How to Savor the Strangeness of Succulents

Home design succulent many succulents

Succulent. The name says a lot.  But it doesn’t reveal everything about these wildly compelling botanicals that surrender to even the least-green thumb. Thick-skinned and juicy, these intriguing plants sit somewhere on the sliding botanical scale between dry, spiky cacti and delicate leaf-bearing flora. Succulents love to preserve moisture deep inside their curious, pliant bodies.…

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Tiny Home Makeover

Tiny home airstream makeover

I was born in the deep south—Bakersfield, California. The first RV I ever saw had a bumper sticker that said, “Don’t Tailgate Me or I Will Flush.” This early impression of the RV/trailer crowd made me wonder, “Why do space aliens land in trailer parks?” Years later, I’m sitting here in my retrofitted Airstream trailer,…

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Home & Garden Events 2018 Calendar

Home and Garden events 2018 calendar

A round-up of home and gardening events happening in Santa Cruz County this year…   Saturday, 4/14 UCSC Arboretum Spring Plant Sale The Arboretum’s spring plant sale offers hundreds of varieties of water-wise plants, succulents and small trees from California, Australia and South Africa that are ideal for the Central Coast climate. Get there early for…

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Renee Shepherd Explains How To Grow Vegetables and Herbs From Seed

Renee Shepherd of Renee's Garden Circus, Circus carrots

The seed packets from Renee’s Garden—marked with their characteristic watercolor illustrations and descriptive, owner-tested growing instructions—can be found in independent nurseries and garden centers across the country. But it all began here, in the mid-’80s, on Renee Shepherd’s sandy-soiled Felton property. “A thousand years ago, in the mid-’80s, this used to be just a big…

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How to Prepare Your Yard for Mosquito Season

reduce mosquitos

This winter’s heavy rains mean more potential breeding spots for mosquitoes, which is why Santa Cruz County Mosquito and Vector Control (MVC) is putting locals on high alert for the spring and summer months. Keeping mosquitoes out of your yard is always a good idea—besides their itchy bites and annoying buzz, they can carry West…

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Midcentury Modern is Back

Midcentury Moden birdhouse

Blame it on the simple living movement, or maybe just Mad Men, but the soothing minimalism of midcentury modern decor is back in style. Suddenly every fashionable interior designer, collector and amateur DIYer is talking about the functional elegance of design from the middle of the 20th century (the late 1940s to early 1960s). So…

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