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Looking Foward to Fall in Southern California

There's always a lovely little stream running at Oak Canyon Nature Center

“Nuclear summer,” I called the hot, dry fall of Southern California. I claimed, we only have two seasons: 7 months of spring and five months of summer that get worse before finally relenting in late November.

My perspective has shifted of late, and I no longer experience fall as a burden to be endured, but as a magical time to be savored. The light is more golden as the days wane, and the stars twinkle more brightly. Energy and creativity replace the lazy, languid pace of summer. Hot days evaporate into wonderfully cool mornings, and one can get away with wearing layered “fall” clothing - a personal favorite!

Baja Fairy Duster, happily blooming away in late summer. I love this magical little plant, it provides a lovely pop of color all year long!

For many California natives, this is a time of dormancy and rest before the rebirth of the renewed growing season in October - a “second spring”. I've even heard rumors that the California lilac and redbud bloom again, but I haven't found evidence of it yet! I daydream about further growing the garden. How to squeeze in must-haves and impulse buys. Editing what didn’t work in the past year, and filling the beds with the known and new, and experimenting with seeds and seedlings. 

I like to think of nature taking care of her children. Providing a bounty of harvest goods for humans and wildlife alike and then preserving them with daily 8 hour blasts of kiln-like heat.

It's fascinating to observe the eternal tug of war of the seasons as the intense heat is interrupted by brief periods of wet and cool that eventually turn over into Southern California’s winter/spring.

It’s a great time to take lovely hikes under the shade of live oaks and draw in the splendor of living in Southern California! Happy savoring and experimenting, fellow gardeners!

Yours Truly,

Sarah Eakins
MLHMGT Board Member

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The Mary Lou Heard Memorial Garden Tour is a yearly, self-guided charity event held by the Mary Lou Heard Foundation, a California nonprofit organization dedicated to continuing Mary Lou's life work.

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9681 Flounder Drive
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