Debra Lee Baldwin

Seen at the Succulent Extravaganza

– Posted in: Succulents

Admittedly, this year's Succulent Extravaganza at Succulent Gardens nursery near San Francisco was a bit of a blur for me. When I arrived, I quickly assembled plants and supplies for the two presentations I was giving; set up the book table and signed and sold books; and briefly said hello to friends I see just once or twice [...]

Muertos that Garden? ¡Claro!

– Posted in: Succulents

I love the culture of Latin America, especially Dia de los Muertos (All Saints Day, Nov. 1). It's a celebration of loved ones who have passed away and who, one day a year, return to be honored and fondly remembered. Depictions of los muertos show them happily doing things they enjoyed in life, and are a charming, highly collectible folk [...]

KPBS-TV in My Garden

– Posted in: Succulents

"As the market for water thirsty plants dries up, sales of cacti and succulents are thriving -- and San Diego's North County is ground zero for all things succulent." So begins a segment on KPBS-TV by Alison St. John, a bureau chief who has been covering local issues for decades. Alison interviewed me in my garden [...]

Succulents That Like Stress

– Posted in: Succulents
Stress, Aloe dorothaea (sc)

If there's a good thing about our too-hot Southern California summers, it's that heat makes certain succulents turn color. A case in point is Aloe nobilis, which in my garden grows in nutrient-poor decomposed granite with minimal water. In winter, the same plant reverts to green. Such "stressed" succulents---which seal moisture in their leaves as [...]

My Garden’s Blue Belly Lizards

– Posted in: Miscellaneous

If you garden in the Southwest, doubtless you have Western fence lizards (Sceloporus occidentalis), also known as blue bellies. They do push-up displays on boulders and scurry if you get too close. They're part of my garden's ecosystem, and I'm grateful to them for eating insects. Other than that, I seldom gave them a thought...until recently. Boys visited this summer---my [...]