SoCaLNativescapes Photos

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SoCal Nativescapes


NOTE:  Also see many more photos of SoCaL Nativescapes / regional-native-landscaping I've done (and non-native landscaping/plantscaping also) on the main photos page, by clicking on 'PHOTOS' in the green bar above.


Note:  Click on the Blogs near center bottom of page to see pictures and descriptions of the plants mentioned below, and many more.


 SoCaL Nativescapes is a focus of mine about creating attractive, congruent, soulful landscapes with the more interesting and colorful plants(and select plant species combination-groupings) native to the Southern California region from south-central California through central Baja, with associated terrain elements, focusing on particular regions and habitats within this larger region for a given landscape composition character, such as a Southern California islands landscape, San Diego-central-scape, Coastal Chaparral/Scrub, Beach-scape, Foothill Chaparral, Oak Woodlands, Desert Landscape, Desert Transition, North/South/East/West exposures, Mesic, Riparian, etc.   On a related note, for potential built landscape compositions especially for residential situations, the concepts of 'Elfin Forest', 'Elfin Forest Edge', and 'Cottage Floral', are all very much applicable to one degree or another with the different habitat types mentioned in the previous sentence.   The term 'Elfin Forest' is typified by the chaparral plants of our coastal to foothill regions, and in built spaces the composition would be done and developed with cultured refinement.  A direction of example and inspiration are some styles of Japanese landscapes and the concept of Bonsai compositions, though not as styles to be copied necessarily but to give some essence of style-inspiration in creating a composition unique with the plants and environment-habitat of our Southern California region, in the sense of creating a type of idealized habitat with the plants and terrain elements and terrain contours, potentially with basins [such as a 'dry creek' contour connecting with a pond basin, both having water only during rainfall events] and rises, and potentially including selective use of particular types of dirt(such as a type of decomposed granite for surfacing, though the native in-situ dirt is likely to be all that's used in most cases), rock, boulder, and mulch.  Pathways could be made using either the existing on site dirt, and/or decomposed granite, flagstone, or other stepping stone materials could be used.

Where San Diego natives are chosen for a landscape theme, one of my dearest interests is the making of Elfin-Forest-Edge compositions with a variety of colorful and interesting local species which potentially includes annuals, grasses, vines, perennials, subshrubs, medium shrubs, big shrubs/small trees, and possibly local succulents and cactus, along with mindful contouring-shaping of the terrain to make an engaging layout of a sort of idealized cultured habitat within the space of a typical yard area, which mimics in a small scale what occurs in some portions of the local native wild, and which also optimizes water funnelling catchment during rainfall events due to basin areas within the 'sculptured' terrain.   

The SoCaL islands also have a very interesting assortment of endemic(or just 'native', also occurring on the mainland) shrubs and trees that do well in Southern California's mainland coastal climate, as you'd expect, and being that I live near the ocean in Pt. Loma/OB in foothill 'decomposed sandstone' soil, I have especial interest in these.   The islands I include extend from the Channel Islands near Santa Barbara, through to Guadalupe and Cedros Islands in northern to central Baja, since they are all considered to share the same ‘floristic province’.  Some examples of interesting plants from the islands(either endemic or varietals of species which are also native to the mainland) include the Guadalupe Island Palm(Brahea), Island Ironwood(Lyonothamnus), Island Bush Poppy(Dendromecon), 'Catalina' California Fuchsia(Epilobium), Island Snapdragon Bush(Galvezia), Island Tree Mallow(Lavatera a.), Ceanothus arboreus, Island Manzanitas, Island Cherry(Prunus)(also native to a mountain region in central Baja), Quercus tomentella(Island Oak), Island Morning Glory, 'Canyon Prince' blue rye grass (Leymus), Island Snowflake (Constancea), Pertiyle incana, some bush Buckwheats (Eriogonum)(such as species 'arborescens', 'grande rubescens', and 'giganteum'), and yes, even the Torrey Pine, which, besides being native to Del Mar / La Jolla, is also native to Santa Rosa Island, - the island originally named WI'MA by the Chumash natives.  The northern channel islands were inhabited by the Chumash, and the southern channel islands were largely inhabited by the Tongva and Payomkowishum groups.  Btw, the San Diego region was mainly inhabited by the Ipai and Tipai groups (together known as Kumeyaay). 

