A short mid-day walk in Golden Gate Park

at the DeYoung Museum...

Golden Gate Park

I love the old statues in Golden Gate Park. Lions, sphinxes, Irish patriots, men of science, flying gods slaying serpents. So romantic!

I went up to the tower, but none of the pictures I took there look very good. They have a huge, very detailed satellite map of San Francisco on a wall up there that's more interesting than the panoramic view. Panoramic views of San Francisco are everywhere.

The DeYoung Museum

This picture is blurry.

Mobile in De Young

At Stowe Lake...

Stowe Lake

Evidence of recent goddess worship...

Goddess worship on Stowe Lake island

I came this close to taking the rusty metal one home with me (pinching his thumb and index finger very close together, but not actually touching). I had all kinds of reasons why that would be okay. It's not like it belongs to anyone anymore, just sitting there. I'm entitled to take it. Wouldn't a good Wiccan appreciate my desire to have this witchy relic in my garden, imbuing the environment with its mystical energy? Wouldn't she like to see Wiccan influences spread and propagate?

But then I realized I didn't have a bag, and I'd have to carry it in my hand and people would see me with it. They'd laugh. And what if I got spotted by a Wiccan gang? A gang of hippie witches could totally kick my ass.

Or I could come back with a bag. And wouldn't it be funny to take all the Wiccan artifacts and replace them with lots of little crucifixes and Virgin of Guadalupe candles and portraits of Jesus with a bleeding heart. I'd show them!

A Japanese pagoda from our sister city Osaka.

Stowe Lake island pagoda from SF's sister city

Turtles, just before a scary little girl came by.

Two turtles


I've got the blahs today.

kitchen table

The neighborhood is quiet and foggy this morning. I don't feel like working in the garden even though there is so much to do.

the backyard

You can't see it in all the confusion, but I just planted Cercis occidentalis in there. The Princess Plant is overused, I know, but I like it. I divided the potted Cymbidum last winter...I think both divisions might bloom this year. I'm going to put a bench in that bare spot in the middle left.


I'm done with Dahlia imperialis after this years' bloom. A bench is going to go there next year, and I won't have anyplace to grow it after it goes in. Does anyone want a segment? With protection from the wind and ample water, D. imperialis grows 10' in a few months from a 6"-8" segment of trunk. And then it makes big flowers in winter before dying back. I'll have dozens of segments to give away by early spring 2007.

Dahlia imperialis

The streets are quiet.

Bernal Heights.

Bernal Heights

random maidenhair steps

I should have taken a picture of this front yard last winter when the landscaping was new. It looks great. Someone did a good job.

front yard planting

succulent container garden



Princess plant and aeonium (sp?); nice combination.


street planting


I get coffee and a bagel (an everything bagel with cream cheese, cukes, sprouts and onions) and have a seat in Holly Park.

Monterey cypress. Growing too tall for their own good, but still pretty.


I've taken this picture dozens of times over the last few years, sitting here with coffee and bagel.


Then I swung on the swing for a few minutes, and watched that guy do his yardwork.


The camera gives the court a weird angle.

basketball court in holly park

The big kids are back in school, but the little ones still have plenty of free time.

playground Holly Park

Cute little girl!

stylish kid

Done with coffee and bagel, I head over to the other park in the neighborhood for a little hike. This cactus garden looks good all year long. Even dying, cacti are interesting to look at. The pink flower is Amaryllis belladona, commonly called Naked Lady.


I usually take this path.


But today I'm taking this one.

Bernal Hill

Thickets of fennel and blackberry

bernal hill

give way to Eucalyptus globulus.


The path brings me right up to the back of these houses. Too bad for the people in the houses, I guess. They have great views of Diamond Heights and Twin Peaks.






and upwards.







I can sense the guy on the hill in the center of the picture sees me taking his picture.


I'd love to replant that area with the native blackberry, and add some Fremontodendron and Salvia Clevelandii.

Bernal Hill

That's Holly Park in the distance, where I started out.



My house is always obscured.


This neglected ginger lily (Hedychium) is the third one I've seen lately in bloom. Meanwhile, mine, pampered and well-tended, remains flowerless and I'm thinknig about removing it. Maybe I'll stop pampering it instead.


I took a similar walk last July.


The world's largest flower. Link.

"How many of these strange plants still survive is unknown, but the last of them can be expected to vanish as the remaining primary forests of Borneo and Sumatra are burned."

More here. Scroll down to #10.


Which Buffy Girl Are You? Find out @ She's Crafty

I don't think I'm super Anya-like.

But I do adore that once-twice-a-demon (RIP)...


Six horrifying parasites.



A micro-compact house in the backyard would be totally cool.


"Freakboy had these temporary 'Wolverine' piercings done at a shop in Brazil; I'm guessing that they're a little impractical around the house and on the toilet, but they're probably good conversation-starters at church and such."

Picture at the link!


Back from a week in Provincetown, Mass

A lone (humpback?) whale visiting with the ferry on the way to Provincetown, Massachusetts. Early August. We had its attention for about ten minutes. I wish I'd taken a movie instead of stills, but I didn't think of it.

whale two

whale four

whale one

whale three

whale five

whale six

I didn't take as many pictures of my vacation as I thought I did. We did something photographable every day, but I didn't bring my camera with me, and I didn't take any pictures in Provincetown itself, or of any gardens. (Ptown front yard gardens have very uniform vegetation in the summer: coleus, hydrangea, lilly, and privet were everywhere, and lots of humungous hosta. I also saw one nice Amaranthus caudatus and two big Hydrangea petiolaris which were cool.)

This is the place we rented:

house one

house two

house three

house four

The books I brought with me to read:

vacation reading

(I like to read many short books on vacation as opposed to fewer, longer books. I also like to reread favorites, like Lot 49 and Demian. That Carl Sagan book was good, but spent too much time dealing with UFO abductees.)

We walked a mile-long promontory out to the dunes and beach.

provincetown one

ptown two

ptown dunes one

ptown dunes two

This native beach rose was everywhere. Elsewhere, I saw it make big, bright red hips that I neglected to photograph.

ptown dunes three

ptown dunes four

Some friends came over and one night we got very drunk and played Uno. I won.

vacation games