend Yuho helped me to go buy the last tree I need for the backyard; a juniper prostrata from Ben K bonsai nursery. Once I get the trees into the ground I can begin to train them into the shape and grow them to the size that I want. The sun has been scorching our backyard and that is what keeps us from being able to enjoy that really nice big space. We desperately need some shade trees. We're in temperature zone 9 and it gets hot!

This time, due to budget constraints, I have to start with only the bare essentials, which are just the trees. We'll save up for the gravel for the dry garden idea later. I still plan to create that Japanese garden look, but with plants that are hardy in our temperature zone 9. This means instead of Azelia shrub balls, I will substitute with bougainvillea. I am still using pines, a juniper, kaki persimmon,and camelias so those are still traditional. However, I'm also using a Dr. Hurd manzanita in the very back southeast corner so things will definitely be interesting. I'm excited to move forward. I think it'll take about ten years to grow everything to what I have in mind. :) I made this drawing to visualize what I want our dry Japanese Garden to look like on the south wall.

The blue balls are bougainvillea shrubs. The darker taller shrubs will be camelias. The two trees in the back are Japanese Black Pines and in the far back on the right side will be the Manzanita. The black silhouette of the tree in the front will be the juniper.

This is a prostrate Juniper in a 15 gallon pot that I paid $85 for from Ben K Nursery in Rosemead, CA.  Bonsai benches or stands will be along the back wall. I drew a stone triad but again, that is maybe an idea for later when we have money.

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