Advice for the Great Deluge of 2017

Wow this is a lot of rain, I hope people are keeping an eye on potted succulents and moving them under shelter or covering them to keep them from becoming over-saturated and rotting out. This is a good time to examine areas of the garden for standing water and observe which plants are growing there,…

California Heritage Plant February 2017

Snowberry is our pick for California Heritage Plant 2017 Symphoricarpos albus  is common throughout most of the American North West.  This thicket forming native grows 3-6ft. wide and high spreading via rhizomes.  Pink flowers appear late Spring and early Summer giving way to white berries.  The berries contain saponins which have mild toxicity and many…

Unusual Edible for February 2017

Big Jim Loquat is our pick for Unusual Edible February 2017 Eriobotrya japonica ‘Big Jim’ Loquats originated in China and were introduced  in Japan 1000 years ago during the T’ang dynasty.  Chinese migrant workers carried Loquat seed everywhere they went and it easily naturalized in moderate and tropical climates.  The fruit is 30% seed and…

Use this Native Planting Soil for Success with California Natives

G&B ORGANICS NATIVE PLANTING MIX is ideal for western region landscapes that require less water. Specially blended to provide an excellent balance between moisture retention and drainage, NATIVE PLANTING MIX provides an organic alternative to plant-less “rock-scapes” or artificial turf. The organic materials in NATIVE PLANTING MIX help build life back into soils that have…

Whats On Sale January 2017

It’s not too late to distribute California Native Wild Flower Seed, for a beautiful display of flowers which benefit local pollinators come spring! All Pacific Coast California Native seed half off during the month of January 2017.  

Unusual Edible January 2017

Hachiya Persimmon is our pick for Unusual Edible for January 2017 Diospyros kaki ‘Hachiya’ came to  North America from China, Japan, Korea and Burma in the 1800s.  The tree is deciduous, leaves drop off in Fall and fruit comes on late season.  Sometimes the leaves fall off before the fruit is done setting, making for…

How to Select and Plant Bare Root Trees

Saturday January 21st at 12:00 noon Ploughshares Nursery 2701 Main St. Alameda CA ‘How to Select and Plant Bare Root Trees’ Bare root trees (see list below) are sold without soil and require special care to be successful, but you can save a lot of money when you plant them! Join Ploughshare’s Jeff Bridge for…

Unusual Edible for December 2016

Mache or Valerianella locusta ‘Corn Salad’ grows wild in parts of Europe, North Africa and the Middle East.  This is a nutty flavored cool season green which lays low to the ground and is easy to grow from seed. “Corn salad was originally foraged by European peasants until Jean-Baptiste de La Quintinie, royal gardener of…

Ploughshares will be Closed 11-24 and 11-25 for Thanksgiving

Ploughshares will be closed 11-24 and 11-25 for Thanksgiving.  Thank you for your support this year, your interest in growing edibles, using plants which require less water and restoring native plants to our urban gardens makes the world a better place and keeps our doors open!  It’s been a privilege serving Alameda and the East…

Pollinator Power Plant for November 2016

Eschscholzia californica , California Poppy is our choice for Pollinator Power Plant for November 2016.   Not because poppies actually should be growing or blooming right now, but because NOW is the time to sow seed for poppies next year.  Sow seed directly, mixed in soil and sand and expect a sea of lime-green foliage and…

Unusual Edible for November 2016

Passiflora edulis ‘Alameda Freddie’ is our pick for Unusual Edible for November 2016. Who would have guessed that Passion Fruit was so easy to grow in Alameda?  Fast growing vine with miniature versions of the flower which so fascinates owners of the ornamental variety.  Fruit appears late season as green ovoids which slowly darken to…

California Heritage Plant for November 2016

Carex barbarae or ‘White Root’ is a our choice for California Heritage Plant for November 2016.   This attractive sedge occurs naturally in California’s seasonal riparian areas, of which only 5% remain today.  Give regular water for lush green growth, or let dry late Spring and Summer and enjoy its brown dormant appearance.   White Root was…

What’s On Sale November 2016

It’s time to prep your soil for Spring with Worm Castings and Chicken Manure.  To help motivate you, we put Kellog’s Gardener and Bloome Worm Castings and Point Reye’s Compost Paulette’s Poo on SALE for the month of November! Regularly $10.99  ON SALE FOR $4.50 the month of November. Regularly $10.99 ON SALE FOR $4.50…