As a result of prioritizing our efforts within the landscapes at facilities that have been in use through summer, landscapes at unused facilities have been neglected. It would be embarrassing if anyone else were here to see the results. Those who maintain the other infrastructure have mentioned that these neglected areas resemble ghost towns. Flowers continue to bloom without any assistance. Also though, weeds continue to grow and toss seed for the next generation. There is so much to catch up on. What is worse is that I will not be working here much until November, and will be gone again in February.

1. While no one is looking, lily of the Nile continues to bloom into the middle of September. I was not here to see it, but I suspect that this particular colony was not blooming on time for July.

2. Kahili ginger is blooming too, but right on schedule. This is obviously a substandard bloom. I am impressed nonetheless. It was not expected to bloom at all. It was just planted over winter.

3. Otherwise, most of the bloom here is that of weeds. Strangely, I do not remember anyone pulling weeds from the pavement before. Could the formerly constant traffic have inhibited them?

4. Should this say “PLEASE LET US GROW ON WALKWAYS” or maybe “PLEASE LET US STAY ON WALKWAYS”? Regardless, I am impressed by the ability of weeds to compose a sentence.

5. Grapes would certainly be easier to reach if they grew on neglected, hanging vines like these. Unfortunately, if left long enough to produce fruit, these vines would become a tangled thicket.

6. Goodness! This is what happens when a ponderosa pine seedling grows under a deck, and no one is here to pull it out before it grows right through! The weed problem here is now serious!!!

This is the link for Six on Saturday, for anyone else who would like to participate:


27 thoughts on “Six on Saturday: Ghost Town

    1. Hedychium gardnerianum. It is the only ginger that is common here. (There are a few others in Southern California.) It blooms reliably, even where winters are cooler. I just did not expect it to bloom after such a brutal transplant last year. It was just a bunch of scrap rhizomes.

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    1. I really can not explain that agapanthus. I do not believe that it is any different from the agapanthus in the other landscapes. I suppose that I could relocate some of it into the other landscapes to see if it continues to bloom later than the others.
      I am pleased with the ginger. It grew from random scraps that I buried there last winter. Now that it is growing, it can be divided and relocated elsewhere.


    1. Ponderosa pines do not often fall, although they can die standing, necessitating removal. Such removal is expensive for trees that must be removed from over buildings and other infrastructure. This particular tree is between a building and a swimming pool.

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  1. Point 4 made me laugh and I started imagining what signs the others might write. I saw on our news how General Sherman had been wrapped in a fire blanket to help it survive and it made me think of you – you must be closely linked in my mind with sequoias.

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    1. General Sherman has survived many fires during the 2,500 or so years it has lived there. It needs no fire blanket. Perhaps the blanket was installed to prevent smoldering through the bark and into interior wood, which can create significant cavities. Although the process is quite natural, it is less than ideal for such elderly trees, and, in a few centuries or so, may contribute to structural deficiency.
      The other signs in the garden are not as interesting. Yucca whipplei is trying to bum a ride back to San Luis Obispo County.

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    1. The horseweed has been here longer than anyone can remember. There is no shortage of seed. However, I do not remember them coming up in the pavement like this.
      Redwoods through decks are somewhat common here, but not pines. Since pines do not last as long, and are sensitive to disturbance, they are more likely to get cut down prior to development.

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      1. Fires have been horrid here, partly because of the lack of resource management after clear cut harvesting a century ago. The forest is unnaturally combustible. Many here prefer to cut down as many trees as possible, particularly pines and firs. The area from which I got these six pictures would not have been protected by firefighters if the CZU Fire had moved in. It would have been too dangerous for them.

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      2. They burn here a lot. I live near the last large untouched swamp in Florida and almost took some pictures of a controlled burn last week. yes, management is lacking and it seems crazy to me the power lines generate a lot of the fires.

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      3. We can not burn here. It is ridiculous. My neighbors cleared some of the debris that remained after the fire, but could only dispose of it elsewhere on their properties or at a dumpsite. If I clear my properties, I must leave the debris there, in big combustible piles!

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      4. Tony, that is strange. It was in the paper here recently California looking for burning advice from Florida..maybe they need it. I think natural systems work, I am fascinated by the controlled burns here. Will save links for you next itme I see something.

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      5. Many of us in California know what needs to be done, but the crazy tree huggers who think that they are environmentalists interfere with it. We do not need advice from Florida, since our forests are so very different. In our region, selective harvest would actually benefit the forest. The redwoods that were harvested a century ago regenerated with multiple trunks where there had been single trunks. Those trunks should be thinned out, while retaining the primary canopy. Even if the larger trunks get harvested, the smaller trunks will eventually dominate as the forest recovers. It may take centuries, but it is possible. Redwood forests are some of the only ecosystems here that do not rely on fire. They are instead somewhat resistant to fire naturally. They are only as combustible as they are now because the pioneer species grew up with the redwoods after primary harvest.

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    1. Some trees have more rights than people though. I have inspected many that are serious problems, but are also protected. For example, I condemned a very big, very dead and very decaying ponderosa pine that was in serious danger of falling onto a home. A permit was not immediately granted because someone noticed a hole way up on the deteriorating trunk that a woodpecker might possibly (possibly!) be living in. Apparently, the unseen woodpecker and dead tree were more important the residents of the home below.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, of course it should; but these restrictions are formulated by the same sorts who do not want us to responsibly manage the forest after former clear cut harvest. They do not care if resulting forest fires burn homes.

        Liked by 2 people

    1. Because of the situation with the pandemic, children are unable to come to camp there. Other facilities are in use for smaller groups, but not the camps that normally accommodate large groups of children.

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