Woodland wonders 2010

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This lecture was given in August, 2010 as part of the California native plant gardening series Out of the Wilds and Into Your Garden

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  • 1.Out of the Wilds and Into Your GardenGardening with Western L.A. County Native Plants Project SOUND - 2010 Project SOUND

2. Woodland Wonders:Plants for Dry ShadeC.M. Vadheim and T. Drake CSUDH & Madrona Marsh Preserve Madrona Marsh Preserve August 7 & 10, 2010 Project SOUND 3. For some gardeners, restoration of locally native plant life is of key importance Very local native plants may be the easiest to grow literallygrow themselves Project SOUND 4. What is my local Plant Community? Coastalstrand/bluff S. CoastalPrairie Coastalshrubland Coastal SageScrub Chaparral parts of PV,mostly athigherelevationshttp://www.planetizen.com/node/23441 Riparian (wetland/streamside) communities Project SOUND 5. Madrona Marsh Preserve gives a good idea of what many localneighborhoods might have looked like in the past Project SOUND 6. Gardens are located in the spacebetween natural and human landscapes Project SOUND 7. Many gardeners want to create a cool, shady oasis Project SOUNDhttp://www.nanscapes.biz/gardens.html 8. The Riparian Woodland is a source forlocal shade plants that like water Project SOUND 9. But what if you want/need both shade and water-wise?http://philipsgardenblog.com/2008/04/ Perhaps youre lucky enough to have a mature oak(s) in your garden Project SOUND 10. Or you may just want to make the shady parts of yourgarden more water-wise Project SOUND 11. A few guidelines choosing appropriate plant species for your garden If you live near natural areas: Choose local native plants (from locally derived sources) best choice Choose other native (and non-native) plants & cultivarsConsult with your local Land with great care Conservancy/Preserve or local native should not invade orplant experts (CA Native Plant hybridize with localSociety) to make good choicesnative plants Project SOUND 12. A few guidelines choosing appropriate native plant species for your garden If you live in an urbanized areayou may also: Choose plants from appropriate areas that are not immediately local, but still are close by: Inland areas of L.A. Co.; Local foothills; Coastal (lowland) plants fromOrange or San Diego Co. Choose plants from farther away that have appropriate characteristics for your garden: Central/N. CA coastal areasIn fact, plants from nearby areas S. CA desertsmay actually have grown in your Baja CAneighborhood at one time Project SOUND 13. The Southern Oak Woodland is our mostobvious source for dry shade plants Foothills of S. CA (including L.A. and other local counties) Inland valleys of L.A. County (Woodland Hills; Thousand Oaks; Diamond Bar; Cal Poly Pomona)http://www.rivenrock.com/october2007.htm Project SOUND 14. The Southern Oak Woodland of CA Precipitation: 15-25 annually Elevation: 1500-5000 ft in western S. California Common trees/large shrubs: Coast Liveoak (Quercus agrifolia) - also Canyon Liveoak (Q. chrysolepis), California Black Oak (Q. kelloggii), Engelmann Oak (Q. engelmannii ) and Valley Oak (Q. lobata) CA Walnut Blue Elderberry California Bay Laurel (Umbellularia californica) Toyon Lemonadeberry Sugarbush Coffeeberry (Rhamnus californica), Sourberry/Tri-lobe Sumac Project SOUNDhttp://www.laspilitas.com/nature-of-california/communities/southern-oak-woodland 15. Southern OakWoodland Most often on North-facing slopes, shaded canyons and sheltered inland valleys onhttp://bss.sfsu.edu/holzman/courses/Fall01%20projects/AcornW.htm well-drained soils May be intersected by intermittent streams Oaks may grow in dense clusters or more openly a woodland rather than a forest Smaller trees and shrubs along with herbaceous plants, ferns and grasses form a vegetative understory which is an important part of thishttp://farm3.static.flickr.com/2289/1594943902_ead554319f.jpg community.One of the more commonunderstory plants is Poison Oak Project SOUND 16. Southern OakWoodlands have adistinctive feel dry shadehttp://www.laspilitas.com/California_birds/Sparoows_towhees_and_buntings/Chipping_sparrow/Chipping_sparrow_in_your_garden.htmhttp://grounds.stanford.edu/points/significanttrees/quercusagrifolia.html Project SOUNDhttp://jamesgonzalez.net/images/trips/pinecreek/quercus_agrifolia.JPG 17. Oaks are adapted to our Mediterranean climate Mature CA oaks survive on winterrains and a summer dry period. Oaks set a deep tap root and havemany shallow surface feeder roots. Shallow oak roots extend beyondthe trees canopy. Feeder roots aretypically 1 to 3 feet below thesoils surface. To keep S. CA oaks healthy youneed to replicate the summer dry(Zone 1 or 1-2) water pattern; thismeans using only plants with thesame summer water requirementsunder oaks. Regularly watered lawns will killhttp://ic.ucsc.edu/~wxcheng/wewu/quercusagrifolia.htm a native CA oak, usually bydisease (root fungi) Project SOUND 18. Watering mature oak (or other