Newly Registered
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2008 1:03 am
Location: California


Hi all. I’m new here, just joined. I really need some help from people that know what they’re doing!

I hate my backyard. We rent a house and the landlord pays a gardener $75 a month just to come mow the lawn. She says we can do whatever we want with the planters and flowerbeds, which are complete trash.

Theres a few bushes and palm sprouts growing around the place but I have no clue where to start. Anything I touch turns to dust when it comes to gardening. We’ve got shamrocks that are doing pretty well in the bed next to the living room window. I don’t want to get rid of those because we get alot of four leaf clovers and they’re the only things that stay green back there. I tried tossing wildflower seeds into the bed on the side of the house and covered it with potting soil, watered it religiously every morning when I went out to smoke, they sprouted and then died. How did I manage to kill wildflowers? I’m thinking WILD flowers, okay, they grow pretty well on their own in the wild right? Then they should totally flourish in my yard where I’m gonna think to toss em some food on occasion, Right?

Please help me! What flowering stuff can I put out there that pretty much takes care of itself? The whole south end of the yard, North side of the house is one big planter on either side of the patio and it seems all the flowers I’m looking at require at least partial sun. There is NO SUN ever hitting those beds. Then the north end of the yard is in full sun all year round. Do you think the wildflowers would do better there?

Also, I bought a weeder/cultivator thingy at OSH today and there is a TON of rocks in those flowerbeds. What can I do with those since my cousins husband says I can’t put them in the green trashcan with all the weeds.

Greener Thumb
Posts: 1416
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2008 2:40 am
Location: US

Please help me! What flowering stuff can I put out there that pretty much takes care of itself?
Try plants that are native to your area. A native plant will be the best choice of a plant to take care of itself.

Las Pilitas nursery helped my girlfriend and her husband when they first moved out to California. She was like you, she did not want any plants that she was going to have to take care of for the long haul. She's got kids and both she and her husband work full-time + and life's too short she said so she told me to figure something out for her. I contacted quite a few nurseries out in CA and the most helpful was Las Pilitas by a long shot so I told her to start taking photos and e-mail them to them. She's not a gardener and when I say she is not a gardener I am not exaggerating. She took photos of her yard and sent them to somebody in an e-mail and let them know what County she was in and they took it from there selecting plants for her based on what colors she liked. Yup, my girlfriend had a particular color palate that she wanted to work with because of the color of her house. She and her husband begrudgingly planted everything they bought from Las Pilitas although she begged me to fly out and do it for her. Nope, I wanted her to break fingernails ;)

Here's the link to their website-

They have two nurseries. One near San Diego County and one in San Luis Obispo County. My girlfriend is totally hooked on this nursery because she literally sent them photos of her property and told them she could spend 2k for the whole year because it was a newer home and there wasn't much there and she was embarrassed at how bare they looked. Las Pilitas respected her and worked within her budget. They did tell her to remove a few garbage trees her builder tossed in the ground which she did. She drives down to the nursery they have in Santa Margarita a couple times a year now with a list of what they already sold her and adds as money allows. She's been there now 5 years and the couple trips she makes a year have really made a difference. I'd have to say her yard is now one of the best looking yards on the whole street and it's definitely a hands off yard. She does have to water her new plants until they get established if there's no rain but Las Pilitas would go over all of that with you.

Forgot to mention, her husband is a doctor and is opposed to any chemicals around their children so the native plants were a great path for them to take from that respect. The local native plants Las Pilitas picked for them were adapted to the area in which they are raising their family.

Return to “What Doesn't Fit Elsewhere”