San Diego and the nearby foothills and lower mountains, and including similar habitat areas into northern Baja, have an interesting collection of native plants to build interesting landscapes with, such as:

Heteromeles arbutifolia (Toyon), Malosma laurina (Laurel Sumac), Rhus integrifolia (Lemonade Berry), Comarostaphylis diversifolia ssp. div.(Summer Holly), Cercocarpus minutiflorus (San Diego Mahogany), Quercus dumosa (Scrub Oak), Quercus agrifolia (Coast Live Oak), Dendromecon rigida (Bush Poppy), Eriogonum fasciculatum (a local Buckwheat bush), Sambucus mexicana (Elderberry), Calystegia macrostegia ssp. arida (San Diego morning glory), Xylococcus (Mission Manzanita), Ribes speciosum (Fuchsia Flowered Gooseberry), Prunus ilicifolia ssp. ilicifolia, Arctostaphylos glandulosa ssp. crassifolia (Del Mar Manzanita), Arctostaphylos glandulosa ssp. glandulosa, Arctostaphylos glandulosa blue-grey leaved variant, Camissonia bistorta (Foothill Suncup), Camissonia cheiranthifolia (Beach Suncup), Ceanothus tomentosus ssp. olivaceous (a Blue Ceanothus), Ceanothus verrucosus (a White Ceanothus), Cneoridium dumosum (Bush Rue), Dudleya Pulverulenta (Chalk Dudleya / Liveforever), Dudelya edulis, Dudelya brittonii, Dudleya lanceolata, Eriodictyon crassifolium (Yerba Santa),  Heterotheca sessiliflora (eucalypt-scented golden aster), Epilobium californicum(California Fuchsia), Keckiella cordifolia (Heart Leaved Keckiella), Lonicera subspicata (a local Honeysuckle), Mimulus (Monkey Flower), Ornithostaphylos oppositifolia (Palo Blanco), Pseudognaphalium bicolor (lemony scented everlasting), Pseudognaphalium californicum (maple syrup scented everlasting), Quercus berberidifolia (Scrub Oak), Salvia Clevelandii (Sage), Salvia mellifera (Sage),  Satureja chandleri (San Miguel Mint), Simmondsia (Jojoba), Venegasia carpesioides (Canyon Sunflower Bush), Encelia californica (Coast Sunflower/Sunflower Bush), Bahiopsis(Viguiera) laciniata (Marigold Sunflower Bush), Stipa lepida(local bunch grass), Leptosyne maritima(local coreopsis), Yucca schidigera, Hesperoyucca whipplei, Mammilaria dioica, Bergerocactus emoryi, Ferocactus viridescens, Opuntia littoralis, and more...!

Occasionally I will use regionally native plants to play a part in a non-native themed landscape as a matter of the color, structure, and/or textural presence it gives to the landscape design intent, along with drought tolerance in most cases.

FOR THE RECORD, THE FOLLOWING ARE THE DOMINANTLY KNOWN LOCAL NATIVE AMERICAN NAMES FOR THE SoCaL ISLANDS.  {Associated resident tribes were Chumash(northern islands), and, Tongva(aka: Gabrieliño)(southern islands) and Acjachemen/Payomkowishum(aka: Juaneño/Luiseño)(also southern islands). Alternative pronunciation spellings as well as different names by the different tribes are included.  In addition to the tribes inhabiting their respective island groups, the mainland territory of the Chumash was from San Luis Obispo to Malibu, the Tongva throughout the Los Angeles area, and the Payomkowishum from the southern Orange County area to northern San Diego county.  Btw, the Kumeyaay peoples(Ipai, Tipai,...)(aka: Diegueño), who populated the majority of the San Diego region and into Northern Baja, were not significantly present in the island populations, from what is known of the historical records (although they certainly knew about the islands, since on some clear-horizon days Pimu and Kinki (Catalina and San Clemente Islands) are adequately visible from the Pt. Loma ridge, Mt. Soledad, Cowles Mtn., Blacks Cliffs, and various other San Diego mounts)}{Btw, the Islas Coronados were apparently uninhabitated by aboriginal natives, except for brief visits}:






GHALAS-AT = SAN NICOLAS ISLAND, Chumash name, though inhabited by Tongva and/or Payom., (ATAUKI, possibly a name used by the inhabitants)


PIMU('Pipimar' - Payom.) = (SANTA) CATALINA ISLAND, Tongva

KINKI / KINKIPAR('Khesh' - Payom.) = SAN CLEMENTE ISLAND, Tongva/Payom.


At Torrey Pines, above; and South Miramar, below, near the 52 freeway, with a row of the San Diego native Silvery Felt Leaf Yerba Santa(Eriodictyon crassifolium ssp. crassifolium) in back, and the new SoCaL Nativescapes panel.  Btw, Eriodictyon c. c. loves asphalt, and it'll even grow through it if it can find a crack, being that it's a tough, drought tolerant, rhizomatous 'runner'(like 'running bamboo') type of plant.


Austral Floristics

Austral Floristics:   Fundamentally speaking, austral means south/southern. Southern California could also be called Austral California. The southern hemisphere could also be called the austral hemisphere, and the plant 'kingdom' of the southern hemisphere has been referred to as the Austral Floristic Kingdom, or Realm, from a global perspective, just as there is the Boreal Floristic Kingdom/Realm, which refers to plants native to the northern hemisphere, or, what could be called the boreal hemisphere.   (Likewise, hence, the northern lights and southern lights also being known as aurora borealis and aurora australis, respectively).