Zone 1-2) trees Do not water in critical area (10 ft from trunk) Water only in dry spring and summer conditions (if at all) Water no more than once a month; no overhead watering Let water soak to depth of 18-24 inches Organic mulch (oak leaves) required, even in critical area butnot touching the trunk Project SOUND 19. What do we mean by dry shade? http://www.csmonitor.com/The-Culture/Gardening/diggin-it/2009/0917/dry-shade-in-the-garden-a-checkered-solutionYour definition maybe very differenthttp://www.hotgardens.net/santa_barbara_garden_tour.htmfrom minehttp://ilonasgarden.com/ Project SOUND 20. Gardens in Mediterranean climates(including S. CA) have three Water Zones Zone 1 no supplemental water; soils aredry in summer/fall. Zone 2 occasional summer water; soil isallowed to dry out between waterings.Watering is slow & deep to replenish thesoil water stores. Zone 3 regular water; soil is usually moistto soggy, even in summer. Project SOUND 21. WaterDescriptionPicture Result/consequenceZone Many Zone 1 plants (including many native to western L.A. No supplementalZone 1 water county & deserts) become summer dormant; some shade species remain green Includes CA Natives from Occasional water; many plant communities; soil dries outoccasional summer waterZone 2 between deephelps many species to remain waterings evergreen many also extend bloom season Only native riparian and some Regular water;Zone 3 soil moist/ soggy mountain/N. CA species will kill many local CA natives Project SOUND 22. The secret of a water-wise garden is to prioritize waterneeds and group plants with similar requirementsRegular waterDry; needsdrought-tolerantplantsWater-wise ; occasional summer waterhttp://www.taunton.com/finegardening/pages/g00101.asp Project SOUND 23. Project SOUND 24. Is it hard to grow plants under oaks (and othersummer dry trees)? Yes, but not impossible Challenges: summer droughtrequirement; dense shade; rootcompetition Solutions: Choose plants that thrive in dry shade: Plants from the Southern Oak Woodland Plants from the Central and Northern Oak Woodlands Other drought-and-shade tolerant plants (often from Chaparral) Prune to provide better airhttp://syllable.rice.edu/LangEx_06_07/WIKI/index.php?title=Presentation_Group_1_with_circulation, lightAndr%C3%A9s&printable=yes&printable=yes Project SOUND 25. Under many drought-tolerant trees you have options/choices Project SOUND 26. Central & Northern Oak Woodlands Annual rainfall: 20-35 inches Dominant large trees/shrubs Valley Oak (Quercus lobata), Blue Oak (Quercus douglasii), Coast Live Oak (Quercus agrifolia) and Interior Live Oak (Quercus wislizenii) Gray Pine ( Pinus sabiniana) Understory: Manzanita (Arctostaphylos spp.) Coffeeberry and Redberry (Rhamnus spp.) Currant and Gooseberry (Ribes spp.) Toyon In openings: Grasses & ferns Annual & perennial wildflowers : Goldfields (Lasthenia spp.), Poppies (Eschscholzia spp.), Lupines (Lupinus spp.) and other forbs in spring. Project SOUND 27. Oak woodlands in Central & N. CA get more rain they look & feel more lush than those of S. CAhttp://www.laspilitas.com/California_birds/Finches/House_finch/house_finch.html You may find the greener look of the more northern Oak Woodland more to your liking/needs http://www.laspilitas.com/nature-of-california/communities/central-oak-woodland Project SOUND 28. The key is to group plants with like needs together Project SOUND 29. Project SOUND 30. http://celosangeles.ucdavis.edu/Natural_Resources/Oak_Woodlands.htm Shade is variable, even in an Oak Woodland Project SOUND 31. You need to become aconnoisseur of shade Light shade (FS/PS):receives shade for lessthan four hours each day. Partial or semi-shade(PS): assumes a half day ofshade. Full shade (FSH): occurswhere there is no directsun.http://www.bringingbackthenatives.net/slides/Loeb/Loeb-Pages/index.html Project SOUND 32. Light shade Definition: shaded but bright Examples: The suns rays blocked by a tree, wall or building for several hours at midday, sunny the rest of the day Areas that receive filtered or dappled sunlight for longer periods.http://www.rivenrock.com/blogcanyon062006.jpg(edges of shady gardens or areas under the canopy of lightly branched trees) Effects on plants: Provides beneficial cooling/shade during the heat of summer Flower and foliage color may be more brilliant Most sun-loving plants can survive/thrive in light shade Project SOUND 33. Partial, medium or semi-shade Definition: direct sun rays are blocked from an area for at least half the day. Similar to an open glade in the forestor the woods edge Examples: Established landscapes with maturetrees; area receives some direct sunearly or late in the day Bright, north- or east-facingexposures, slopes Effect on Plants: Protection from harmful effects ofdirect sunlight Less available light so best to utilizeplants that require some shade http://wildsuburbia.blogspot.com/2009/11/friends-of-south-pasadena-nature-park.html Project SOUNDhttp://longbeachnaturalareas.blogspot.com/2007/06/el-dorado-regional-park.html 34. Full (dense) s