We have pests galore, from the aphids that attack the mandevilla and the roses, to the grasshoppers who snack on my bougainvillea and the gophers who devour entire parsley plants in one sitting. I try to use only organic pesticides, as well as to rely on the strongest spray nozzle on my garden hoses. Lady bugs are fun to turn loose, but not always cooperative about staying on the plants you have set out for their feasting…
Fortunate to live less than a block from the oldest nursery in San Diego, I turn to the staff at Mission Hills Nursery with all my gardening questions. Family-owned and very involved in our community, the Filofax family is incredibly savvy regarding San Diego gardening in all aspects. When I was hunting for sorrel late this past spring, they were only too happy to order some for me, and it has flourished in my herb garden.
Watering is the main issue in San Diego gardens, unless you have succulents and other low-water plants. May through September usually mean I have a hose grafted to my hand every two to three days for hand watering. Water is rationed here now, and sprinklers for lawns can be run only three days per week for seven minutes at a crack!
We have dealt with this by reducing our already small lawn and planting lo-water ground cover in several spots. Fortunately, through July this year, our Marine layer of clouds have keep summer temperatures at a record low since 1933! No beach days yet, but the garden is happy.