And so my choice for this additional adjunct business name is to emphasize the focus and appreciation of plants that are typically associated with having a southern reference/association of native occurrence, whether it's Southern California, The Southwest, Southern Europe, and of course, the Southern Hemisphere taking center stage with the wonderful abundance of unique attractive plants native especially to South Africa and Australia(!), and to lesser degrees New Zealand and South America, all of which have climates/environments over substantial areas similar enough to Southern California's various climates such that many of the plants from these regions can grow well in Southern California outdoor landscapes.

Additionally, I have the especial interest, though not exclusively, of creating landscapes/plantscapes that create a geographical sense of place, such that only species of one of the geographical regions mentioned above is used.  So that would mean, to give one example, a landscape composed of only South African plants(though further limitations of plant choices may be used within the South African region, since there are subregional plant palettes within that general region).      



F r u c t u s   Cultura  

Fructus Cultura:  I grow fruit and I help people grow fruit for the purpose of producing prime quality fruit which you’ll enjoy eating and getting nourished by, as well as for the beauty of the fruit, both on the tree, in hand, and displayed in your house. ‘Fructus’ is Latin for fruits, plural, and cultura is Latin for culture in the sense of 'to cultivate'.  I particularly focus on Grapes with seeds, Mangos, Apricots, Opuntia cactus fruit, Figs, Peaches, Nectarines, Citrus, Loquats, Guavas, Plums, Avocados, Litchi,...  

Note:  The word Fructus is derived and occurs from both verb and noun usage, with multiple meanings being enjoyment, delight, satisfaction, produce, product, fruit, profit, yield, output, income, effect, result, return, reward, success.   Fructus was a legal term used in Roman Law to describe products which originate from both natural sources and legal transactions.




Garden Tree Culture 

I’m here to keep your trees, and most plants for that matter, nicely structured, nicely maintained, nicely managed, per the style that suits both you and your tree best for your place, up to 25’ height.




Irrigation Services

I'm here to provide your complete irrigation services to keep your landscape watering system working well and efficiently, so your plants do well.




A combination of Botany and Horticulture. That’s what’s on my vehicle's license plate. I came up with this supplementary business name to reflect my appreciation for Botany and Horticulture. There’s much overlap in what Botany and Horticulture cover, but the main differences are that Botany is the science of plant biology, distributions, classification/taxonomy, and other related topics, and, Horticulture is the science and art of growing plants under human management, especially related to residential and ornamental usage, which also includes topics covered in botany, such as taxonomy, - the use of systematic scientific names. The usual application of taxonomy in Horticulture is with the genus, species, and family of plants and plant groups.        

And what is Gardening?.... Well, what you've already associated with 'Gardening' your whole life is true enough.  And with regards to what I'm stating here, Gardening is a big part of what Horticulture is.  

The etymology/origin of the word Horticulture shows the root word 'Hortus' is the Latin word for 'Garden', so hence, we could also call it, in many ways, 'Gardenculture', which is akin to the Old English 'geard' and Old High German 'gart' which both mean 'enclosure/yard', from which we get the word 'garden'.   And the etymology for Botany/Botanical shows the Greek root words 'botanikos' and 'botane' which refer to herbs, pasture, and broadly speaking, plants.  And so, Bot-Hort can be interpreted as 'Plant Garden' (and btw, is basically a Greek-Latin conjugation/hyphenation).  But of course a garden implies plants.  But then there are 'rock gardens',.. and, if you so choose, anything else you can dream up with the word 'garden', - referring to a collection of something or things that has/have, more or less, a cultivated arrangement resembling a garden as we would typically think of, broadly speaking.

Arboriculture is Horticulture with a focus on trees primarily, and also shrubs and vines, with regards to their structure, utility, trimming management, ecology, and health. Bushes and shrubs are basically synonymous terms. Forestry typically includes a whole forest system, the whole ecology, watershed systems,... though largely focused on the trees.  Agriculture is human husbandry of substantial food production for commerce and/or subsistence, whether plant or animal.  The etymology of agriculture comes from Latin 'agricultura' which means 'cultivation of land', a compound of 'agri' and 'cultura'; 'agri' is a form of the word 'ager', which means 'field'.  Culture comes from the Latin 'cultura', which means 'cultivate'.  And so, agriculture, is 'field cultivation', or 'field culture'.



Another supplementary business name. A combination of ‘inspire’ and ‘landscapes’, with an ‘a’ in between: Inspirascapes. Landscapes that inspire. That’s my intent in making a landscape: that it inspires you.



Another supplementary business name. A combination of ‘theme’ and ‘landscapes’. Landscapes with a theme. A landscape style or focus is a landscape theme.



C27 893456


Green Thumb San Diego Comprehensive Landscape Design Plants